Apathy, as described by Webster’s Dictionary, means: “a lack of interest or concern.” It’s a chronic community association problem could it be that owners bought the point of sale jargon?
“Enjoy worry-free living… all of your problems are taken care of… you don’t have to worry about a thing… someone else maintains the property for you…This property has professional management… Never do any yard work….”
Many HOA Boards have a difficult time recruiting owners to be on The Board.
In addition, many Associations cannot reach a quorum in order to conduct business at their annual meetings. Here are some ways to combat such apathy.
- In desperate situations, have legal counsel draw up a temporary plan to have non-owners serve on The Board.
- Petition The Court to reduce the size of The Board and/or reduce quorum requirements.
- Make owners who attend the annual meeting eligible to win a $200.00 gift certificate.
- Provide snacks and refreshments at annual meetings or at board meetings.
- Try to recruit “fresh faces” get new residents excited about their new living choice.
- Turn complaints into committees. When an owner expresses a legitimate issue ask them to head up a special committee to address the concern and come up with a plan to fix it.
- Have a clubhouse? Use it to build camaraderie. Organize a community picnic or tailgate party.
- A Fun Social Community gets more Board Volunteers than a dictatorial Board
- Send out periodic community Newsletter and email messages with helpful information.
In summary, the association has to “capture the community” to avoid widespread apathy. It has to continuously work to portray the community as a vibrant and active place to live. The board needs to organize “fun social events” in order to avoid the stigma of being viewed as the town sheriff. Funnel creative ways to engage the residents and you will always have enough volunteers to staff your Board.