Here’s a quick look at the articles we’re developing. Some will go to video on YouTube, some will go to audio on Podbean, and some will go to text on our mailing list. All will appear here on the web site in some form, with links to all the available media.
- Levels of HOA Hell — There’s plenty for association members to be pissed off about, but there’s a wide continuum ranging from “they keep asking me to cut my grass” to “our treasurer just embezzled hundreds of thousands of dollars.” We’ll help you sort out just where you are in the grand scheme of HOA demons.
- What’s That Charge? — You might be surprised when a charge is added to your HOA account… but you should never have to wonder “what does that mean?” We’ll press the issue on why having a complete and freely available Fee Schedule is not only a good idea… but should be mandatory.
- Maintaining Home Values: An HOA Responsibility? — You hear it all the time: “One of the responsibilities of the HOA is to help maintain property values.” We’ll take a deep dive into whether this is a real requirement that supports many of the HOAs actions, or just something many HOAs and management companies use to apply pressure to members.
- Your Association’s Tone of Voice — The communication from many HOAs is often written by their management companies, and the board and officers don’t take a look at “how it sounds”. There’s a message that needs to be delivered, but it should treat you like a respected member of the community, not like a fugitive from justice. We’ll talk about ways the association – the board and it’s members – can revise their letters, notices, and other communications to make them more neighbor-friendly.
- Board and Officers: What’s the Difference? — Most discussions about HOAs talks about the board — the Board of Directors — as if they’re the only people who should ever make a decision about association activities. Truth is, the board should only exercise decision-making authority at the regular (and occasional special) board meetings… and almost never get directly involved in between. Officers, on the other hand, should have some level of day-to-day contact with the members, and make themselves available to help resolve issues and communicate. If the same people are both Board and Officers, how do you separate their duties? We’ll examine how this is generally done in non-profit corporations outside the HOA industry, and how this can be applied to your association.
- Can We Just Disband? — We know you’re busy. We know many of you just want the HOA to go away. But I guarantee your association is here to stay, because the only way to get rid of it is for everyone to participate! We’ll discuss why participation is key, no matter what you think of the HOA, and ways to help get interest without requiring lots of people’s precious time. And we’ll discuss the difficult – but not impossible – process for officially shutting down your HOA.
- I just Moved In; What Do You Mean, I Have to Plant a Tree? — It happens in almost every community: Someone who moves in gets a notice within the first few months that they need to o something to bring their yard into compliance with the community rules. And they’ve done a good job of maintaining their yard the way it was when they moved in. But now they’re being told “Your yard should have had a tree in it.” We’ll give you some guidance on how to go about addressing the issue. You might even be able to get your association to help you.
The list of potential articles is long and varied… but feel free to comment on this page with any suggestions you have.