Is your association management not fulfilling your needs? Do you find yourself frustrated with them more often than not? Is your association self-managed? Now is a great time to change management, securing the services of a trusted management company.
What to Look for in a Management Company
Before you switch management companies, it’s important to know what to look for so that you hire a company that provides what you need:
- Experience – Ask how much experience the company has within your community. What developments do they already work with? How long have they had a contract with them? This will help you determine the manager’s experience in the area.
- Ability to handle financials – You want a company that understands how to handle the financials well. Collecting association dues, handling collection issues, dealing with banks and attorneys are just a few of the jobs of a qualified management company. Ask questions about each company’s experience, successes, and even failures.
- Ability to assess and manage reserves – The right management company can assess your current reserves and policies. If your policies are lacking or your reserves are coming up short, the right management company should have advice on how to fix it.
- Ability to organize maintenance and repairs – A big part of the financial process is ensuring that you have enough funds for maintenance and repairs. The right management company will assess the current issues and predict future problems in order to set the right budget amounts. The management company will also put policies in place to manage the maintenance and repair issues.
Do You Need to Change Management Companies?
Are you unsure if your management company is adequate? Does your community manager:
- Constantly change
- Fail to respond to requests/issues in a timely manner
- Fail to have the same urgency you have when it comes to concerns in the community
- Escalate issues rather than resolving them
- Lack proper training
- Fail to answer common questions quickly and with proper knowledge
- Fail to work full-time
- Dislike his/her job
If you said ‘yes’ to any of the above issues, it’s time to find a new manager.
How to End Your Association Management Contract
Each association management contract has different terms. Pull the contract and read the fine print. Is there an expiration date or renewal date? If so, you’ll need to follow those dates carefully. Go over the details with your Board so that you can make an effective decision.
Look through your contract to determine:
- How much notice you must provide your current management company.
- Does your contract automatically renew? If so, how much notice must you provide before that date?
- Are there any penalties on canceling the contract?
Typically, you must cancel the contract in writing but read your contract to make sure you follow the policies to effectively cancel your contract.
If you are unhappy with your management company, it’s time to change. Involve the Board, know your current contract’s terms, and allow enough time to shop around to find an effective company. With the right amount of work, you’ll find a company that can effectively manage your association with ease.