Self-Managed Communities

Self-Managed Communities

We are often asked why a self-managed community association should consider a professional, licensed, and experienced management company.  Below you will find a list of the key reasons and benefits:

  • Experience – The Board of Directors of a Community Association is comprised of owners who care about their building and community. They volunteer their time and energy to ensure the Association is run optimally. In most cases the Directors are experts in their own field but not necessarily Association Management. Professional Association management companies are specialists that bring industry best practices to your community.
  • Personnel – Associations do not need to be in the employment business. A management company can provide a full team of trained management professionals and take on all of the Human Resources, Payroll, Training, Insurance, and other employer responsibilities. This includes replacement personnel if required. It also removes the Directors from directing, disciplining, and possibly terminating personnel who work in the building they live.
  • Role – A Board of Directors’ role is to establish strategy, policy, and direction, and to make decisions on management recommendations. In a self-managed Association the Board takes on the day-to-day management role. Professional management companies allow the Board to return to its primary role of leadership and oversight.
  • Buffer – Residents who live in Associations must live within the covenants and rules of the governing documents. Management companies provide a buffer between the Board and their neighbors while ensuring the governing documents are honored.
  • Continuity – The Board of Directors can and often does change every year. It is very difficult to run any organization without consistency. Management companies provide continuity during transitional periods.
  • Compliance – Management companies can ensure your Association stays in compliance with the ever-changing regulatory environment.
  • Economies of Scale – Management companies have preferred bulk purchasing arrangements with many providers. These savings should be passed on to the Association with no benefit to the management company. In most cases, management companies provide a higher level of service at lower cost.
  • Technology – Management companies have state of the art technology in the areas of communication, web applications, security, finance, reporting, and resident convenience.
  • 24 /7 Coverage – Most management companies have 24/7 coverage of licensed staff on call for all Association emergencies.
  • Accountability – Most management companies provide metrics and reporting that allow the Board to objectively measure the management function.

Concerns

Associations that are self-managed have legitimate concerns about changing to professional association management.  Below are some of the concerns most often raised:

  • Control – We often hear that Boards are concerned that they will lose control if they hire a management company. Management companies will bring their expertise to your community and will make recommendations but decision making remains with the Board. Simply put, management executes the decisions of the Board.
  • On-site personnel – Boards can be understandably concerned about what happens to the people who work in their building. During transition to a professional management company, most management companies will recommend retaining the existing team and provide additional support, training and evaluation. If we believe certain staff should be replaced, we will make this recommendation to the Board but control remains with the Board. Employees usually embrace the additional support, training, benefits, and career opportunities.
  • Contract – How do I get out of a management contract if I am not happy? Most management contracts provide 30 or 60 day termination provisions.
  • Communication – We have always known exactly what is happening in the building, what will happen now? We provide real-time online access to all of your Association records. In addition, we provide a weekly update and monthly comprehensive management report.

Conclusion

Professional Association management provides expertise, technology, and resources not available at self managed Associations.  Most of the time this is achieved at the same or lower cost than your current budget.  Control of the Association remains with the Board and owners of the building.  There are significant measureable benefits with little downside.

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