Category Archives: Amenities


Upgrading Common Area Access Control: The Benefits of RFID Tags and Cell Phone Proximity Detection

As homeowner association (HOA) board members, you are always looking for ways to improve the security and convenience of your community. One area that has seen significant advancements in recent years is common area access control systems.

Gone are the days of traditional key-based systems, as new technology has emerged to enhance the security and ease of use of these systems. Two such innovations are RFID tags and cell phone proximity detection.

RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tags are small chips that can be embedded in key fobs or cards that residents carry. When a resident approaches a controlled access point, such as a gate or door, they simply hold their tag near a reader, and the access point will unlock automatically. This eliminates the need for residents to fumble with keys or remember access codes, making entry and exit much quicker and more convenient.

In addition to RFID tags, some access control systems now offer cell phone proximity detection. This works by using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology to detect when a resident’s smartphone is in close proximity to an access point. The access point can then be programmed to automatically unlock when the resident’s phone is in range, eliminating the need for them to physically interact with the access point.

One advantage of cell phone proximity detection is that it eliminates the need for residents to carry a separate tag or fob. It also offers an added level of security, as residents can control access to their smartphone through a secure app, which allows them to easily revoke access if their phone is lost or stolen. Furthermore, cell phone proximity detection has the added benefit of homeowners being less likely to share their phone with non-residents, thus mitigating entry of unauthorized visitors.

Another benefit of these new access control systems is that they are highly customizable. HOAs can set different levels of access for different areas, such as restricted access to certain amenities for non-residents. They can also program access points to automatically lock and unlock at specific times, making it easier to manage the security of the community.

Finally, these new systems often come with robust reporting capabilities, which allow HOAs to track access to different areas, monitor usage patterns, and quickly respond to security incidents. This data can also be used to optimize the management of common areas, such as ensuring that amenities are being used to their full potential.

RFID tags and cell phone proximity detection are powerful tools for HOAs looking to enhance the security and convenience of their communities. These systems offer a higher level of customization, reporting capabilities, and security, making them an excellent option for HOAs looking to upgrade their access control systems. It is important to work with a trusted vendor when implementing these new access control systems to ensure that you are getting the best solution for your community. With the right system in place, you can enhance the security and convenience of your community and provide peace of mind for your residents.


The Growing Popularity of Pickleball: Should Your HOA Retrofit Tennis Courts for Pickleball Play?

As pickleball continues to gain popularity, many communities are considering retrofitting their existing tennis courts to make them playable for pickleball. This raises the question: will pickleball replace tennis on your HOA’s courts? While there is no one-size-fits-all answer, there are several factors that HOA Boards should consider when making this decision.

First, it’s important to understand the growing popularity of pickleball. According to a report by the Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA), pickleball participation grew by 21.3% in 2020, making it one of the fastest-growing sports in the United States. The USA Pickleball Association also conducted a survey that found that pickleball is popular across all age groups, with the majority of players being over the age of 55.

Given the growth of pickleball and its popularity amongst older adults, it’s no surprise that many communities, especially active adult communities, have dedicated pickleball courts. In fact, many of these communities have made the decision to convert existing tennis courts into pickleball courts to meet the demand of their residents.

But what should HOA Boards consider when retrofitting their existing tennis courts for pickleball play? One important factor is the condition of the existing tennis courts. If the tennis courts are in poor condition or in need of repair, it may be more cost-effective to replace them with new pickleball courts rather than retrofitting them.

Another important factor to consider is the estimated cost of retrofitting the existing tennis courts for pickleball play. While the cost can vary depending on the condition of the existing courts and the type of modifications required, it can be significant. The cost of converting a single tennis court to a pickleball court can range from $3,000 to $10,000 or more, depending on the scope of the modifications required. Working with qualified contractors for an accurate cost estimate can help HOA Boards make informed decisions.

It’s also important to consider the needs and preferences of the community members. If the majority of the community members are tennis players or prefer tennis over pickleball, it may not make sense to retrofit the existing courts. On the other hand, if the community has a growing interest in pickleball, retrofitting the existing courts can help meet this demand and provide a new recreational opportunity for community members. Consider a community survey to determine such interest, the results may surprise you.

Finally, HOA Boards should consider the impact on property values. While it’s difficult to predict the exact impact, it’s worth noting that having a variety of recreational amenities can make a community more attractive to potential homebuyers and increase property values.

Retrofitting existing tennis courts for pickleball play is a decision that HOA Boards should consider carefully. By considering the condition of the existing courts, the estimated cost, the needs and preferences of the community members, and the potential impact on property values, the Board can make an informed decision about whether to retrofit their existing tennis courts for pickleball play.