August 19, 2021 - BY Admin

Board Meetings: A Well-Oiled Machine

Board meetings are the heart and soul of an HOA; it’s how the community is able to get things done and move toward the overall goals that the community has in place. Poorly run board meetings can cause a community to derail completely from its objectives or accomplishing anything at all. Understanding the basic best practices of how an effective Board meeting should operate is vital to the success of an HOA.

What is a Board meeting?

Board meetings are designed to take care of regular business and the welfare of community assets, and should be held in places conducive to business — large conference rooms, with enough seating, lighting, access to bathrooms, etc. HOA members are allowed to attend as spectators or an audience but not as active participants and should not allowed to sit at the table with the Board. Community members can participate in a discussion beforehand to allow members to ask any questions so that they understand what is going on in the meetings. It’s important to have transparency, so allowing an audience helps eliminate suspicion and rumors of foul play. Meetings are not a place for community gossip. Stay on topic.

What are the basic rules?

  1. One person speaks at a time.
  2. Speaker must stay on topic.
  3. Allow everyone an opportunity to speak or have a turn to speak.
  4. Motion, second, and vote are required for all decisions.
  5. Once voted upon, the discussion on the topic is over.

Meetings should be a place for action and not debate. The debate should be done beforehand via an established agenda that contains arguments for both sides of each issue being presented for voting and is shared in advance so that Board members may formulate their position prior to the meeting. This keeps things running smoothly and the Board running like a well oiled machine.

It’s important to have structure and rules for these meetings, which the Chair enforces. This allows for meetings to be productive and not to devolve into chaotic debates that prevent anything from getting done. A well-structured and organized Board meeting allows a community to continuously move forward toward the community’s overall goals.


So You Need A Newsletter

What exactly goes in a newsletter?

We’ve talked a lot about how newsletters are a great way to deliver information to your community members to ensure everyone is informed and knows what is going on while building a sense of community. Transparency and great communication are key to maintaining a well-oiled community.

We’ve put together a helpful list of items that should be taken into consideration when it comes time to create the Community Newsletter.

Inspire & Build Your Community

Get HOA members to become participants rather than observers. Offer opportunities to do that on community social events. Make sure events, activities, and volunteer opportunities are well publicized.

Consistent Content & Layout

Each newsletter should look relatively the same when it comes to the layout. No one enjoys playing a guessing game when it comes to finding important information. If edits to the layout need to take place, make sure they make sense and are easily understood.

Repeat Important & Pertinent Information

Just because some information was included in the previous newsletter doesn’t mean every single member has seen it or that it is no longer relevant. Keep important and relevant community information and announcements a constant so that they are easily accessible for both existing and new community members.

Start Strong & Keep Things Short

Information hierarchy is important in all aspects of life. Similar to a newspaper, most people will look at the headlines on the first page or two to determine if there is anything worthwhile to stop and read; this is where you want to keep your important information. It’s also important to keep things short and sweet as to ensure that all the main points are covered quickly before readers’ minds wander.

Physical & Digital

We’ve stated before that email is a great way to get in touch with your community members. Make both physical and digital copies of the newsletter available to your members so that they can access it even while out of town.

And lastly, keep an archive of all your newsletters. This allows the community to pull from past articles on topics that need to be shared again without the need to completely rehash from scratch. Even if your community already has a template in place, look for items that can be tweaked or improved upon.