The past couple of years have been challenging to homeowners’ associations (HOAs), property managers and condo associations alike. While the real estate boom may have reduced vacancies and increased revenues, unexpected expenses, supply chain issues and inflation of both products and services may have delayed community projects, shifted priorities, or exceeded budgets.
Here are some tips to ensure that your HOA is financially sound and poised for growth as you move into the new normal.
- Review Past Budgets & Plans
Look through your budgets and plans for the past couple of years compared to your actual expenses and projects completed. What projects did you have to put off? Are they still a priority? What unexpected expenses did you face? Will you have to account for those going forward?
- Consider Current Market Trends
Inflation is expected to continue throughout this year, but financial experts also expect the Fed to increase interest rates to combat inflation. Pay attention to changing conditions in the marketplace so you’re not caught off guard. You may want to talk to your financial advisor to ensure that your HOA investments are as low-risk/inflation-proof as possible.
- Get Homeowner Feedback
Survey your homeowners to ensure that you understand what is most important to them, so you can keep that in mind for planning purposes. While you don’t have to please everyone, this gives you a good sense of what the majority of your homeowners would like the HOA to focus on.
- Reprioritize & Reassess
In 2020, when shutdowns forced many people to work from home, condo associations and other multi-living properties had a surge in energy bills and may have had to repair/replace HVAC systems sooner than anticipated from increased usage. Those kinds of expenses may have put other projects on the back burner. Now’s the time to go back through those projects and see what is still relevant and make a prioritized list.
- Know Where Your HOA’s Finances Stand
In addition to reviewing past budgets and actual expenses, it’s important to know exactly how much money your HOA has in various accounts and investments, and how much is set aside in your reserve fund for emergencies. Having this information up front will help you assess if you may have to raise HOA fees, enact a special assessment, or explore financing options to meet your needs and goals.
At Valley, we want your HOA to advance confidently into the new normal. If your HOA is having a hard time meeting the community’s expectations and staying in budget, you may want to consider an HOA loan. Valley is an industry leader in HOA banking and can create a customized loan program that meets your HOA’s unique needs. With years of experience and expertise dealing with HOAs, property managers, and condo associations, our team will work with you to get you competitive terms and the funding you need. Visit our HOA website, learn about our loan options, or apply now to get started.