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  • Cyber Security Part Two: Board Member Tips for Keeping Your Community Association Safe

    In part one of this two-part series, we discussed the importance of cyber security to your community association and the steps that residents can take to protect themselves and their association. In this article, we look at your board’s responsibility in preventing cyber attacks.
  • Earthquake Preparedness Tips for Your Community Association

    As unpredictable as earthquakes can be, your community association should be prepared in case you ever feel the unmistakable rumble of a tremor. Here’s what you need to know.
  • Effective Tips to Enhance Your Building Lobby Design

    As a Board member, you want your building’s lobby to be aesthetically pleasing and inviting, but also safe and functional – after all, as the hub of your building, it provides essential services and can even become a social gathering place for residents and guests. So if your building lobby isn’t as attractive or functional as it could be – and doesn’t portray the impression you’d like it to – we have some suggestions that can help.
  • Eight Roles You’ll Master as Community Association President

    Serving as a homeowner or community association board president is an honor, a privilege and an experience that many across North America take great satisfaction in. But before you make the leap from resident to board member, it’s key to understand exactly what you’ll be getting yourself into, and we can help. The good news is, the variety of tasks and skills that the position entails certainly keeps the job interesting!
  • Electronic Voting: Can an HOA Board Vote By Email?

    For a growing number of community associations across the United States and Canada, statute changes are making electronic voting a possibility for boards. If your state or province permits online voting – or will soon – does that mean that your board should make this option available to homeowners in your community?
  • Emergency Preparedness Planning: Keeping Calm in a Crisis

    No board ever wants to find itself in the midst of an emergency, but they happen. Whether you face an outbreak of illness, an earthquake, a hurricane, a fire, the impact of any devastating event can be minimized by good emergency preparedness planning.
  • Tips for Establishing Pet Policy in Your Association

    Does your community allow pets? What types? How many? Are there limits on size? If you live in a pet-friendly community, it’s important that your association board set boundaries to keep order within your community. Many of the issues that become problems in pet-friendly communities have very little to do with the pets–after all, they can’t clean up after themselves. Your neighbor’s dog could be your best friend too, as long as your neighbor makes sure his pet is on its best behavior. Follow our list of ways you can create and implement pet policy that will help resolve any pet-related issues and ensure all residents are respectful of the community. Keep in mind, when crafting policy about any issue, it’s important to clearly communicate that policy, and the consequences for violating it, to all community residents and association members.
  • Fallon Describes Emergency Storm Relief on Fox Business’ Cavuto

    On October 28, the eve of Superstorm Sandy’s one-year anniversary, Fox Business News aired a powerful segment featuring Chuck Fallon, FirstService Residential CEO.
  • 5 High-Rise Fire Safety Tips for Your Community

    Living in a high-rise, condominium or co-op certainly has its perks. You get the convenient location, the dramatic views, attentive concierge services and a range of amenities. However, vertical living also means added challenges when it comes to fire safety. Fortunately, there are measures that both your association board and residents can take to improve safety.
  • 5 Reasons Board Members Go Back to School

    You’ve just been elected to your HOA or condo association board. Congratulations! Now you can celebrate...with some time back in the classroom.
  • What Does a Secretary of a Board Do?

    Every board of directors, whether for a Fortune 500 company or your community association, needs a great secretary. The secretary is responsible for maintaining those records accurately, including meeting minutes, bylaws and membership records.
  • Five Steps HOA Board Members Can Take To Identify and Resolve Conflict

    You are serving on a homeowner association (HOA) or community association board and discussing hiring a new lawn care provider. Seems simple enough, right? Oh, except that there is a bitter divide between several members arguing about two competing companies.
  • Five Tips for Homeowners Association Parking Rules

    Parking is one of the most common challenges for homeowners associations (HOAs). It seems, regardless of the type of community, the same parking situations happen to us all. To help keep misunderstandings and violations to a minimum, follow these five tips to manage your HOA’s parking policy.
  • How to Create the Right Board Member Dynamics for your HOA

