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How Technology Can Improve Your Association

Posted by Jane F. Bolin, Esq. | Jul 08, 2020 | 0 Comments

Many community associations find it challenging to incorporate the latest technologies. But doing so improves many areas of operations throughout the community.

Some community associations have been slow to implement new technologies into their workflows. But the latest innovations can cause major improvements in communications, security, administration, cost efficiency, and energy savings, among others.

Here are ways that incorporating the latest technologies into your association can improve the community overall.

Better security

New technologies are always being introduced that enhance security for businesses and homes, and associations can benefit from these innovations. For example, in addition to installing security cameras around the property, including smart doorbells on homes or condos is a new trend so that homeowners can view who's at their door via camera.

There are many new tools that enhance the security of data and online assets. Associations must protect sensitive personal information about residents in addition to financial and other community information. Taking advantage of the latest platforms that require multifactor authentication, for example, gives the entire community comfort that sensitive data is secure when stored online.

Improved communications

Communication between the association board of directors, management, and homeowners is one of the most important parts of running a community. Online technologies make it easier than ever to bridge the gap. In addition to sending out digital versions of newsletters to residents' email inboxes, tools like online calendars and scheduling can be used so that everyone receives invitations and reminders about upcoming meetings and events.

These tools distribute important announcements and alerts that homeowners receive instantly on their smartphones via text or email, or even through an app. Some association management companies have created apps where residents can access a portal to communicate with management or make payments.

Using an app makes it easy for residents to interact and view updates from anywhere on any device. And, management or board members can respond to inquiries faster.

Sometimes community associations are slow to implement such communication updates because of processes in place that have been working for years, such as distributing physical copies of newsletters or posting announcements in shared spaces. But to reach more people, and to do so instantly, incorporating better communication strategies is a must.

Simplify payments

Membership fees and assessments can be collected and managed much easier with newer technologies in place. Associations are now setting up online payment options, where residents can use a credit card or set up automatic payments. This reduces paperwork and helps you monitor late payments.

This update also relates to vendor management as well. Vendors are paid on time, and transactions are better managed with an online tool. Everything is in one place online so that records are more accurate.

Energy savings

When you're able to integrate the latest in home and property technology, both the association and residents save on energy costs. While some energy-saving installations may cost more upfront, such as solar panels, over time, these innovations help save money on monthly utility costs.

Start simple by encouraging residents to use smart thermostats and install them in shared spaces and offices. These devices help monitor temperature and save energy, lowering the costs of heating and air conditioning.

They automatically adjust based on factors like time of day, changing weather conditions, and whether a resident is at home. They can also be controlled remotely from a smartphone or other connected device.

Increased access and transparency

Using a cloud-based solution for your association means that important documents, such as governing documents, newsletters, announcements, contracts, and more, can all be accessed on any device that has an internet connection. Alerts can be created in real-time and requests can be submitted and processed quickly with an online portal.

Cloud-based portals and platforms allow the board and residents to stay in constant communication, and homeowners or condo owners can access governing documents if they have a question about rules or practices. This helps keep everyone on the same page within the community.

If you have questions about how to implement an update within your HOA or condo association while still following laws and regulations, or if you're a resident who is disputing with your association, contact the legal professionals at PeytonBolin. Our experienced attorneys help with a range of legal issues that arise within community associations, and we provide a free initial phone consultation to walk through your problem.

About the Author

Jane F. Bolin, Esq.

Founding Member, Managing Partner


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