Almost half of condo owners feel that they don’t have enough communication from their condo board, according to Condo Information. How can you improve your relationship with your condo board to clear up miscommunication about fees, repairs, reserve funds, maintenance, noise, and other critical building issues? Here are a few things you can do:
1. Understand The Paperwork
Every condo board is governed by different rules and has a different structure. You can’t assume that your new condo board operates the same as your last. To make a good first impression, read up on the structure of your board. Also, look into any publicly available documents produced by the board to get a sense of their usual perspective on various issues.
You also need to look into the lease agreement and be sure you understand what condo owners can and cannot do with their property. Making a simple mistake that violates the lease is a good way to undermine your relationship with the condo board.
2. Get Involved
It’s hard for anyone to respond well in conflicts or to criticism if they feel that the other party isn’t really involved or isn’t doing their part. In order to show that you care about what’s happening at the board, get involved.
Always respond to their emails and notices promptly. Weigh in on issues, even those that don’t relate to you directly or that are not your top priority. Try to create consensus in any issue you’re involved in, and thereby prove you have valuable input that the board can lean on.
You can also try to get involved as a volunteer for events or initiatives that the board is running. One of the best ways to show you care is to give your time. This will help you develop a reputation as someone who cares and goes above and beyond for the property.
3. Communicate Effectively
It’s easy to get worked up over a dispute with the condo board, whether it’s about a noise complaint, a repair issue, or even a paint job. Even if you feel you’re not being heard or being treated unfairly, you can serve your interests best if you remain calm and state your matter clearly and without exaggeration.
There’s always the possibility that the condo board does not hear or act on your concern. If so, it’s important to escalate reasonably. Send stronger, written communication about your concern, particularly by email where you have a paper trail.
If you feel the conversation may devolve, it’s best to remove yourself from the situation and call in the help of a mediator. If the matter is dire, it’s much better to contact the board through a lawyer.
Conflict is abound in property management, after all, what matters more to people than their home or the place they do business? At Central Erin Property Management, we understand how to build consensus and resolve conflict in all types of property management issues