Your Stress-Free Holiday Hosting Guide … With an HOA

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Planning a party for the holidays is stressful enough without the added concern of HOA guidelines and policies to add to the mix. Before you throw in the towel, here’s our tips to stress free hosting for the holidays.

Decorations

Does your HOA have guidelines on when you can put up holiday decorations and when you need to have them down by? Are there policies on lawn ornaments, inflatables, or lights? As a community member, keeping safety in mind and decorating to the enjoyment of all residents is part of the responsibility. Knowing these regulations will also prevent any Holiday mishaps from happening and prevent violations from the HOA.

For more HOA friendly tips, check out our article on Holiday decorating here.

Parking

When guests start arriving, cars will start adding up in front of your house. Is street parking an option in your community or is there a designated visitor lot for non-residents? Talk to your neighbors ahead of time so traffic doesn’t come as a surprise. Some communities make special exceptions for Holiday parking, make sure to ask your main office about any details.

Noise

Keep in mind that most communities have a noise ordinance one made by the HOA and another by the city. Nothing disrupts a party like someone knocking on your door with a noise complaint but luckily most HOA’s have a guideline on what types of noise and – how much – is acceptable.

Location

Does your community have a Clubhouse that would fit your guests more appropriately? It may be easier to coordinate, provide more room for guests and parking, and a buffer for noise between your party and your community. Each community will have their own set of Clubhouse policies so make sure you take a look at those in advance and keep an eye on how long you have the room booked for. Always book for a little longer than expected for adequate clean up time.

Pool & Outdoor Amenities

Not all Holiday parties have to be Winter Wonderland themed. If you’re planning on a tropical theme and it includes pool access, coordinate with your main office to let them know how many guests will be attending to make sure there won’t be any code violations. Each community has their own pool area max capacity and food and drink policies so make sure you’re well aware of those before planning. It’s always good to give your community a head’s up on any parties to ensure everything goes more smoothly.

Keep the Community Aware

Whatever party you are planning to have, regardless of theme, keep your community board in the know. This can make it easier for you to plan and can even help you organize your resources better. They may have specified parking areas you weren’t aware of or ways to reserve certain amenities to guarantee they will be available for your party.

Decorating with Flair… While Keeping it Fair

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Decorating is one of the most fun aspects of the holidays. It’s the time of the year when your lawn goes from the same everyday style to a winter wonderland. If you’re in a community with an HOA or are looking to keep everyone in your neighborhood happy, this one’s for you.

Keep it Tasteful

It’s very easy to get carried away with holiday decorations, Christmas and Halloween especially. Keep in mind, that while it’s on your own lawn, everyone in the neighborhood will be subjected to anything you place on display. If your Holiday lights create too much light pollution, you may need to keep them off during respectable hours so as to not wake any of your neighbors up. Lights that blink or are too bright can be subject to local ordinances as well. These rules vary by city or county and violations could result in ticketing and fining.

As tempting as going extreme Holiday decorating is, it’s not worth giving yourself a record.

Talk With Your Neighbors

If you’re new to the area or want to start decorating this year, try asking a community member about decorating policies for your community. Talking with the people who live around you creates a sense of Holiday cheer and helps you stay in good graces with people you could be living next to for a while. It’s not always possible to please everyone but stick with a good balance of your own tastes with your communities.

Community Policies

Does your community have an HOA? Does that HOA prohibit year round decorations, lights, or signage? Some communities are more lenient for the Holidays and are worth the quick chat with your association members to find out. Keep in mind that these rules and regulations are contractually enforceable in your neighborhood.

Keeping the Peace

There are a multitude of ways to celebrate this Holiday season. It may be Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or maybe nothing at all. Many neighborhoods are multi-cultural, and part of being a good neighbor is to respect everyone’s right to celebrate how they choose.

This is the time of year to think about each other.

If you have a theme for your front yard, be polite and kind about your presentation and do your part to keep peace in your neighborhood for the Holiday season.

Bottom Line

The best way to keep your Holiday Decorating stress-free is to research, talk with your neighbors and community members, and to be thoughtful in your planning.

 

Why You Need An Association Management Company

 

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It can be overwhelming to manage community associations. There’s a lot that goes in to making sure a community is at its best and finding an experienced management company can be very beneficial to helping a community succeed and save time, stress, and money.

Essential Facts About Association Management Companies

Association Management Company (n.) is a third party company that saves you a lot of headache by managing the day to day operations for a community’s governance and policies otherwise known as an HOA as well as offer services to make your life easier.

Association Management Companies are not the HOA.

Residents may decide to share responsibilities for maintaining their community and agree on certain rules and proposals. The Homeowners Association is born and the board members are made up of residents within that community to create a budget, handle proposals, and assist with maintenance of common areas, etc. The residents pay dues to the HOA or Community based on a proposed budget.

Association Management Companies are outside of the actual HOA and are responsible for administering and enforcing the community’s policies and guidelines. They also communicate with the board, analyze financials, handle the day to day functions, and perform maintenance of common areas.

They Care.

The overall goal of Association Management Companies is to enhance a community and the homes within it. This is done by paying close attention to the physical aspects, like landscaping and amenities, and by listening to resident needs. Staying up to date on the latest technology offers the best to their clients and the residents within the community.

Association Management Companies Come With A Skilled Team

They have Accountants, Trained Customer Support, Web Designers, IT Specialists and more, devoted to supporting Community Association Managers and their communities. The team keeps up with the education, certifications and accreditations to provide the best service to each community they work with. Some of the ones to look for are:

  • Professional Community Managers (PCAM)
  • Certified Community Manager of Associations (CMCA)
  • Accredited Association Management Companies (AAMC)
  • Association Management Specialists (AMS)

Some Aspects Association Management Companies Take Care Of:

  • Perform regular inspections of the common areas and facilities for condition and maintenance needs.
  • Prepare monthly management reports summarizing significant events and actions.
  • Work with and monitor performance of maintenance workers and confirm they are properly insured.
  • Perform regular inspections of the physical appearance and condition member properties to assess compliance with policies, restrictions, and by-laws.
  • Follow up on complaints of violations or maintenance issues received for the community.
  • Issue violation notices and work to resolve a violation in accordance with guidelines and policies.
  • Provide assistance in obtaining property and liability insurance and in reporting and filing of insurance claims on behalf of the association.

Hiring an Association Management Company Will Give You:

Stress Free Management

Having someone dedicated to answering resident needs, address their concerns, assist with time consuming repairs and appliance replacements takes the stress off resident’s shoulders.

Fewer Legal Issues

Experience and knowledge add a lot to the table when it comes to keeping everything up to code and knowing how to properly plan and budget for maintenance, repairs and disasters to keep your property or community safe and hopefully out of the courtroom.

Great Service for Clients

Community Association Managers are good with people and generally want the best for their clients and the community’s association. This can mean helping you figure out the community taxes or advising you on how to handle certain situations. Experienced management teams will already have a large list of vendors they have good relationships with and make finding a handyman or electrician easy and reliable to hire.

 

Final Thoughts

Investing in association management is a great move and you don’t have maintain your community alone. Scenarios can change from situation to situation and choosing the right management group means everything. Why not contact Leland Management and have a conversation about your community needs?