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Why does our association need a Community Manager?
Partnering with a Property Management Company, trained in association management, is essential to the professional operation of any association. Property Managers have a combined business management and property management background that is essential to successfully guide Association Boards in their fiduciary responsibilities and through the challenges faced by associations.

Can I decline membership in my association?
No. Ownership of property within the Association includes automatic membership in the Association. It is a deed restriction on the lot and runs in perpetuity with it. With this in mind, it is important to select an association with amenities that suit your particular lifestyle and needs.

How can I obtain a copy of my governing documents?
You should have received a copy of your association’s governing documents at settlement. If you did not, some are available to view and print through the Recorder of Deeds in your County office. Horst Management Services is happy to send an electronic copy of the documents at any time, upon request.

I’m not certain that my concern is an association matter. What is my first step?
Your Community Manager will be able to assist you in determining whether your concern may be addressed under the authority of your association, local law enforcement or public services, or is a personal matter that calls for a resolution between neighbors. Taking a few minutes to discuss the matter with your Manager can be of value to resolving many situations or concerns.

Why is it important to attend my association’s annual meetings?
Members of the association not only have the right to vote on association business matters and participate in the election of the Board of Directors, but also have the responsibility to ensure that quorum requirements are met for transacting association business. The quorum requirements outlined in the Association’s governing documents are intended to ensure appropriate owner representation to conduct business affecting all members of the association.

What is the process for amending our association’s governing documents?
The Association’s Declaration, CCRs and By-Laws will specify the number of member signatures required and the procedure for presenting the amendment to the members. Sometimes a special meeting must be held and certain documents will require recordings in the county office where the property is located.

Why is architectural approval necessary prior to making changes to my property?
Architectural approval is essential to ensuring that all visible changes are in keeping with the community’s standards for construction and are aesthetically pleasing to the community. Continued adherence with these standards ensures long-term enjoyment of the community, protected curb appeal and property values, and fairness among the neighbors.

Are association members permitted access to financial reports throughout the year?
Associations publish budgets annually. Most associations publish Annual Financial Reports to members, and most have lengthy discussions and provide explanations during Annual Membership meetings. This is the best way to obtain the information, ask questions, and have a clear understanding of what has taken place. However, any association member may request to view financial records at the Property Management office any time during the year.

How important is a Reserve Account, and how do we determine an appropriate amount needed in this fund?
Properly funding a Reserve Account is essential to the association’s fiscal responsibility. Preparing for long-term expenses associated with the maintenance and improvement of association-owned amenities will prevent unexpected Special Assessments. Studies provided by engineering firms are most useful as they include consideration of the life expectancy and future costs of replacements.

Why is Congress considering legislation that would regulate how Home Owner Associations operate?
To cause every association to be properly registered and to operate under standard practices protecting the rights of each owner within the associations, and to ensure that association managers are qualified in this very specialized industry.