21 CONDO BOARD RESPONSIBILITIES
21 condo board responsibilities (there may be more) include the strategy and management of the community. Those responsibilities include making all the business decisions that affect the association. The responsibilities of the board are defined in the governing documents. Most owners don’t understand that community associations are big business. Budgets often exceed $1 million annually and the condo board responsibilities are many, including pets and parking, crime on the common grounds, employment, and maintenance, to mention a few.
Summary of the condo board responsibilities:
- Obtain a copy of the recorded Declaration, Bylaws, and Amendments---all of the governing documents.
- Understand and enforce compliance with the governing documents.
- Establish, amend, communicate, and enforce the condo rules.
- Communicate with the owners, whether good or bad news.
- Solicit owners’ input on important matters.
- Work closely with the association’s professionals---manager, accountant, lawyer, etc.
- Manage community finances, create the annual budget, and collect fees.
- Ensure the reserves are adequate for the future replacement of major components of the property.
- Ensure that there is an annual audit by an outside CPA.
- Open and maintain bank accounts with designated signers.
- Disclose personal and financial conflicts of interest.
- Monitor all contractor activities and pay for authorized services.
- Designate, hire, and fire personnel.
- Keep correct and current records.
- Conduct meetings required by the governing documents.
- Confirm that the association’s master insurance policy is appropriate for the property and the condo board.
- Develop and oversee risk management procedures.
- Establish and support committees’ activities.
- Monitor social and security programs.
- Create procedures to maintain the appearance and conformity of the condo property.
- Preserve and promote community harmony.
There are some basic ground rules that condo boards should adopt in addition to their normal responsibilities:
- Be consistent,
- Be vigilant,
- Enforce all the rules,
- Review documents regularly,
- Ask when you do not know,
- Be honest,
- Be respectful of others, and
- Do not attack.
Condo board leaders have the right to:
- Expect owners to meet their financial obligations,
- Count on residents to know and comply with the rules and regulations,
- Expect residents to be respectful and honest,
- Receive support and constructive input from owners,
- Require owners to conduct themselves in a courteous manner at meetings, and
- Have personal privacy at home and during leisure time in the community.
Why aren't condo board responsibilities fulfilled?
Owners may run for the board to accomplish their own personal agendas.Once their pet projects are accomplished, they may have no more interest in executing their responsibilities. If their personal agendas are not fulfilled, they may become disgruntled because they didn’t get their way. One way to solve this problem is to remove members who act in this manner. The best solution is for the owners who serve on the board to have the interest of the entire condo at heart.
Occasionally when the condo needs to fill a board position, most owners are unwilling to serve and carry out the responsibilities. This situation forces the condo to accept any owner just to prevent going into receivership. It could be that that the members of the association lack a sense of community and, and they may not have a desire to maintain it as a first-class condo property.
Some condo board members may not know or understand the governing documents. Therefore, they may not know their responsibilities. One solution may be to adopt a policy that must be signed board members upon their election. It would be mandatory for them to declare that they have read and understand the condo documents, and that they will fulfill their responsibilities to the best of their abilities. The laws in some states already mandate this policy.
Some condo owners may get elected to the board just because they want the title of being on the board. In this case, that member could have an ego problem and does not really care about his or her responsibilities. One way to solve this problem is to remove that board member. Also, board members may not have the expertise to perform the responsibilities of the office to which they are elected.
3 Questions to ask yourself before running for election to the condo board:
Do you have the time? You will need to devote at least several hours of your time each month to condo business. In addition to regular monthly meetings, you will need to be active in email discussions and occasional special meetings. During special projects, you may need to spend a little extra time on condo business.
Can you make tough decisions when it is required? One of the responsibilities is to conduct the business of the association. This does not just mean approving the budget, but also developing and enforcing policies. Board members are required to step outside their immediate circle of family and neighbors and make decisions based on the greater good of the community.
Can you do all this and have fun, too? It is not all about responsibilities and tough decisions. Your condo is only as good as you make it, and establishing and maintaining a sense of community is part of the responsibilities of a condo board. Planning and attending functions such as the picnics and parties and being a presence in the community are as important as any policy decisions a board member may make.
Condo board members have the responsibility to attend meetings and vote in the decision making process. They should make no excuses, read the governing documents and work hard. Condo association board members are not paid----not because they are worthless, but because they are priceless.
CLICK ON THE "BOOKS" LINK TO PURCHASE
"CONDO BUYING & OWNERSHIP MADE SIMPLE:
TIPS TO SAVE TIME & MONEY"