Category Archives: HOA Board


Code of Conduct Policy for HOA Board Members and a Sample Policy

Homeowners Associations (HOAs) are an essential part of many residential communities across the nation. They play a crucial role in maintaining the community’s standards, enforcing rules, and preserving property values. One of the critical components of a successful HOA is a dedicated and responsible Board of Directors. To ensure that the Board operates effectively, it is vital to adopt a code of conduct policy that outlines the expected behavior and responsibilities of its members. In this article, we’ll discuss the importance of a code of conduct policy for HOA Board members and provide a sample policy to help guide your association.

Why a Code of Conduct Policy is Essential for HOA Board Members

Promotes Accountability and Transparency: A code of conduct policy sets clear expectations for Board members, ensuring that they understand their roles and responsibilities within the community. This policy holds them accountable for their actions and decisions, promoting transparency and trust among homeowners.

Enhances Board Cohesion and Collaboration: When Board members adhere to a code of conduct, it fosters a healthy and collaborative working environment. This policy ensures that all members communicate effectively, treat each other with respect, and focus on the common goal of serving the community.

Reduces Conflicts and Misunderstandings: Conflicts and misunderstandings can arise when Board members have differing opinions or interpretations of their responsibilities. A code of conduct provides clear guidelines to help prevent and resolve such disputes, creating a more efficient and harmonious Board.

Protects the HOA’s Reputation: Board members who act unethically or irresponsibly can damage the reputation of the entire HOA. A code of conduct helps maintain the association’s credibility by outlining expected behaviors and ensuring that Board members act professionally and with integrity.

Ensures Compliance with Laws and Regulations: A comprehensive code of conduct policy can help ensure that Board members remain compliant with local, state, and federal laws and regulations governing HOAs. This helps protect the association from potential legal disputes and fines.

Sample Code of Conduct Policy for HOA Board Members

The following sample policy can be adapted to suit the specific needs and requirements of your HOA:


The purpose of this Code of Conduct is to establish standards of ethical and professional behavior for all Board members of the [Name of HOA]. This policy promotes transparency, accountability, and a harmonious working environment, ensuring that the Board serves the best interests of the community.

General Principles

Board members shall:

Act in the best interest of the HOA and its members, putting the community’s welfare above personal interests.

Perform their duties with honesty, integrity, and professionalism.

Comply with all applicable laws, regulations, and the HOA’s governing documents.

Treat fellow Board members, homeowners, and vendors with respect and fairness.

Maintain confidentiality regarding sensitive HOA matters and information.

Avoid conflicts of interest and disclose any potential conflicts to the Board.

Attend and actively participate in Board meetings and association events.

Conflict Resolution

In the event of conflicts or disagreements, Board members shall:

Communicate openly and respectfully, seeking to understand others’ perspectives.

Focus on the issue at hand rather than personal attacks or criticisms.

Strive to reach a consensus, keeping the best interests of the community in mind.

If necessary, seek mediation or third-party assistance to resolve disputes.


Failure to comply with this Code of Conduct may result in disciplinary action, up to and including removal from the Board, as outlined in the HOA’s governing documents.

Adopting a code of conduct policy for HOA Board members is helpful in ensuring the smooth and effective functioning of the association. It promotes accountability, transparency, collaboration, and compliance, all of which contribute to a healthy and well-managed community. By implementing a code of conduct policy, HOA Boards can set clear expectations for members, reduce conflicts and misunderstandings, and protect the reputation of the association. Utilize the provided sample policy as a starting point to develop a customized code of conduct that meets your community’s unique needs and requirements.

Keys to an Effective HOA Board Meeting

The residents of a Homeowner’s Association (HOA) rely on the board of directors to ensure that the community runs smoothly. As such, it is important for the board members to run effective meetings in order to make decisions and address issues quickly and efficiently. 

Unfortunately, running an effective meeting isn’t as easy as creating an agenda and taking minutes. Here are some tips for making sure your HOA board meetings are productive and successful and how a team like Goodwin & Company can help you iron out the details of each meeting. 

Preparation is Key 

Starting with an agenda is one of the most important things that a board can do prior to its meeting. An organized and planned agenda ensures that all members have access to the information to be discussed and any relevant documents or information pertaining to the topics at hand. 

Time wasted is time you can’t lose. Therefore, preparing an agenda and sending it out in advance to all board members will allow them to come prepared with questions and comments, which saves time during the meeting.

Suppose your board isn’t experienced with creating detailed meeting agendas. In that case,, your HOA management team should have the experience and industry knowledge to help get your board members on the same organizational page.

