If you live in Seattle, WA and need help with HOA management, you should know your options. Here are tips for choosing a HOA management service.
Having a successful beautiful housing community where the residents feel safe and heard is the goal of every property manager. The HOA plays a vital part in bringing everything together and handling the needs of that community.
Property management is both a delicate and intricate process that covers a wide range of issues from repairs, collecting dues, maintenance, and handling resident disputes.
It is in your best interest to have an experienced and professional HOA management service to ensure success.
Here at 7 tips for choosing the best service for your community in the Seattle area.
1. Develop a Recruiting Team
When taking on the task of hiring an HOA management company, it helps to start with a recruiting team. This is usually made up of current board members and a few resident volunteers.
This small diverse group of people will be familiar with the community and its residents. Have them meet to discuss the specific needs and unique challenges being faced.
This will provide the framework when interviewing potential management companies. They must show confidence in being able to address the concerns of your community.
2. Create a Budget
Before contacting potential HOA companies, you need to establish a budget.
There are many services provided by HOA management teams and you must decide on the ones you need and others you can do without.
You may wish to keep some duties with the HOA Board and hire out only part-time services. Or it may be in the best interest of the community to go with a full-time operation.
Keep in mind that cheaper isn’t always better. Sometimes you get what you pay for. You want the highest quality within your budget range.
Once you have determined the level of service required and put together a proposed budget, it is time to start your search.
3. Inquire About Their Experience
The key to anyone doing a good job versus a great job is their level of skill and experience. Hiring and working with an HOA management team is no different.
If your community needs legal or financial services, the company should have expertise in these areas. If collections are a problem, what proven methods can they bring to the table? HOA management experience keeps the business end working effectively.
It is a good idea to inquire about the number and size of other communities they manage. You need to ensure they have the time and employee power to take care of your property and the residents.
Also, ask them to provide a comprehensive list of all the services they provide and a detailed pricing structure.
4. HOA Management Service: References and Reviews
When hiring someone to perform a service, you must always check their references and reviews.
Contact the HOA board for the other properties they manage to get an idea for their communication style and response time. Are they reliable and do what they say they will do? Is the community better off financially and happier since they started?
Research any past grievances or complaints filed against them. Be cautious when investigating to remember some people are difficult to please and will give a bad review without merit.
Look for trends or repeated issues and follow up with any credible concerns. If you still have questions, take them directly to the HOA management to see if all problems have been resolved.
5. Are They Familiar With the Area
An HOA management company can come with great reviews, but don’t forget the importance of where they are located.
You want your residents and property protected and managed by a local team dedicated to knowing the area’s particular concerns and needs. In addition, they should be close enough to reach the property in case of an urgent situation.
They must also demonstrate a working knowledge of all local laws and regulations. From time to time a difficult decision may arise that requires a good understanding of current legal guidelines.
You need your HOA management services to protect your interests and avoid fines or troubles with the law.
6. What Services Do They Provide
Not all HOA management companies offer the same services and expertise. When considering a new HOA team, it is important to understand their strengths and how they can help your community.
In addition to collecting dues, do they have additional bookkeeping and accounting capabilities to aid in balancing and allocating funds? Are they able to assist in reserve funding for the future stability of the HOA? How strong are their administrative skills?
Does their team offer long term planning strategies? What do they bring on the customer service side to address and diffuse resident challenges? What provisions do they suggest for maintenance and upkeep?
Do they have an emergency plan or the ability to handle a situation after hours and in a timely manner?
Depending on the list created by the recruitment team you may not need all of these, or you may need more. Take the time to discuss at length all areas of concern so everyone is on the same page.
7. Do They Have a List of Reliable Vendors
Another huge benefit of an established and experienced HOA management company is the list of vendors and workers they bring with them.
A reliable property management team has a host of top-notch contractors ready to come in and fill the needs of the community. Plumbers, HVAC, lawn maintenance and landscaping, general contractors, and the list goes on.
With a quality HOA management company comes quality workers. Both of those equal a beautiful property and satisfied residents.
A Strong Community Starts With Great Leadership
Residents look to the property association to provide a safe, well-organized, and beautiful community. They want property values to remain high and problems to remain low.
The best avenue to accomplish these goals is with an HOA management service. The board needs a partner to achieve financial stability as well as forward growth.
For more information on how we can provide you with exceptional HOA or property management services, please reach out.