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The Power of “I Don’t Know” as a Board Member

Have you ever had a question that you didn’t know the answer to? If you said yes, thank you for being honest.

All too often, questions are asked, especially to an HOA board, that many don’t have an answer to, or they don’t have a full understanding of the issue themselves and therefore are very little help.

In this case, one of two things can happen: you or the board members can make something up that may sound good and make you look knowledgeable, but it may not be the right answer.


You could put a pin in it until you can talk to someone who knows or look over the governing documents & find the answer.

While it might be easier (and faster) to do the first option, is that really in the interest of the community?

Remembering What Matters

When you became a board member, you probably read over quite a bit of information ranging from financial records to the mission statement. While each mission statement is unique to that specific board, most have one thing in common: do what is in the best interest of the community and homeowners.

When you take the easy road to tell a homeowner or anyone else that is asking bogus information, it is not fulfilling that mission, and it could also cause problems for you and the board later on. 

Legal Ramifications

Because an HOA is an actual organization with certain legal requirements attached to it, giving false information about the HOA, its dealings, its rules, etc., is one of the worst things you can do. 

Depending on the question at-hand, there are potential legal complications of getting an answer wrong, and you build more trust simply by being honest.

Instead of guessing, take the sound road and don’t be afraid to say, “I don’t know.” In fact, “I don’t know” is one of the best answers you can give to cover both you, the board, and even the homeowner.

You never know what one false answer could cause. So, stay on the side of the truth and don’t be afraid to be honest. We’re here for you. Don’t hesitate to give us a call if you have any questions about your HOA.

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