    The greatest strength of your board is the diverse perspectives of all of its members. Unfortunately, sometimes this can also present the biggest challenges.
  • Four Policies Your High-Rise Association Should Formalize Right Now

    High-rise living often appeals to many people for the wealth of amenities, concierge-level services and unique culture. But with this lifestyle comes challenges. Close quarters and the need for residents to exercise mutual respect can sometimes lead to friction and conflict – this is when formal policies need to come into play. These policies, rather than being hindrances, are a tool for creating harmony among residents. The challenge is getting there – many of the major issues residents face are complex and require the help of a property management company. A great company not only has experience, but also a vast knowledge of the law and a sense for what works best for residents.
  • Four Tips for Establishing Board Member Succession in Your Community

    Thriving business organizations plan for succession. It’s built into their corporate strategy – team members with potential are identified early on, and then groomed for the leadership positions they’ll someday hold.
  • How To Avoid Common Board Member Mistakes at Your Community Association

    Learning from other board members’ experiences is a great way to avoid making some of the more common mistakes. Here, we discuss four of the common mistakes that board members make and offer recommendations for handling the issues differently.
  • HOA Elections: How To Make Your Vote Count In Your Community

    According to Community Associations Institute , more than 68 million Americans live in 338,000 managed communities. In Canada, approximately one in eight people live in a condominium or strata corporation of some kind, totaling about 1.2 million owner-occupied dwellings as reported by Statistics Canada . Collectively, these homeowners spend tens of billions of dollars to maintain their communities. Each community is governed by an elected board of volunteer homeowners selected through an HOA elections process. Proactive involvement in your community begins with voting for board membership.
  • How Defining HOA Leaders’ Rights and Responsibilities Creates Happy Communities

    Ready for more happiness? Last week, we described how when residents understand their rights and responsibilities, it goes a long way to creating a happy community. Well, in our never-ending quest to build and enhance community happiness, we’re back with Part 2 for homeowners association leaders. Here’s the scoop – when Board members (and property managers, if the community is professionally managed) have a thorough understanding of their rights and responsibilities, it helps to create an inviting community that is effectively managed, well-maintained and pretty darn happy.
  • How Defining Residents’ Rights and Responsibilities Creates Happy HOA Communities

    Is your community happy? It’s pretty easy to tell if you’re living in a community that is beautiful, harmonious, properly managed and well, happy. But what actually creates a happy HOA community? It may seem like a complicated formula, but it all boils down to this: a clear understanding by both community residents and homeowners association leadership of their rights and responsibilities – and each other’s.
  • How Your HOA Board Can Ensure Great Communication

    Great communication is more than just loose talk, especially when it comes to homeowners, HOA board members and property management companies exchanging information, thoughts and ideas. When communication is done well, challenges get faced, questions get answered and community spirit becomes stronger. So what goes into that mix for good communication?
  • How HOA Boards Can Influence Public Policy

    As a member of your HOA board, you know the value of your association. It serves an essential function for creating rewarding lifestyles for residents, protecting and enhancing property values, and much, much more. And yet some legislators and decision-makers aren’t as familiar with these benefits as you are. Unfortunately, sometimes these are the individuals that have a hand in creating the policies and laws that directly affect communities, associations, and residents. We’ve paired that insight with information from our own experts to arrive at five key areas of focus when it comes to how HOA Boards can influence public policy. Here they are.
  • All You Need to Know About Using Social Media to Build Community

    Social media can be a phenomenal marketing and communications tool for your community association! It’s a great way to inform residents, keep them connected and strengthen their loyalty. But you need to put a strategy behind your community’s social media presence.
  • How to Choose the Best Property Management Company - 10 Questions You Need to Ask Today

    How do you determine which property management company will provide you with the best service? Here are 10 questions that you should ask when consulting with property or homeowner association (HOA) management companies to help you make the important decision.
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