Here you will find frequently asked questions and answers about FirstService Residential, our management companies and our commitment to service excellence.
Can I make my assessment/associate payment on line?
Online payments are available! Click the “Make a Payment” button in the top corner of this website and it will take you to the appropriate area of this website where you may pay online.
Do the board members work for FirstService Residential?
No, your board members are volunteers who have been elected to their position by members of your community, and do not work for FirstService Residential.
To whom do I make my check payable?
Your check should be made payable to your Association (e.g.; "ABC Homeowners Association" or "XYZ Condominium Association")
What does the Association do?
The Association is a non-profit corporation managed by a Board of Directors elected by the owners. The Board is responsible for the management of the Association's funds, the enforcement of the deed restrictions, and the maintenance of common area property.
What is the composition and role of the Board of Directors?
Your board is an oversight body composed of volunteers elected by association homeowners. During initial sales and construction phases, the board typically also includes builder or developer representatives.
The board’s fiduciary responsibility to make decisions in the best interest of the community includes ensuring that the CC&Rs and other governing documents are upheld, integrity of common areas is maintained, and community issues are addressed on behalf of the association.
What is the difference between FirstService Residential and my association?
As a Common Interest Development, your association is a legal entity, most often a corporation. It is comprised of and controlled by its members through the election of a board of directors on an annual or semi-annual basis. It is this board of directors, voted in by the homeowners, who control all aspects of the administration of the association. The board of directors are responsible for hiring vendors to service the association, such as a pool vendor to clean pool, and a landscaper to maintain the common area landscaping, an insurance carrier to provide a master insurance policy…and a management company to implement the decisions of the board of directors. FirstService Residential is the professional management company that has been hired by your board of directors to implement the decisions and policies.
What is the difference between the association’s attorney and FirstService Residential’s attorney?
Being two separate legal entities, both the association and FirstService Residential maintain their own legal counsel, and bear the expense of their own legal counsel. The association’s legal counsel is an independent attorney hired by the board of directors to provide guidance and legal opinions on matters relating to the function of the association as a legal entity (often an actual corporation). As this legal service is contracted by the board on behalf of the association as an entity, the attorney answers only to the board of directors and is not intended to provide individual counsel to specific homeowners.
FirstService Residential’s legal counsel is hired by FirstService Residential and is limited to advising FirstService Residential on matters such as internal company policy, and does not play a role in the function of your association.
What is the role of FirstService Residential?
In its leadership capacity, the board of directors is responsible for overseeing the business and administration of the community association, and utilizes FirstService Residential’s services to facilitate management of those responsibilities. FirstService Residential provides support by implementing the board’s policies, operational decisions and directives to help keep you community functioning smoothly.
Who determines the amount of the assessment that the homeowners pay?
In its leadership capacity, the board of directors is responsible for analyzing the ongoing expenses of the community, with the assistance of experts such as their contracted independent Reserve Analyst, and determining the amount of funding necessary to continue to operate the community in accordance with the association’s responsibilities as determined the association’s governing documents.
FirstService Residential’s role in the process is to gather the information necessary for the board to conduct its analysis, and to implement the budget and assessment once decided by the board.
Who determines the rules for the community, such as the parking rules or pool rules?
The association is governed by Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions (CC&Rs), which outline, among other things, the general manner in which the association is to operate. CC&Rs are typically written with a certain amount of generality, which allows the board to provide clarifying Rules & Regulations to the membership as the conditions may require. It is the responsibility of the board to determine the manner in which to interpret the CC&Rs and to create Rules & Regulations for the community. Additionally, it is the responsibility of the board to determine what constitutes a violation of those rules.
FirstService Residential’s role is to implement the governing documents (including the Rules & Regulations), at the instruction of the board and to the extent instructed by the board.