As a homeowner and member of a community association, there are regular meetings to attend. There are regular board meetings, annual meetings, and emergency meetings, and in order to keep the association running smoothly, participation is key, as decisions can impact property values.
Every homeowners association is required by law to hold an annual meeting per the association’s governing documents. It is at this meeting that homeowners can receive the next year’s budget, elect the board of directors, and listen to committee reports. This is also the time when homeowners receive updates about amendments to bylaws.
Attendance is important, as association decisions have a financial impact on your life. This is the opportunity to ask questions and participate in community discussions. For example, proposed changes in the budget will have a direct impact on your dues. Most homeowner associations require a quorum to vote, meaning that a specified number or percentage of members are in attendance or have a proxy.
Every HOA has an elected board of directors; typically these are fellow homeowners but there may also be directors appointed by the property developer.
In San Diego, homeowners association management includes regular meetings with the board of directors, which are open to all community members. HOA members will be given notice in writing of when the board meeting will take place, and the association will typically hold meetings monthly or quarterly, depending on the size of the community and the frequency with which larger issues arise.
Business meetings follow some type of parliamentary procedure and only cover pre-planned items. Association members are given a chance to speak in a forum setting. The board guides the association and oversees the manager, policies, and operations. You may also see dispute resolutions and future planning.
The annual meeting is just that—once a year. There may be occasions during the year when certain business matters or other issues come up that need to be dealt with in a timely fashion. Special meetings can only discuss the topics placed in the meeting notice—any other issues not stated in the notice will have to be tabled for another meeting.
One meeting you may receive notice of is the executive session, which, unlike general board meetings, prohibits general association members from attending. This is because executive sessions deal with sensitive topics such as legal issues, personnel problems, or delinquencies.
Sometimes there come circumstances that require immediate attention and notice cannot necessarily be given. Emergency meetings can be held on the phone, in person, or even via email.
A thriving HOA includes support and participation in meetings, which keep you up-to-date on issues that will impact your property. Knowing what to expect at these meetings is the first step in making sure things keep running smoothly