HOA websites, even in this age of social media, are still powerful communication tools. A well-made homeowner association website does more than just present information. HOA community websites also help residents up to date with what your board is doing. Let’s look at the sections that best HOA websites always have. Let’s also note some features that your HOA website templates should include when you’re starting your own.
In this article:
HOA Websites Impact Your Community in a Positive Way
The advancement of the Internet has created opportunities for many industries and communities. HOAs are no exception. HOA websites are an excellent tool for communication within communities. They also help your HOA board volunteers keep on top of tasks for the HOA. If you are considering how an HOA website could positively benefit your HOA, consider the following:
1. Resident Communication
Resident communication is something that commonly HOAs struggle with. Keeping track of all your residents can take up too much time. What’s even worse, is when your HOA communications fail to reach someone. Sending out HOA announcements by mail can also get out of hand as your community grows.
With an HOA website, you get a solution that grows with your community. HOA websites make it possible to post upcoming events in the community so that residents are informed and make the time to attend. Community engagement is one of the top priorities of HOA boards. Good communication with residents is a huge factor for successful HOAs. Having an HOA website can be a huge benefit in that regard. You can even use this social mention tool to see who is talking about your association.
2. Maintenance Tasks
Much of the pressure of managing an HOA has something to do with maintenance. Requests from residents can get lost in the shuffle.
Paper-based feedback systems can be too slow to address homeowner complaints. As your community grows, you need to drop outdated tools that waste your time and energy. That’s where HOA websites can streamline things for you.
HOA websites have all sorts of features depending on the level of sophistication your HOA is looking for. There are ways to input maintenance requests or other services that the HOA offers to its residents. An online form will streamline and organize requests. This improved level of organization will increase resident satisfaction in both the short and long-term. It is important to consider carefully which tasks your HOA needs to complete that can be done online.
Thus, a professional and polished HOA website is a great way to accept maintenance requests. Once you do so, you will be amazed at the positive difference it makes in your overall HOA operations.
3. Important Announcements
There are times in any community where important announcements need to be made. These may also include things like major maintenance advisories, meetings, or events. Often, time is of the essence, so you also have to make sure that word gets out as quickly as possible.
By having a website, it will be possible to post this information online instantly. It’s a lot faster to make an online calendar update, compared to leaving a note on each homeowner’s door. If your HOA puts out a lot of announcements over the course of a year, those notes quickly add up. HOA websites, on the other hand, will create savings in the HOAs budget in the long-term. Thus, you save time while also saving money on printing costs.
4. Posting of HOA Rules & Regulations
There should be complete transparency between the HOA and its residents. Posting key information about the structure of the HOA along with its CC&Rs online is a great start. By putting them online, you provide an excellent way for residents to have access to them. They can check, anytime, which rules and regulations apply to an issue that they may be facing.
Plus, any updates and revisions can be easily posted online. There is no need to reprint dozens of copies of your bylaws every time it changes.
5. Required Applications & Forms
Most projects in HOA communities require approval before they are done. Renovations, fencing, and landscaping projects should all be submitted to ensure they adhere to the community covenants, or if exceptions can be made. This process can be frustrating when there is no clear process for finding the forms, filling them out, and getting them approved by the board.
Having everything readily available via an HOA website goes a long way toward streamlining the process. Your HOA board saves time and effort while your residents get instant access to your forms, too.
Starting a Custom HOA Website
Convinced that HOA websites are the way to go for your community? Your new website does not have to be overly complex. In fact, the simpler it is to use, the better! Simple websites are also easier to understand and maintain. Plus, you can always add other features as needed. You just need to make sure that you have room in your website structure for these important items:
- A section for new residents
- General contact information: emergency hotlines, inquiry emails, etc.
- Information on amenities, pool hours, how to access, and advisories
- Maintenance service schedules: trash collection, snow removal schedule, etc.
- News and recent events, and updates on recent repairs if any
- Calendar of events
- A section for your HOA rules and regulations
- Download pages for your governing documents
- Either an online form for architectural requests or downloadable versions of your architectural forms
- A subscription system to support your email blast tools
Is an HOA Website Risky?
Of course, some HOAs are wary about putting sensitive content on their HOA websites. For things like financials and a list of delinquent payers, they need to be cleared with your legal advisors first. Like with most websites, you also have to be responsible for any public forums you provide.
Get a Quality HOA Website Service Provider
Your HOA websites also need to be easy to use. It also needs to be available whenever your residents need it, so it’s always a good idea to look at a reputable national directory of HOA management companies and vendors for your HOA website needs. Soon, you’ll be on your way towards having a custom HOA website to call your own!