Tag: Meeting Minutes
While serving on the board of a community association is a volunteer position, board members can get very invested in it. It’s not uncommon to hear about board members who overstep boundaries. That’s why it’s important to be able to gently—or in some cases, more firmly—remind a member who’s taking over duties that aren’t part of her position about the board members’ official duties and why it’s important for everyone to play his or her role.
Typically, if decisions made by the board turn out well, members are happy. But if the decisions lead to unforeseen costly expenses to the community, some members might sue, regardless of the board members’ good intentions. That’s why it’s more important than ever that your board’s judgments be the result of a sound, deliberative decision-making process. If they are, there’s a much better chance that courts will defer to them in case of a lawsuit.
You know that organization is one of the keys to association management success, especially if you’re in charge of a larger community or one with many members. If you did an annual spring cleaning this year, you might also have realized that you need to cut down on clutter in your office, which might include boxes of association records—which can get sizable if they include accounting records, membership lists, meeting minutes, and other important papers—that the association has accumulated over the years.
Buying a home in a community association is a serious investment, so many homeowners and members live in their units for an extended period of time. Although it sometimes seems like an on-site association manager is part of the community because she’s on the property continually, this is a job and, at some point, the manager or the management company will inevitably leave. The question that concerns owners and the board of directors at that point is whether the transition to a new manager and company will be smooth and productive.
When a board member gives up her position, your association will have the sometimes difficult task of replacing the outgoing member. But the challenging part of replacing a member comes after the new member is found and elected to the board. That’s because, depending upon the new member’s experience with your association, or associations generally, there may be a lot of information for him to quickly get up to speed on—especially if big decisions are in the process of being made.
Privacy issues have always been taken into consideration when it comes to issues like medical information, but it might not occur to community members that seemingly more casual items are protected from general knowledge. So community members who want to inspect the records of their association—for a variety of reasons, some legitimate and some improper—might not realize that these records aren’t automatically free game.
Finances are a huge consideration for community association boards and managers. It takes money—and sometimes lots of it—to keep a community or condominium building up to high standards and running smoothly. If you manage an association or serve on your association’s board of directors, you already know that almost everything you do depends to some degree on whether you have a budget that you can work with realistically.
To encourage member participation in community affairs, many boards permit association members to attend and speak at board meetings, even when the bylaws do not give the members that right. But if a member speaks too long, rambles off topic, or intentionally antagonizes the board or other members, he makes it hard for the meeting to be productive.