Decide On Rules 

When a board meeting doesn’t have rules and etiquette in place, it’s easy for a standard meeting to quickly get out of hand. Having rules in place for how board members should conduct themselves during their meetings can help make sure that everyone has an equal opportunity to speak their minds without fear of criticism or judgment from other members. 

These meeting protocols also set clear expectations for how long people have to speak before passing off discussion points. 

Stay Organized 

Organization throughout the meeting is also essential. An effective board meeting requires all participants to stay organized throughout their discussion period so that they can get through as much material as possible in a timely manner. 

One way this can be accomplished is by having each member take notes on what’s been discussed so far, what needs further clarification or discussion, and what has been decided upon already. 

This ensures that everyone is up-to-speed with what’s happening and helps keep conversations focused on completing tasks instead of rehashing unrelated topics. 

Sticking to Business Matters 

Speaking of related topics, it’s important that everyone attending the meeting remains focused on business matters at hand. Stick to topics related directly to running your HOA such as financial matters, policy changes, updated procedures or regulations.

It is generally discouraged to bring up personal matters during HOA board meetings unless they directly relate back to running your association efficiently and effectively. 

Manage Your Board Meetings Effectively With Goodwin & Company

A great HOA is only as good as the effectiveness of its board meetings. However, not every board is built with ready-made leaders and running an HOA can come with quite the learning curve. 

Fortunately, a team like Goodwin & Company can offer HOA management services that can help board members focus on improving their communities without the behind-the-scenes stress. From helping organize board meetings to collecting unpaid HOA dues, our team of property managers can help you make your association the gem of the community.

Contact us today to learn more about our services.


The Committee Charter: Setting Clear Guidelines for your HOA’s Committees

A Committee Charter is a document that outlines the purpose, goals, and responsibilities of a specific committee within an organization. In the context of a homeowners association (HOA), a Committee Charter serves as a guide for the board of directors and the members of a committee to ensure that the committee operates efficiently and effectively.

A Committee Charter should include important information such as the committee’s purpose, the objectives it is expected to achieve, its composition, how it will operate, and how decisions will be made. The Charter should also outline the committee’s scope of authority and the limits of its decision-making powers. This is important to ensure that the committee operates within its defined responsibilities and does not overstep its boundaries.

Having a Committee Charter in place provides several benefits for HOA boards. Firstly, it helps to ensure that committees are working towards the same objectives and that everyone is clear about their responsibilities. Secondly, it clarifies the roles and responsibilities of each committee member, which can help to avoid confusion and potential conflicts. Thirdly, the Charter helps to ensure that committees are working in a structured and organized manner, which can lead to more efficient and effective decision-making.

Another key advantage of having a Committee Charter is that it provides a clear reference point for future decisions. If there is any ambiguity or uncertainty about the committee’s purpose or objectives, the Charter can be used as a reference to clarify these issues. Furthermore, if the HOA board needs to review the committee’s activities in the future, the Charter can serve as a record of its objectives, responsibilities, and actions.

A Committee Charter is an essential tool for HOA boards when forming committees. It provides a clear outline of the committee’s purpose, objectives, and responsibilities, helping to ensure that the committee operates efficiently and effectively. By providing a clear reference point for future decisions, the Charter helps to ensure that the committee is working towards its defined goals and objectives and that everyone is clear about their roles and responsibilities.

Here’s an example of a committee charter for a social committee in an HOA:

Committee Charter for Social Committee of ABC Homeowner’s Association

Purpose: The purpose of the Social Committee is to plan, organize, and execute various social events and activities for the members of the ABC Homeowner’s Association. The events will aim to build community spirit, foster relationships among members, and provide a sense of belonging to the neighborhood.

Composition: The Social Committee shall consist of a Chairperson and at least two (2) other members, appointed by the Board of Directors. The Chairperson shall be the primary point of contact and lead the committee in its duties.


Plan, organize, and execute social events and activities that are in line with the purpose of the committee.

Ensure that all events are well-planned, organized, and executed in a timely and efficient manner.

Keep the Board of Directors informed of the committee’s activities and seek approval for any major events.

Develop and maintain a budget for all events and activities and ensure that expenses are within the approved budget.

Coordinate with other committees, as needed, to ensure seamless execution of events.

Meetings: The Social Committee shall meet as often as necessary to plan and execute events. Meetings shall be held in accordance with the rules and procedures established by the Board of Directors. Minutes of each meeting shall be taken and a copy shall be provided to the Board of Directors.

Reporting: The Social Committee shall provide regular reports to the Board of Directors on the status of its activities and events, including the budget and any expenditures. The committee shall also provide recommendations for future events and activities.

