Frequently Asked Questions
Association management is a distinct field of management as it works to manage common areas of communities while managing the needs of dues-paying members. Members also govern their association through an elected board, along with association committees. Managers for the association are responsible for many of the tasks which include financial management, meeting management, IT management, and project management. Association managers must also be familiar with laws and regulations that pertain only to associations.
An Association Management company is contracted by the community’s Board of Directors to provide a variety of services including but not limited to collecting assessments, maintenance & project management, financial reporting & analysis, addressing owner concerns, and advisement on legal matters among.
The community’s board of directors are a group of individuals (usually property owners) charged with the conduct and management of the community’s affairs. The board of directors are generally elected annual or appointed when a vacancy arises. The board of directors can have a varying number of members and positions, with a minimum of 3 which include President, Treasurer, and Secretary.
A Managing Agent is the person or entity specifically hired to assist the board of directors in enforcing the documents and managing the funds and interests of the association.
The declaration, CCR’s, bylaws, master deed, operating rules, articles of incorporation or any other documents which govern the normal operating procedures of an association.
A set of rules or guidelines regarding the operation of a non-profit corporation such as a Board. Bylaws generally set forth definitions of offices and committees involved with the Board of Directors. They can include voting rights, meetings, notices, and other areas involved with the successful operation of the Association.
The term CC&R refers to ‘Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions.’ A real covenant is a legal obligation imposed in a deed the property upon the buyer to do or not to do something. Many are specific, outlining everything a homeowner can do to the exterior of their home, including the number of non-familial tenants one may have, acceptable colors to re-paint the home, exactly when holiday decorations are allowed up, automobile placement or repair on property, satellite placement, etc.
When a developer plans to divide a parcel of land into condominium units, a master deed must be prepared and legally recorded. The deed will show the division of property into separate units based % ownership, as well as indicate where the common areas will be. As with all deeds, any restrictions to use of the property are also generally noted on the master deed.
Any area of property intended for shared use by the members of an association. This can include pools, clubhouses, landscaping, and exteriors of building (for Condos and Townhomes).
Any area of property that is allocated for the exclusive use of one (or more, but not all) properties but requires community approval for changes. This typically includes windows, doors to the unit, patios, dryer vents, and HVAC’s.
Responsibility for repairs are based on the governing documents of the association. However as a general rule for condominiums and townhomes, the owner is responsible for anything inside their unit, studs out (some associations will cover drywall and some do not), and limited common elements as defined above. The association is responsible for common elements, which usually includes the common grounds (mowing/landscaping), roofs, siding/brick, and parking areas.
The board of directors are voted in annually to make decisions for the community. The Association Management Company (AMC) works at the direction of the board. The AMC can have limited authority to make repairs under a certain monetary value, especially in cases where the work will save the community from undue loss.
Homeowner and Condo associations require homeowners to pay a share of common expenses, usually per-unit (For traditional neighborhoods) or based on % ownership as listed in the Master Deed (For Condominium and Town Home Communities).
Homeowner’s association typically pay a one-time annual assessment while condominium associations pay monthly assessments.