Being a homeowners association manager can be fulfilling work.
But it takes a certain set of skills to manage the role’s many responsibilities– and maybe even a little help.
That’s why boards depend on HOA managers– they know the job of managing those associations can’t be done by just anyone.
Fortunately, all the skills necessary to be a great HOA manager can be learned.
Whether you’re in charge of hiring your board’s HOA manager or you’re an aspiring homeowners association manager yourself, the guide below will help you answer:
- What is an HOA manager?
- What are an HOA manager’s responsibilities?
- What skills should a great HOA manager have?
- And HOA management software tools to help make managing your association easier
So, if you’re new to working with an HOA manager, let’s start from the top.
If you’re already familiar, feel free to jump to the next section where we evaluate the responsibilities and ideal skills of a good HOA manager.
What is a homeowners association manager?
A homeowners association or HOA manager is hired to manage a homeowners association on behalf of the HOA board.
They oversee the day-to-day activity of the community and manage all aspects from maintenance to member issues and events.
Similar but different, a property manager manages a rental property for an individual or corporate investor. An HOA manager, on the other hand, manages a homeowners association for a board.
What are the responsibilities of an HOA manager?
Now, let’s talk about what an HOA manager’s responsibilities are.
What do they actually do?
Here’s a quicklist of tasks an HOA manager typically handles:
Compliance and legal matters
Staying compliant with federal, state, and local laws isn’t easy, but an HOA manager generally handles it all.
An HOA manager can handle a variety of accounting and financial-related tasks. One of those being creating and enforcing the HOA’s budget.
A key task for any association, an HOA manager stays on top of collecting dues each cycle.
An HOA manager typically produces monthly reports on financial and other matters for the board to review.
Besides just collecting dues, an HOA manager often handles the entire accounting including accounts payable and receivable.
A homeowners association manager can typically purchase the necessary insurance policies your association needs and keep up with payments.
They can also keep records of all activity from member activity to accounting, maintenance, and more.
Enforce and manage violations
Managing violations is a big part of managing an HOA, and a manager can help not only track violations but enforce them as well.
Day-to-day communications are one of the more time-consuming parts of managing an association, so HOA managers stay on top of them.
Beyond basic accounting, some HOA managers will also prepare and handle taxes for the association.
Another time-consuming task, HOA managers typically handle everything from communicating with homeowners to hiring contractors or an in-house team to paying invoices for completed maintenance and repairs.
Keep in mind that what an HOA manager or management company handles depends on them.
Some may handle all of the above– and more- while others may only handle the day-to-day operations related to member issues, events, and maintenance.
Still others may focus on the accounting aspect of managing the community.
If you’re working with an HOA manager, you’ll need to check with them to find out what they handle and what they don’t, and decide from there whether they’re a fit for what you need.
How do you evaluate an HOA manager: 5 Skills to look for
Now that we’ve covered what an HOA manager is and their typical responsibilities, let’s talk about what makes a great one.
There are certain skills and qualities you should look for– or develop if you are or are becoming one yourself– in a great HOA manager.
Some of those skills include:
Above all else, an HOA manager needs to be professional. This is because their actions reflect back on the board and the entire association as a whole.
2. Clear communication
Most of what an HOA manager does throughout their day involves communicating in one way or another, whether it be communicating with contractors, homeowners, or board members.
As a result, being an effective communicator is a big part of being a great HOA manager.
As an HOA manager, you’ll come in contact with all types of people, from difficult board members to opinionated homeowners.
A great HOA manager understands this and is effective at navigating different personalities and situations while still getting things done and not allowing themselves to be stepped on.
4. Property management and maintenance knowledge
An HOA manager doesn’t need to have experience in real estate, real estate investing, or property management.
However, having experience in any of these things will make them a better HOA manager, as there is quite a bit of overlap.
5. The ability to multitask
Being an HOA manager means a lot of different things, which often means doing a lot of different things at once.
Being good under pressure or simply when hit with a number of different tasks simultaneously are great qualities for any aspiring HOA manager.
3 Homeowners association management software
Now, let’s finish by talking a bit about homeowners association management software.
HOA management software is an HOA manager’s best friend, as it’s purpose-built to help them do several things with less time and effort spent.
For example, with HOA management software, you can get access to tools that help you manage the association’s:
- Maintenance management
- Creating monthly reports for your board
- Community management
- Community member portals
- And more
The grand sum of all of these features together can mean hundreds of hours saved each month that you can put toward higher-impact tasks.
With that said, here a few great options for HOA management software tools:
DoorLoop is an all-in-one HOA management software that gives you access to a huge number of features that will make managing your community easier.
- Work order management system
- Complete accounting suite
- QuickBooks Online integration
- Built-in communications tools
- Collect dues right from within the app each month automatically
- Built-in CRM with member portal
- And more
PayHOA is an HOA management software with great, responsive customer service and a large number of features.
- Work order creation
- Payment processing
- Committee and calendar management
3. Empowered HOA
Empowered HOA is an HOA management tool with a clean interface that’s easy to use. It has good documentation as well, making it easier to get started.
They don’t offer online support or any other training such as webinars to get started, but they balance that with a strong feature set.
- Event management
- Work order management
- Event and committee tools
Manage your HOA right
- A soon-to-be HOA manager
- An HOA manager looking to improve
- Or you’re looking to hire an HOA manager
Hopefully this guide helps you find out more about why an HOA manager is useful, what makes a great HOA manager, and additional tools to improve your ability to manage your HOA community.
And remember to use all the tools at your disposal such as HOA management software to supercharge and streamline your efforts.