Category Archives: Condo Property Management

How to Create a Winning Social Media Strategy for Your HOA

Social media can be a key tool to bringing a community together and getting the right information out to your neighborhood. However, perfecting social media isn’t as simple as picking a platform and starting your first post.

In order for social media to be effective and follow legal guidelines for public entities like an association, a social media strategy should be your first step towards implementing social media into your business practices.

Here’s a look into what you and your HOA management team should look into before writing your first set of winning social media posts.

Create a Designated Management Committee

It’s always helpful to have a team of people or one skilled person, dedicated to managing your social media accounts. This helps to prevent any miscommunications, posting snafus, and overall social media disorganization.

Remember, your management committee doesn’t necessarily have to be social media experts, but they should have an upbeat attitude and understand the legalities involved with posting on social media as an association.

If your volunteer social media personnel need some pointers on what they can and cannot post on social media as the HOA, your association management team can help educate and inform.

Use it as a Means of Positive Communication

There’s already enough negative information out there on social media channels. So, make sure that your association’s pages encourage positive communication. This all starts with the type of content that you choose to publish.

Bring your community together outside of standard community updates with fun and catchy posts that promote:

  • The local yard of the month
  • Upcoming social events
  • A “Meet the Board” post for new board members, etc.

Positive communication is rewarded with positive community interaction. The more your community interacts with your social media pages in the correct ways, the closer your association will get towards achieving its goals as an organized, welcoming community.

Avoid Posting Opinions as an Admin

Everyone has an opinion on a subject, and sometimes opinions can clash and create conflict. Conflict is something you always want to avoid on your social media channels. While owners in an HOA are welcome to post opinions on the facts you present, striving to keep your social media as informative and neutral as possible is key to keeping your owners comfortable with your platform.

Never Discuss Formal HOA Business

Formal HOA business like official meeting discussions and individual HOA violations are something that should never be shared on social media.

Formal HOA business typically involves confidential or personal owner information that isn’t appropriate to air out on a public forum like Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Keep your social pages fun and informative, while leaving any formal business to official meetings or mailers to your owners.

Make Social Media a Positive Association Tool with Goodwin & Company

If you are ready to start a social media account for your association but need some guidance on crafting a successful strategy, turn to the experts at Goodwin & Company. Our association management team is well-versed in both online and offline HOA management best practices.

We have served communities across the Dallas area since 1991 and are ready to help you. Contact us today to learn more about our services or to find out how to partner up with our team.

5 Things to Know Before Home Renovations in an HOA

Spring is just around the corner and many homeowners in HOA communities may have some big renovation plans to spice up the look of their homes. Keep in mind, that even something as seemingly simple as replacing a front yard gate is a renovation that must be well-planned.

Homeowners across the state hear horror stories about working on a large home renovation and mid-way, the HOA board comes calling to shut the unauthorized project down and potentially issue a fine. However, there is always a preferred approach to a project that reduces the risk of violations during the process.

Here’s a look at five actions homeowners can take in order to get their next project off on the right foot.

Read Your HOA CC&Rs

Your association’s CC&Rs are the official guidebook to the rules and regulations that govern your community. An up-to-date document should be able to let you know if your plans fall under the required community standards.

Even if you think you understand the legalities of your planned renovation, it’s always best to reach out to your association’s management team to receive a concrete answer prior to moving forward.

They will be able to help you prepare any required documentation that you’ll need to submit during the official approval process from the board.

Seek Approval Before Starting Your Project

The one item we can’t stress more about is that you should always seek approval before starting a project. Your HOA most likely requires prior approval for the groundbreaking of any renovation.

Failure to seek approval will likely result in a violation notice, fine, or the complete cancellation of your project.

Keep in mind, that there are some projects that don’t always require approval. These can include the following individual property projects:

  • Interior wall painting
  • Appliance replacements (i.e. dishwasher, refrigerator)
  • Updating cabinets and countertops

Once again, your HOA management team can help answer any appropriate questions you may have about the request.  The general rule of thumb is to submit a request for any exterior alterations.  When in doubt, seek the approval of the HOA.

