How to Prepare Your Community for a Natural Disaster

Compared to states annually ravaged by hurricanes, tornadoes, and other natural disasters, Colorado homeowners often feel that they’re completely safe from these occurrences. However, Aurora and the Greater Denver area were rated as very high risk for property damage from natural hazards, according to a national study conducted by ATTOM Data Solutions. No matter where in the country your HOA is located, it’s always in your best interest to create an emergency preparedness plan for your community. 

Gather Contact Information for All Members

Emergency situations, whether natural disasters or not, can often require you to need to contact your homeowners right away. You may need to order your residents to evacuate, or you may need to notify homeowners who are out of town about any property damage they’ve suffered. Whatever the reason, it’s crucial that you have contact information as well as secondary emergency contact info for all of your HOA’s households. Consider creating a digital database that can be accessed by all board members as well as your HOA property management company. This will make it possible to contact your members regardless of any property damage that may restrict access to paper records. 

Create an Emergency Response Plan

Emergency situations naturally elicit feelings of panic which may result in disorganization or even chaos without a proper plan in place. No matter what you feel your community’s risk level is, it’s imperative that you create a disaster response plan in case of an emergency. Put together an emergency response team made up of volunteers within the community. Establish an off-site meeting point, and create a voicemail script detailing this information that can be implemented quickly in case of a disaster. When trouble hits, it’s highly likely that many homeowners’ first response will be to call your HOA’s mainline. Detailing all necessary information in a voicemail will help spread the information needed to keep homeowners safe without requiring staff to answer the phones. You should also encourage each member to create emergency preparedness kits and make an exit plan for each of their individual households.

Budget for Emergencies

When disaster strikes, it’s highly likely that property damage will occur and your association will incur costs for repairing communal areas. Ensure that your community’s disaster plans extend beyond evacuation routes and include financial plans as well. Create a list of financial priorities in case of a disaster, and establish methods for sourcing additional funds if necessary. Unexpected instances like these are just one reason why your HOA should budget in a way that allows it to maximize its reserves. Utilizing an HOA property management firm and their financial services is just one way to ensure that you’re making the best financial decisions for your community possible. 

If you’re an Aurora HOA board member in need of independent financial services or full-service HOA property management, The Management Trust is the industry’s premier choice. We’ve served HOAs throughout the country for more than 30 years, and we’ve guided associations of all sizes and locations through natural disaster planning and recovery. Our industry expertise makes us an invaluable resource to more than 1,500 community associations throughout several states, and we’d be more than happy to assist your community as well. Give us a call today at (303) 750-0994 to find out more about our services and what makes us different.