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Here’s where you’ll find recent articles about FirstService Residential, as well as our impact on the areas we serve.

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Before You Raise Assessment Fees, Consider These Cost Containment Strategies

Posted on Thursday July 05, 2018

Your association board is working on next year’s budget. You know how important it is, what it means to the future and financial health of your community. As members of the board, you know that managing the association’s money wisely is the most important commitment you make to your fellow homeowners. So you’ve done everything right: planned and followed all the budgeting steps. Despite your efforts, you’re still staring at the one thing NO association board wants to do: an increase in assessment fees. Before implementing that increase, check out some cost containment strategies that can save your community association money and optimize your operating budget.

Understanding the Fair Housing Act

Posted on Thursday June 21, 2018

All associations are subject to the federal Fair Housing Act (FHA) and its antidiscrimination provisions for protected classes. However, few boards, and even community managers, are familiar enough with the Act to be able to identify the ways they could be exposed to claims of discrimination.

Is Your Staff Properly Trained to Respond to Emergencies?

Posted on Friday May 11, 2018

Whether you live in a high-rise condominium in Buckhead, a gated community in Alpharetta or an active adult community near Lake Lanier, emergencies happen. In previous articles, we’ve talked about what you need to consider for tornadoes and hurricanes. Does your onsite staff know what to do to protect residents and the community’s property in the event of high-rise flooding, a fire or rising water? What about an active shooter?
 

How Your Board Can Help Your Community Prepare for Tornadoes

Posted on Monday May 07, 2018

Tornadoes are fearsome because of their unpredictable nature. Although there are certain weather conditions that make tornadoes more likely, such as severe summer thunderstorms, tornadoes can actually be created by snowstorms and blizzards. They can strike at any time of year and almost any place, even forming on the water and moving onto land.
 

Riding the Storm Out: How Your Property Management Company Can Help You Prepare for Hurricane Season

Posted on Tuesday May 01, 2018

Until recently, only community associations on the east and gulf coasts of the United States worried about preparing for hurricanes. In recent years, hurricanes have become so large that they can affect the entire state of Florida and move well into Georgia – Hurricane Irma in September 2017 proved that! While storms may not be as intense in Georgia, communities may still lose power, flood or sustain landscaping damage.
 

Do You Know How to Pay for Capital Improvements?

Posted on Friday March 30, 2018

There’s a new high-rise going up around the corner. You get their brochure and read that it’s going to have the latest in luxury amenities, energy efficient fixtures, an infinity pool and charging spaces for electric vehicles. Looking around, you realize that your beloved high-rise may need a little updating to keep up with the Joneses. That means capital improvements.

How Can My Community Plan and Execute Capital Improvement Projects?

Posted on Friday March 02, 2018

Nothing lasts forever. That includes elements of your community infrastructure, from pool pumps and front gates to boilers and air conditioning units. Replacement of any of these items, or adding new features to your property, is considered a capital improvement because that work increases the value of the property. Capital improvements shouldn’t be undertaken lightly or on impulse.

Landscape Basics: Getting the Most Out of Your Landscape Design

Posted on Monday February 26, 2018

Trees are an essential and invaluable part of the environment. Not only do they provide us with oxygen to survive and improve air quality, they also add character to landscaping and can increase curb appeal and property values.

How Good Policy Enforcement Can Improve Your Community

Posted on Tuesday January 02, 2018

Your board took the time to create a vision for your community. You’ve gotten buy-in from your residents and crafted policies that support it. Now, how do you enforce those policies to ensure that the vision is supported?  

Does My Community Need a Clear Vision to Drive Policies and Compliance?

Posted on Friday December 08, 2017

As a board member, you want your community to grow and thrive. Having a vision for your community – the aesthetics of it, its brand reputation, the lifestyle services it offers and amenities it provides – is critical to its long-term growth and health. A well-crafted vision will transcend board and resident turnover and keep your community on track by helping your board craft the policies and procedures to support it. 

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