Why Community Associations Need Professional Management?
Updated: Feb 24
Planned communities are among the biggest trends in the US real estate sector. As the number of planned communities continues to rise, the importance of community associations has also seen a surge.
A community association is an organization created by the residents of a planned development unit, cooperative (coop), timeshare, or mobile home park to cater to the different needs of their neighborhood. The association looks after the social, educational, recreational, and civic matters of the locality.
Hired by the board of directors of the association, its manager (CAM) or CAM property management runs the affairs of a community association. The manager looks after the common property and management services of the community and regularly interacts with the homeowners (not with renters).
The Florida community association management is one of the best examples of delivering impeccable services to community associations and residents.
A CAM’s duty includes:
· Doing monthly evaluations
· Financial planning and overseeing the association’s funds
· Negotiating with contractors
· Overseeing maintenance of different amenities within the neighborhood
· Resolving complaints of the homeowners within the community
· Calling meetings of the board members
· Other day-to-day tasks involved in the operation of the association
CAM is one of the fastest-growing professions, with a growth projection of 10% by 2026.
The Reasons Professional Management Is Needed
With 25 to 27 percent of the US population living in planned communities, condominiums, and housing cooperatives, the need for having a professional management company has never been so high. Today, it takes more than basic management skills to manage community associations effectively.
Homeowners fully understand their homes, and the shared amenities in the community are their largest assets. Being a member of the community association, they expect the board members to hire a professional management company that can work in the homeowners’ best interests. They trust the BOD to hire a manager who has the required credentials, knowledge, skills and training to do his duty effectively.
So, what represents professional CAM property management? Below are some proficiencies that community associations desire to have in a manager. These are the cornerstones of Florida community association management:
· Complete awareness about federal and state laws, regulations, and policies governing real estate, community associations, labor, etc.
· Financial management, accounting, and budgeting skills.
· Working knowledge of taxes and insurance.
· Human resource management skills – hiring and overseeing staff and labor.
· Knowledge of working with contractors.
· Excellent communication skills to interact with residents and resolve disputes.
· Deep understanding of property upkeep
· The ability to conduct meetings and elections in accordance with the association’s by-laws/governing documents
What are the Requirements to CA Management in Different States
As communities are increasingly becoming complex and demanding, the occupation of CAM property management has become tremendously specialized and challenging. As such, some states have adopted rules and regulations to ensure proper management of community associations. These states include Florida, Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, California, and Nevada.
Alaska and Georgia
Alaska and Georgia have adopted statutory provisions requiring community association managers to have a license and be registered with a state entity.
Florida, California, Connecticut, Colorado, Nevada and Virginia
These states have adopted statutory provisions that treat and regulate CAM property management as a separate occupation.
The Florida statutes require community association managers to have a community association management license in order to work legally. Other requirements for a manager to work for Florida community association management include the following:
· Be at least 18 years old
· Submit an application and electronic fingerprints
· Complete 18 hours of CAM approved prelicensure education
· Pay the appropriate fees
· Pass the CAM test
· Be of good moral character
Given the rising demands of today’s communities, the old school of saving money through self-managed community association hardly exists. The benefits for community associations to have professional management outweigh the costs. With a competent manager, you can avoid pricey mistakes and overcome any crisis.
However, there are different requirements for becoming this kind of manager in different states. For example, the Florida statutes require community association managers to have a license and pass an examination, in addition to meeting other eligibility criteria. The requirement of continuing education for renewal of the license further broadens the knowledge and skills of the managers.
These requirements ensure that the wealth of knowledge that these managers bring to the field can set Florida community association management on a path to success and improve the quality of life of the Florida community.
Are you interested in getting a CAM license? Learn more about how to get a CAM license online.