How to Hold an Effective HOA Board Meeting
Homeowners’ associations function as corporations and, as such, are required to hold regular meetings with officers and shareholders.
Board meetings are important and often reflect how the association is managed overall. Because they are crucial to the governance of the HOA, it is imperative that HOA officers know how to best run their board meetings.
Here are a few simple tips to ensure these meetings are both efficient and effective:
Stick to the Agenda
Having a set agenda will get the meeting off on the right foot and ensure that each item of business is covered. Typically, an agenda will include opening the meeting, noting who is in attendance, and reading the minutes and treasurer’s financial report. It will then allow sufficient time to have discussions, take questions, make motions, and vote as necessary. Always stick to the agenda and table non-emergency items that come up for review at the next meeting.
Previous minutes should be read at each board meeting to provide an official record, and to allow access for homeowners should they want to review them. Minutes generally provide a summary of motions and actions taken at each meeting; they are recorded either by the HOA secretary or another board member tasked with the assignment.
Know Robert’s Rules
Parliamentary procedure defines how a deliberative body should conduct meetings to achieve a desired outcome. Robert’s Rules of Order is the most commonly used type of parliamentary procedure employed as a guide for running meetings. Using this guide for reference will help further ensure your board meetings are fair and professional.
Because they are held frequently, it’s common for members to lose interest in board meetings. Boards can revitalize interest by incentivizing attendance through pertinent guest speakers, activities for kids, complimentary food, raffles, and other creative means.
Have a set time limit for meetings (no longer than 90 minutes), and don’t go over. While it’s encouraging to have a friendly relationship amongst board members and homeowners, save any socializing until after the meeting has concluded to avoid distraction from and changes to the agenda. Finally, if possible, hold the meetings in a more formal venue, such as a community meeting room or management conference room.
A commitment to transparency is essential to successful meetings. Always announce board meetings in advance in accordance with your community’s bylaws, refrain from discussing association business outside of those meetings, and refrain from holding any private or unannounced meetings.
In these unprecedented times, it’s important to be flexible while still managing association business as needed and in the appropriate manner. Because the COVID-19 pandemic limits in-person meetings, take advantage of virtual platforms to continue to hold regular board meetings and keep the community on track and moving forward.
Not only are board meetings required, they are also critical to effectively meeting the needs of the association. If your HOA needs help getting your meetings on the right track, contact us at Spectrum Association Management today.