Termination: The Social Committee shall continue until dissolved by the Board of Directors. The committee may be dissolved by the Board of Directors if it is deemed to be inactive or not fulfilling its purpose.

Amendment: This charter may be amended by a majority vote of the Board of Directors.

HOA Board Meeting

Eight Tips for Getting All HOA Board Members on the Same Page

To get the most from your homeowner’s association (HOA), it is important that all members of the board are working towards the same goals. If you have an HOA in your community, you are encouraged to use the following strategy to ensure your community benefits the most from HOA management.

Establish Roles and Responsibilities for Each Board Member

Your board members should know exactly what to do as a team. When your board members have direction, they can accomplish their goals.

Directly after your new Board members are sworn in, hold an exclusive meeting that details every responsibility the new volunteer has in their position. This prevents any responsibility overlap and, most of all, prevents anything from falling through the cracks.

Additionally, you can assign these members to form committees to organize additional tasks that need special attention. 

Make Sure Everyone Understands the HOA Rules and Regulations

For your board to be effective, they must understand the rules and regulations of the HOA. Knowing all of the rules and regulations will help your board stay focused on what the community wants from the HOA.

Take some time to review your community CC&Rs with your management and legal team. They will help each Board member understand the amount of reach they have in the HOA.

Set an Agenda for Each Meeting and Stick to It

For the best results in a HOA board meeting, you want a written agenda, and you will want to follow it closely. When you go off track, it is easy to get sidetracked, and the meeting closes with nothing accomplished.

Set a Time at Each Meeting for Open Discussion

At the end of your board meeting, have an open discussion. This will allow board members to discuss anything that may have been brought to their attention since the last meeting that should have been included in the current meeting agenda.

This special time set aside ensures that nothing of importance is left in the rearview as your board moves forward on decisions.

Set Up a Standard Form of Communication for Board Members

Board members should be able to stay in touch outside of meeting times. Establish a group email or text that can be used specifically for HOA-related information and discussions. Remember, though, the only place where a legitimate vote can occur is at an official meeting, not via text or private phone calls.

Encourage Collaboration by Setting Common Goals for the HOA

Your board members will be more willing to work towards a goal for your community when they feel included. Taking time to sit down and truly discuss what matters to each board member can lead to a quick sense of common ground. This type of collaboration will always benefit the HOA and the community.

Set Guidelines for Conflicts

Conflicts can arise at any board meeting when members have different views on a subject. Establish a guideline on how to resolve conflicts and follow it at all times. This may include voting on a subject or researching more on the project before committing to an idea or plan.

Follow Up on All Tasks Assigned

Board members should establish how to follow up on any given tasks or projects. This may include a regular check-in with other board members before the next meeting or a follow-up call by a designated board member to see how the task is going or the results.

HOA management techniques are very important to the success of the HOA. Goodwin & Company is a Dallas HOA management firm that works with local HOAs so that its Board can manage its communities more effectively.

People choose to reside within an HOA community because they like what an HOA has to offer. They like the thought of their community being held to a higher standard because it means they will enjoy a higher standard of living. HOA board members are encouraged to use these tools to get the most out of their meetings and the best results for their community.

Contact us today to learn more about our HOA management services.


communication in meetings

4 Ways to Improve Communication Within Your HOA

As an HOA board, staying connected to your community is important. Good communication is essential for maintaining a sense of unity and trust among owners. If one of your 2023 resolutions was to grow your community members, communication is critical.

Here are 4 tips to help ensure that communication lines are open and running smoothly and how a property management team can help year-round.

Make Meetings Accessible 

Holding regular meetings is a great way for HOA boards to keep their members up-to-date on important issues and decisions. 

But if access to these meetings is limited, not everyone can attend or stay informed. To improve accessibility, consider hosting online meetings or providing recordings of past meetings so members can watch them at their convenience. This will allow everyone in the community to stay up-to-date on HOA news and discussions regardless of their ability to attend physical meetings. 

Utilize Multiple Communication Channels 

When communicating with members, it’s important to use multiple channels such as email, phone calls, text messages, social media platforms, and newsletters to reach people who may prefer one platform over another. 

By utilizing multiple channels, you can ensure that no one misses out on important information from the board or other members of the community. An HOA management team like Goodwin & Company can help you create and distribute messages for multiple channels. All your Board has to do is provide us with the key information.

When everyone is kept in the loop, your community begins to thrive and make decisions that improve its value for owners.

Encourage Open Dialogue 

Open dialogue is key for building trust between community members and the board and fostering a vibrant community atmosphere. 