Obtain Permits

Depending on the extent of your renovations, your association and city may require permits in order for the job to start. HOA approval for a project does not assume approval from the City, so even if you have approval from the HOA, it is your responsibility to make sure you obtain all necessary approvals and permits from your City.  Typically, your contractor can handle this requirement or you could leave it with our Project Coordination Experts.

Be a Courteous Neighbor

Finally, please let your neighbors know when your project is slated to start. Sometimes this little act of courtesy can avoid any awkward situations or HOA complaints to the board that could put a stall on your project’s progress.

Goodwin & Company Ensures All Community Renovations Work for Everyone

If your board needs help reviewing and approving owner renovation requests, Goodwin & Company has the tools and experience to speed up the process. We are association management experts who completely understand renovation regulations.

Trust us to serve as a great resource for both the board and homeowners during the development of passion projects. We are ready to help take the stress out of board decisions.

Contact us today to learn more about our services.

How to Resolve Common Parking Issues in Your HOA

Your homeowner’s association should be a place where owners can comfortably park their cars and have ample parking opportunities for their guests when company arises. However, without proper HOA managed rules and regulations in place, parking can easily become a hassle within an HOA community.

In order to prevent common parking issues like crowded streets and overflowing driveways, here are some regulations that association board members can implement if they aren’t already in place.

Regulate Where Owners can Park Cars

Most HOAs or condominium complexes have specific rules about where owners can park their cars. Most of the time, owners in an association use their driveways as designated parking spots, where condo owners usually have specific spots in their community’s parking lot.

When it comes to cars in the driveway, HOAs do have the ability to restrict the type of car that is parked in the driveway. Uniformity is essential, and if a car is in poor or inoperable condition, the board has every right to ask homeowners to park that vehicle inside of their garage.

HOAs that are gated communities have control over the streets within their communities. Therefore, there can be rules against how many cars can be parked on areas like curbsides. However, if your association includes public roads, your board doesn’t have jurisdiction over vehicles parked along that road and you should contact local authorities if there are any parking issues between owners, their guests, and the board.

Regulate Parking Duration

One of the most common questions homeowners may have is how long they can park their cars in designated parking before action is taken against their vehicles. When it comes to driveways, the answer is typically unlimited since the driveway is part of their property.

However, your HOA board can regulate how long owners can park along private roads near their property or in common parking spaces for the community. In some associations, homeowners can park in areas off of their property for up to 24-hours before association action is taken. Other associations have posted designated parking hours that leave a small window for parking use.

Some association owners may view parking duration regulations as an infringement of their independence in the community. However, this particular restriction is essential to keeping up the property value of the community by preventing owners from leaving abandoned cars within parking spaces throughout the neighborhood.

Prohibit Different Vehicle Types

Most associations have rules in place that prohibit certain vehicle types from being parked on an owner’s property. The main purpose of this rule is to prevent large, clunky vehicles from becoming an eyesore within the community.

Some of the most common prohibited vehicles include the following:

  • Boats
  • RVs
  • Commercial Vehicles
  • Trailers

Even if the vehicles are in pristine condition, it is still in the interest of your board to maintain the uniformity and the appeal of a community in order to continually increase property value throughout the association.

Why Do Parking Regulations Matter?

Aside from the curb appeal necessary to an association, there are several reasons why your board should consider implementing parking regulations throughout the community. Regulations and consequences that come with violations like fees and towing help prevent issues that include:

  • Illegal/inadequate handicap parking
  • Poor parking opportunities for guests
  • Residents parking in unauthorized areas
  • Inadequate resident parking

Create Helpful Parking Regulation with the Help of Goodwin & Company

If you and your homeowner’s association board are working on improving numerous regulations for your association in the new year, work with an association management team that can help push your decisions in the right direction.

Goodwin & Company is an experienced Dallas HOA and condo management team that can help your board get through the essentials of association management. From dues collection to regulatory compliance, we’re always ready to be your team behind the scenes that push your neighborhood forward.

Contact us today to learn more about our services.