Being a member of the HOA board is a privilege, but it’s also serious business. It allows you to steer the building in the direction you believe is right, but also requires you to be an effective manager of your building and adequately represent the needs of your fellow owners.
To achieve your maximum potential as an HOA board member, consider these five strategies:
1. Always think about the good of the building first.
Your fellow owners elected you to represent their interests, so it’s important to always approach decisions as if you own the whole building yourself and want to protect your investment. Always remember to listen to your fellow owners’ concerns, as there is wisdom in the voice of the many.
2. But don’t ignore your unique strengths.
While representing the interests of others is of utmost importance, don’t let your personality get lost in the shuffle either. The best boards thrive on diversity. Whatever your professional background happens to be, use your unique perspective to bring your vision to the board.
3. Learn the rules.
Whatever your vision for the building, it will have to be executed while adhering to the HOA rules. Get a copy of the rulebook and read through it to learn the parameters you have to work within. If you find a rule that you think does the building a disservice, you can call a vote to see if others agree with you.
4. Think for the long term.
Being shortsighted might win you some quick popularity points, but short-term solutions are not always in the best interest of your building. Try to think for the long term – solutions that will have an multi-year impact usually cost more up front, but ultimately pay off in savings for your building.
5. Build a good relationship with your property manager.
The property manager is the acting arm of the HOA board – whatever changes you enact as a board will likely be executed and overseen by the the property manager. Building a good working relationship with this person will ensure the proper execution of the board’s vision.
Whatever your reasons for participating in the governance of your building, following the strategies above will help you to become a better HOA board member and give you a chance to carry out your vision.