A well-maintained community landscape helps to increase owners’ enjoyment of their property and enhance the investment value in their home. Many condominium associations encourage residents to get more involved. Although landscaping committees are not a requirement, forming one may alleviate the stress and workload of the general association board. Regardless of the size of your community’s common areas, or the dollar amount of your landscape budget, a committee formed with the sole purpose of watching over your landscape can prove to be an asset to your association.
There are a variety of ways to start your landscaping committee. First, determine which type of committee is needed, standing or ad hoc. A standing committee, formed to last throughout the year, meets on a regular basis and handles ongoing landscape needs. An Ad hoc committee is formed to address a specific project or issue and is designed to exist for the duration of the project.
Prior to appointing volunteers to the landscape committee, the Board of Directors should determine specific guidelines for the committee to keep things under control and ensure all parties are happy. Once appointed, the committee members should hold formal meetings on a regular basis to discuss their findings. Some responsibilities often assigned to Landscape Committees include:
- Creating recommendations for the Board on landscaping improvements.
- Obtaining proposals from two or three landscape companies covering the scope of work for a project.
- Evaluating proposals and checking references.
- Expressing the community’s desires to the landscaper and/or walk the property with the landscape provider.
- Inspecting the work performed by the landscape provider and suggesting additions and improvements as needed.
- Providing updates and feedback to the Board on landscaping and grounds maintenance issues.
While the landscape committee does not have the authority to act without the Board’s approval, they are still very important to the association. The volunteers that serve on the committee do so for the benefit the community as a whole. Their primary responsibility is to preserve and maintain property value and the results of those efforts will be a clean, safe, and enjoyable place to live.