Create forums or discussion groups where people can openly share ideas and ask questions about various topics related to the HOA so that everyone feels like they have a voice in the community. Outside of more structured meetings, open forums will give you valuable insight into what people want from their HOA experience, which can be used for future planning purposes.            

Keep Things Transparent 

Transparency is vital for successful communication. So, it’s important that all decisions are made openly and clearly communicated with everyone in the community when appropriate. 

Provide regular updates on financials and upcoming projects or events so that owners feel like they are kept in the know when it comes to matters concerning their home environment.

Making sure people understand how decisions are made within their community will help foster a sense of unity among members, which is essential for any successful HOA organization. 

Create Community Events 

Organizing community events is an effective way for HOA boards to build connections with homeowners and encourage them to get involved in the community. 

These events include holiday parties or potlucks to movie nights or game days. 

It’s also a great opportunity for new community members to meet their neighbors and become more familiar with the area. 

Send Out Surveys  

Surveys are another effective tool that HOA boards can use when communicating with homeowners. Surveys provide an opportunity for HOAs to gain valuable feedback from residents and better understand how they feel about certain topics related to their neighborhood’s operations, such as policies and services provided by the board. It’s important that surveys are distributed regularly so that current board members and HOA management remain aware of any changes in resident sentiment over time.  

Foster Your Community’s Trust With Goodwin & Company

It is essential for HOA boards to maintain good relationships with their residents in order to effectively manage their communities and ensure everyone’s needs are being met properly. Establishing clear lines of communication between board members and homeowners will help ensure that all parties are kept informed and involved in the decision-making process for their neighborhood’s operations. 

Not every board member has the time to improve communication from the inside. So, letting a qualified HOA management group handle communication improvements makes getting to know your constituent needs a breeze. At Goodwin & Company, we put our decades of experience to work for the communities we serve. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can make your HOA the best it can be.


How to Create an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Plan

People frequently avoid dealing with uncomfortable problems because they are unsure of what to do. Although few people relish conflict, your HOA’s Board of Directors must prepare for problems.

No community escapes unpleasant issues forever. A dispute of some type will eventually afflict even the sweetest community. What you and your HOA Board can do is develop an alternative dispute resolution plan. Then, you are ready to respond in a rational, predefined way when a problem erupts.

ADR Supports Compliance With Texas Law

Texas law calls upon HOA management to engage with parties subject to many types of enforcement actions prior to filing a lawsuit. An alternative dispute resolution plan fits neatly into regulations that an HOA management team should observe prior to going to court.

Resolving Conflicts With Mediation and Arbitration

Alternative dispute resolution typically involves mediation or arbitration. Your plan will specify one or both as the route to resolving conflicts.


You hire a professional mediator who acts as a neutral third party. The mediator meets with the parties in dispute and manages the conversation so that both sides may present their complaints and propose remedies. The role of a mediator is to uncover common ground and guide both sides toward a mutually acceptable resolution.


You hire a professional arbitrator who acts as a neutral third party and presides over the dispute discussion. An arbitrator differs substantially from a mediator in that the person has the authority to decide the outcome. Your alternative dispute resolution plan would need to clarify that arbitration results in a binding decision. Arbitration often removes the parties’ ability to take the case to court.

When Would an HOA Need ADR?

Ideally, an HOA’s board has a plan before a problem flares up. Your board should communicate the plan to property owners to know their rights and what steps to take when they have disputes.

As you might already know, disputes can arise from almost anything. They could emerge between a property owner and the HOA or between two or more property owners. Many people will immediately assume they have to take their complaints to court, but alternative dispute resolution will divert them away from costly and often damaging litigation.

Reasons an HOA Board Should Embrace ADR

Even when your lawyer tells you that the law is firmly on your side, this does not mean that a lawsuit will produce the outcome you expect. Success in court comes at a high cost, not only in terms of time and money but also because it eliminates the chance of a useful compromise.

On the other hand, mediation or arbitration can resolve a problem quickly and for much less money than litigation. You can hire a mediator or arbitrator faster than you can get a court date. These professionals can encourage complainants to fix a problem. The process possesses a collaborative nature that cannot be found in the court system and that is antagonistic by design.

Explore the Benefits of Professional HOA Management

In addition to adopting an alternative dispute resolution plan, your board might reduce conflicts by working with a professional HOA management company like Goodwin & Company. Reach us today to see how your community could benefit from our services.


