Set HOA goals at the start of each year. It’s a great way to use that fresh start to think forward to the yearly goals of the HOA you want to aim for. In your HOA Goal-setting session, think about the ways you can improve your association. What are HOA goals that you want to target by the first quarter? Which ones should you budget for? We hope this guide helps you plan for the year ahead.
In this article:
Set HOA Goals The SMART Way
Regardless of where your HOA is located, you need to consider how to improve your organization each year. HOAs that think ahead and set out attainable goals are the ones getting things done. They are associations that earn a great deal of respect from their residents. Not so coincidentally, they are also the ones that are financially stable, too.
SMART goals refer to a specific formula of goal setting that is designed to help individuals achieve success. We explain each component of the SMART goal formula below:
The “S” in SMART goals stands for specific. It’s important to set specific goals. HOAs that focus on certain goals are going to have a higher probability of success in achieving them. Be sure that your HOA has specific goals planned out for this year. Doing so, you can have the best possible results in the upcoming year.
The best goals are goals that you can keep track of. HOAs that have measurable goals are able to track progress. They can use that progress to motivate their HOA board of directors.
For example, using a newsletter is a great way to showcase progress. Publish regular newsletters so that progress to be visible for everyone. The HOA board of directors also becomes more accountable for meeting measurable goals. With each new newsletter published, the HOA can look back if they have accomplished what they set out to achieve that period.
It is wise for your HOA board of directors to set realistic goals. Your HOA board of directors needs to have a discussion about the goals that they would like to achieve for the year. Then, they also need to discuss about which goals can actually be reached.
Your HOA also needs to prioritize their achievable goals. An association can only do so much through board member involvement and resident volunteers. HOAs that overwhelm their board members will also have issues by spreading each board member’s time too thin. By setting goals that are achievable, your HOA will set itself up for success in the upcoming year.
Your HOA board of directors needs to find goals that are relevant to the best interests of the HOA. Your HOA board of directors should be dedicated to promoting efficiency within your organization. Irrelevant goals often delay that progress.
Each member of the HOA board of directors should have dedicated and relevant tasks that are not too time-consuming. Don’t overextend your HOA board members, either. Else, they will end up providing a lower quality of service to your residents. Make sure to have a clear idea of what the precise availability of your HOA board members is in the upcoming year. This way, you can ensure that they are able to complete the various tasks that you will be expecting of them.
When setting goals for your HOA, it is important to decide whether they are for the short-term or long-term. Ideally, the goals should be timely. Your HOA board of directors needs to discuss which goals are high priority and which ones can be reached in the longer term. Your HOA board of directors should also set a reasonable timeframe for any goals to be achieved.
If you set goals that are too ambitious, then it will make them almost impossible to achieve. HOAs also need to consider the schedules of their organizations, particularly of their board members.
Set HOA Goals With Thus Handy Checklist
A planning checklist is a must-have as you set HOA goals for this year. It keeps your ideas organized. It also helps to make sure you don’t miss anything. Here’s a good list to start with as you plan for the year ahead:
1. Governing Documents
These are the first place to look as you set HOA goals for next year. Are your goals in line with your governing documents? Are these documents amended and up-to-date, in the first place?
If you’re having an audit done this year, audit preparations should definitely make it to your checklist. Make plans to prepare for an HOA audit ahead of time. This ensures that the audit goes as smoothly as possible.
If there’s a goal you can improve on every year, it’s tax preparation. Plan ahead so that you can make sure your HOA taxes are in before the deadline.
4. Budget and Assessments
A better budget is always something to aim for. Plan ahead so that the HOA can do a better job of budget preparation this year. Make sure to plan for the time it needs to collect and organize your financials, as well.
5. Maintenance, Renovation, and Replacement Projects
With the essentials out of the way, it’s time to focus on the core of your planning. Maintenance plans and projects are where the most visible changes happen for the community. Make sure that the whole board is aware of the plans you have for this year.
Better meetings are always a worthwhile goal to have. Take the time to plan those committee and annual meetings. This way you have a good idea of your HOA board schedule.
Avoid These Pitfalls As You Set HOA Goals
Even though many HOA board of directors have great intentions, they fail to execute their goals effectively. By carefully considering which goals will be beneficial to the organization immediately and which ones can wait for the next couple of years, HOA board of directors will be able to focus on a few objectives and do them well.
Try to map a five-year plan for your HOA and ascertain where the priority issues are that need to be resolved quickly. Then, look at the cost to implement your ideal changes to see whether the existing budget of the HOA can support the goals your HOA board of directors is setting out to achieve.
If your HOA board of directors fails to plan in this manner, it can cause the organization to waste a great deal of capital on goals that they will not be able to afford without completing special assessments that will anger their residents.
How A Community Management Company Can Help You Set HOA Goals
If your HOA needs to put together a plan and set HOA goals this year, we can help. Give us a call, let’s work together to make the coming year a great one for your community.
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