Online Alerts

Advise Members Without Running Afoul of Law

March 22, 2018    

As a community association manager, a large part of your time can be taken up with questions from directors and members that require a response. While you might want to provide as much helpful information as you can, be aware that this area can be fraught with risk for you and your management...

Dealing with Tricky Issue of Association Records

March 22, 2018    

Occasionally, a homeowner will ask to review association records. This can be a tricky issue if you don’t know exactly how to handle this request and what you can and can’t show to a member. A recent court case highlighted the specific issue of associations withholding records based...

HOA’s Open-Garage-Door Mandate Raises Safety Concerns

March 22, 2018    

A California homeowners association is requiring members to keep their garage doors open most of the day on weekdays. The new rule is in response to the association learning that so-called squatters—people living in a home illegally—were inhabiting the garage of at least one home in...

Use Bylaw, not Rule, to Ban Smoking in Community

February 23, 2018    

As time goes on, even more information emerges about how dangerous smoking is not only for smokers, but also for those exposed to secondhand smoke. Secondhand tobacco smoke—Environmental Tobacco Smoke or ETS—has been classified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a...

Explain to Board Why Environmental Initiative Is a Must

February 23, 2018    

If you manage a condominium building that’s out of date environmentally, you should consider getting behind a green initiative. You could push for the building to become LEED certified. It’s possible to bring older condominiums up to date environmentally, but you’ll have to...

Governing Documents Often Determine Rental Issue

February 23, 2018    

In some communities, there can be controversy over short-term rentals, with some members being strongly in favor of rentals while others fight to keep the community limited only to unit owners. But the outcome of a fight like this will be largely dependent on the covenants and governing...

Avoid Liability When Suspending Member’s Privileges

January 25, 2018    

Association fees are an integral part of keeping a planned community or condominium building running smoothly. They’re key to paying bills for routine services and amenities and, in some communities, can contribute to additional bonuses for members, like social events. But when members don...

Don’t Force Signature for Board Pledge

January 25, 2018    

Setting a code of conduct for board members who are campaigning and asking all board candidates to pledge to follow it may reduce negativity, but remember that you shouldn’t try to require candidates to sign it. An association board has no authority to impose requirements for board...

Make Sure Governing Documents Spell Out Responsibilities

January 25, 2018    

It’s important to make sure that your governing documents spell out exactly the expectations for members—especially when it comes to financial responsibilities. An association prevailed in a recent case in Pennsylvania because its covenants specified what owners were obligated to pay...

Set Zero Tolerance Policy for Member Harassment

December 14, 2017    

The past year has created divisiveness in political conversations and discussions about recent exposes regarding sexual harassment. Living in close proximity in a condo building or sharing amenities year after year in more spread out planned communities can throw together members with different...

Election Results Stand Despite Members’ Disapproval

December 14, 2017    

Board elections have the potential to cause a stir within community associations. They can become highly competitive, requiring campaigning or other gestures by candidates. Owners who aren’t happy with the outcome might protest, either acting displeased or escalating things to the point...

N.C. Foreclosure Fraud Scheme Is Cut Off

December 14, 2017    

Federal authorities reported they have halted a homeowners association foreclosure fraud scheme, after a nearly three-year investigation. Federal authorities seized gold, cash, and other property from a Raleigh, N.C., man accused of fraudulently scooping up homes in foreclosure. He was charged...