Making efforts to join your Tacoma, WA HOA board can be an all-consuming job, so much so that you forget to think about what comes after it: actually being on the board. Once you’re elected, you may wonder, “now what?” and have questions about stepping into your new role.
Luckily, there are many resources available to help new HOA board members settle into their new jobs. From attending new member orientation to utilizing professional community management services, here are three helpful tips for new HOA board members to keep in mind.
1. Participate in orientation
Your HOA board and HOA management firm want to enable you to succeed in your new role. It will make their job easier as well as yours, so it’s in their best interest to set you up for success.
Attend your board’s orientation for new board members, or ask if your HOA management firm offers an orientation process. They should walk you through the association’s governing documents — most commonly, CC&Rs, bylaws and articles of incorporation — as well as educate you on your role and responsibilities.
Take full advantage of this opportunity by taking notes, asking questions, and engaging with all members of your community association management team. Everyone will be happy to walk you through whatever you want to know and will be appreciative of your proactive interest.
2. Learn HOA community management’s role
Learning more about the board’s role and responsibilities can often lead to even more questions about who is in charge of what. New board members can often be confused by the difference between HOA board members and community association management and who handles which tasks.
The board’s role is primarily to protect and enhance the value of the HOA through decision-making. The board holds a duty of care and loyalty, and board members must fairly enforce all governing documents to ensure residents’ best interests.
Your HOA management firm handles the daily operations of the HOA, putting the board’s decisions into motion. While the board decides how the HOA should proceed, the HOA management company puts these decisions into action and executes them on behalf of the board. This includes coordinating vendors, managing amenities, collecting dues, and more.
Although their roles are different, the HOA management firms work to support the board members every step of the way. Communication and teamwork between both parties are essential for a successful and happy community association.
3. Take advantage of all tools and resources for learning
New member orientation is a valuable first step in taking on this important role, but board members are constantly learning. Utilize any tools and continued education resources provided by your HOA board or community association management firm whenever they’re available.
Resources to utilize include a board member portal, board meeting notes, financials, new vendor contracts, industry trade publications, webinars, digital roundtable panels and more. The more you can learn about your HOA and the industry in general, the more valuable you’ll be to your fellow board members and your community residents.
If you’re a Tacoma, WA board member needing guidance on how to best enable your HOA’s success, look no further than The Management Trust. We’ve been an industry leader for over 30 years, with more than 1,500 communities served nationwide. To learn more about our full range of community management services for Tacoma, WA HOAs, call The Management Trust at (253) 472-0825 or fill out our online contact form today.