Like a lot of things in life, communication is the key to success and better opportunities. In the world of property management, communication is not just the key but the answer to keeping the property in optimum shape and those involved satisfied (like the Association’s Board as well as the tenants and the owners).
From various maintenance issues to keeping the homeowners in the loop, property management and communication should be a strong partnership that is constantly at work to keep everyone connected and on the same page.
Here are a few steps that you can take to make sure that you are effectively communicating at all times:
Set an Agenda before the board meeting.
When working with HOA’s, it is imperative to set an agenda before meetings to discuss any issues anyone has. This can also help the conversation to stay on a steady flow and keep everything organized and timely.
Follow the established communication process.
Homeowners must have trust in their property manager and feel that they are being kept in the loop. There are times when HOA members or renters may try to get around you, and this can cause a delay in any process that needs to happen and can ultimately lead to a breakdown in communication.
For times like this, a foundation of communication must be established for your sake and the HOA. You should be an acting mediator in times where certain property-related disputes arise and be the one to respond to any concerns. This will help things get done faster and more efficiently if everyone understands this process clearly and sees that it works.
Be informed about your agreement.
Thoroughly understand the agreement that you signed and the responsibilities that the HOA expects from you. It is important to have a clear understanding so that you know what is within your scope and what is not when things are asked of you. This can eliminate issues between you and the board if you are asked to do something that has not been detailed in the original agreement.
Put everything in writing.
The best way to keep the communication process intact is to document the things discussed. Instead of picking up the phone, opt for an email (or follow up a call with an email). This will help you keep track of the conversation, what was said, and what was asked or agreed upon. A consistent paper trail to advocate for you, especially when dealing with HOA’s, is important. Emails have the advantage of always being very easy to track — which is beneficial to everyone.
Whatever form of communication you use, try to make it consistent. Otherwise, things can get lost in the shuffle of it all. We’re here to help you navigate the communication waters. Give us a call!