How to Properly Deal with HOA Special Assessments
Many homeowner’s associations (HOAs) do a great job of anticipating and planning for cost. However, even the most prepared associations cannot fully anticipate every expense, and in some cases may have to impose a special assessment on members of the community. A special assessment is a charge that falls outside of expected association dues that is levied by the association to all members of the community in response to an unforeseen and unbudgeted need for funds. A number of circumstances could lead to this decision including weather related damages, major infrastructure repairs or improvements, or shortfalls in the budget from unpaid dues.
Approaching your community members about a special assessment can often be an intimidating and very stressful event. The HOA may find it difficult to communicate to the community the necessity for the special assessment or some residents may not fully comprehend why they are being charged. This is why we recommend seeking the help of an experienced Tampa homeowner’s association management company.
When it comes to notifying residents of a special assessment, the association’s board members or Tampa HOA management company should be able to handle the process in such a manner that would cause the least amount of grief and tension within the community. Below are a few helpful tips that condo associations may find useful when dealing with special assessments.
CONSULT THE PROFESSIONALS
Associations may find it helpful and easier for a professional to explain to the members of the community the necessity for the special assessment. By fielding questions and address concerns, an expert may be able to give the community a better understanding of the situation.
It it important for members of the community to feel that they can trust their association, and that any decision that is made is in the community’s best interest. The best way to way to accomplish this is to keep the community completely informed about the special assessment.
GIVE AMPLE NOTICE
It is also very important to give the members of the community ample notice. This is especially true for big ticket items. The more time the members of the community have to take in the information, the better. This allows the members of the community enough time to prepare and make any necessary adjustments for the special assessment.
OFFER PAYMENT OPTIONS
Providing members of the community flexible payment terms can help soften or ease the blow of a special assessment, and may actually increase the odds of collection. It is important for condo associations to remember to not provide too many payment options as it may become a logistical nightmare to keep track of who owes what.