Every homeowners association has different types of board members—with a variety of personalities and backgrounds. In the same way, there are also different types of homeowners in an HOA. While not everyone fits perfectly into one category, there are a few common ones that can be used to describe most owners.
Here are the three main types of homeowners in an HOA:
#1 The Knowledgeable Owner
This is the ideal owner. They understand that owning their home includes living under a homeowners association and will stay up-to-date on important matters in the HOA. They face major issues with an openness to be educated and informed about all the facts.
Knowledgeable owners tend to have the following traits:
- Gives a good amount of notice when requesting permission from the board to change something on their property.
- Familiarizes themselves with the association’s bylaws and documents.
- Is understanding of the rules and that the board controls certain aspects of how homeowners live.
- Attends annual association meetings and tries to regularly ready monthly meeting minutes.
- Gives thoughtful feedback about special assessments and reads up on the reasonings for them.
Sadly, this group of homeowners is often the minority in an HOA.
#2 The Indifferent Homeowner
This type of homeowner is often the most frustrating for a board. They are often unwilling to take the time to understand what it means to live in a homeowners association. They may break architectural rules and then lash out if they are penalized because they don’t keep up with the association laws.
Traits of an indifferent owner may include:
- Not knowing or reading the CC&Rs or news about the association
- Not attending a single board meeting or reading the meeting minutes
- Gets upset about major projects in the association without learning more or reading about the reasoning for them.
- Complains about any special assessments without seeking more information
The unfortunate truth is that you might have many homeowners who fit into this category. Your role as board is then to try better connecting with and educating these owners to turn them into knowledgeable owners.
#3 The Involved Homeowner
Involved owners understand what it means to be in an association AND want to actively take part. They volunteer for committees and often ultimately become board members themselves. They may go a bit overboard at times, but their participation is mostly a great thing.
The involved homeowner has the following traits:
- Offers input at monthly meetings and attends regularly.
- Readings meeting minutes and HOA news
- Participates in committees and loves to volunteer their time.
- Reads up on any issues involving special assessments and advocated as needed
- Makes friends with board members in a helpful way
The involved homeowners makes up a very small percentage of the owner population.
As an HOA board, your duty is to acknowledge the different owner personalities and work to fight apathy and turn more indifferent owners into knowledgeable and involved ones. For more assistance, you might need to work with a homeowners association management company.