5 Ways to Improve Owner Retention in Your Association

Bringing new owners into your association is excellent, but keeping them around for years is critical. Owner retention in an HOA can be difficult. Yet, when approached with the correct Board and HOA management team, it can lead to:

+ A more efficient association

+ Even more new owners

+ A more robust Board of Directors

+ Happier homeowners

Your Board should have all of these goals in mind regarding managing the community. If your association needs help with member retention, here are 5 things your Board can do to keep your community full and thriving.

Create HOA Membership Benefits

How your association stands out from the competition directly results in how it retains its members. One of the best ways to stand out is through unique membership benefits.

Everyone wants something special out of their HOA. So, meet with your Board and management team to find out what you can do to make your association unique.

Some of the best association benefits include:

+ Regularly sponsored social events

+ An online portal that simplifies membership

+ Customized communication based on member preference

+ Updated swimming pool and other shared association amenities

Build Actual Relationships With Your Owners

A monthly bill and newsletter aren’t enough to say you’ve put in an effort to get to know your owners. People love when they get extra positive attention. Take some time out of your Board’s schedule to reach out and get to know your constituents.

Simple communication like a personalized birthday message or postcard thanking them for a recent volunteer effort can help your owners feel seen, respected, and eager to live within your association.

Plan Interactive Activities

Activities are one of the cornerstones of a successful association. Planning social gatherings around current association topics like a greener initiative or noise reduction directly involves owner input and building rapport.

If your owners feel like they’ve helped create an initiative, they’ll be more inclined to stay and possibly become future members of the Board itself!

Find Out Why Members Leave

If you’ve experienced a string of members leaving in the past, there is likely an issue on the association’s end you need to address. While you may be unable to reach out to former members, you can still survey current members and learn where you can improve.

Getting answers now and resolving issues as soon as possible helps you maintain expectations and keep your community’s population high.

Ask Property Management About Membership Management Software

Membership management software is an excellent way to simplify overall management through technology. Management software keeps your efforts organized, helps track owner activity, and makes event creation and promotion easier.

Goodwin & Company can help you use management software to create an online portal that eases your management burdens and lets you focus on immediate improvements that keep your members happy.

Start Your Retention Journey Today, With Goodwin & Company

If your association is on a growth trajectory or has had past troubles with owner retention, it’s time to put your membership in the hands of professionals. At Goodwin & Company, we’ve helped associations of all sizes earn new owners, keep them, and grow a thriving community over the years.

Let our management professionals help you create an attractive association. Contact us today to learn more about becoming a member of the Goodwin family!

Top Reasons Why You Should Join your Association’s Board

Serving on your HOA’s board comes with immense responsibility but can be one of the most rewarding things you could do as a homeowner owner. You can improve your experience as a property owner, but you can also make some long-term positive changes that benefit future property owners.

Here are some of the biggest reasons you should consider joining your association’s board.

You Can Help Correct Problems

If you know that your homeowner’s association has recurring problems like noisy neighbors or not enough parking for visitors, joining your association’s board can help you correct any problems in your community.

As an HOA board member, you will also be the person other owners come to with their problems. So, if you are a natural problem-solver, a position on the Board may be the right volunteer opportunity for you.

Help Your Community Meet Overall Expectations

You likely volunteered for your Board because you were unsatisfied with how the community has met your expectations. You want your association to live up to the expectations owners have when they buy into your community.

As an association board member, you have the power to work hand-in-hand with your neighbors and create the utopia your community set out to be.

Learn About Association Laws and Finances

Volunteering for your HOA board allows you to work closely with local laws and finances. Approaching these items with an open mind and willingness to learn will make you a better leader.

With an association management company at your side, you have direct access to legal and financial counsel. They will guide you through essential processes that give you a greater understanding of managing an association’s legal and financial hurdles.

Elevate Your Community With a Team

Working with your association Board means improving your community as a team. Everyone on the Board brings unique skills to the table to make your association better.

As a Board member, you aren’t on this journey alone. Working together will ensure the right improvements and decisions are made at the right time for your community.

Build Your Leadership Skills

Finally, volunteering for your association’s Board can help you build your personal leadership skills.

As a board member, you’ll have to lead your fellow property owners and guide them toward making the right choices for your community.

From speaking at town hall meetings to approaching an owner face to face to discuss a regulatory issue, your experience on the Board will give you the knowledge and confidence you need to approach any responsibilities in your life with an air of leadership.

Achieve Community Greatness With Goodwin & Company

If your association board needs help onboarding new members or helping volunteers find their place, Goodwin & Company can help. We are a team of HOA management professionals that have improved associations of all sizes.

From advising your board members to being the face of the community for your association, Goodwin has the experience to push you forward.

Contact us today to learn more about our services and how your community could join forces with Goodwin & Company.