It can be a challenge keeping HOA residents happy and on your side, especially if new owners move in and start causing headaches. How do you keep these new homeowners, who might appreciate all the effort you put into the property, happy? It’s a common issue I’ve run into during my time as an HOA board member. But don’t worry! In this blog post, I will give you some tips that have worked for me in the past to retain residents in your HOA.
Make residents part of the community
The first step to resident retention is to make residents part of the community. A great way to do this is through events like neighborhood potlucks, block parties and holiday parties. Invite your residents to join in on these get-togethers.
Establish a sense of belonging
Creating a sense of belonging is important in any neighborhood, but it's especially critical for HOA developments. When residents feel part of a neighborhood, they're much more likely to stick around and enhance the desirability of your community.
The key is to make residents feel like they're part of something special. To achieve this goal, take steps to build connections among existing residents and encourage newcomers to join in.
Here’s some ideas to establish a sense of belonging:
Include resident recognition as an important feature in your property management software.
Review home profiles for features that make each house unique, such as special architectural features or backyard gardens, and include them in a monthly newsletter highlighting the best homes in the neighborhood.
Encourage residents who have lived at the same address for 25 years or more to display a commemorative plaque on their front door.
Sponsor neighborhood events that bring residents together, such as barbecues and ice cream socials on summer evenings.
Reach out to new residents before they move in. Send them a welcome letter with advice about where to shop for groceries and other staples. Include contact information so they can get more information about how to get involved in neighborhood activities.
If you are developing a new HOA community, include information about planned amenities, such as a clubhouse with fitness.
Give back and be reliable
Here are some tips to help you keep your resident retention rate high:
Be reliable. If a resident has a problem with something, they'll contact you to fix it. This is where being on time and having good follow-through with your promises comes in handy.
For example, if a resident has an issue with the trash service, or needs help with a clogged drain or broken water heater, be there for them. When residents have problems that need fixing quickly, make sure you're their first call.
Give back. It might seem like giving back is just about donating money to local charities and schools around the holidays. But it's so much more than that. Be attentive to the community in which you live and give back in any way that makes sense for your HOA community.
Show off everything the HOA does for the community
The HOA has a major impact on the neighborhood, and residents need to know what it does for them. While homeowners might be aware of the general details of their HOA, there are plenty of things that go on behind the scenes that residents might not know about.
Hopefully, you have a newsletter and other ways of staying in touch with homeowners. Highlight events, recent repairs, completed projects, and everything else the HOA does so the homeowners know they’re getting a great value for their HOA dues. You have to tell them what you’re doing with their money!
In conclusion, resident retention is vital for maintaining a positive community
The best way to build a stronger community is to strengthen your relationships with the residents in it. As you begin your efforts to instill a sense of pride and ownership in the neighborhood, remember these key tips for resident retention. These are some of the tried and true lessons that have been passed down through years of experience. Keep these tips in mind as you take on your HOA leadership role and build an effective system for resident retention.