How to start an HOA management company
Are you ready to start a business in an exciting industry? If yes, then being a homeowner association manager is the perfect place for you to start. By starting your own HOA property management company, you can help a community thrive beyond its imagination while earning a comfortable lifestyle for yourself as well.
It doesn’t matter whether or not you have experience running a business. Your knowledge of managing homeowner’s associations will take you a long way in this field. Here’s how you can start and manage your own HOA property management company:
Understand the HOA Industry and the Rules in Your Location
First and foremost, do your due diligence and ensure you understand how local homeowners’ associations operate in your area. Even if you are well-versed in it, it will benefit you to analyze your local area again and refresh your knowledge about the industry as well.
As you begin learning more about the HOAs in your local area, try to narrow down the needs and requirements of these associations. This will help you understand how you can fill a gap and address the needs of local HOAs.
● Community maintenance
● Collecting resident fees and bill payments
● Managing finances of the HOA association
● Processing resident work orders or support requests.
● Creating a channel of communication between the association and its residents.
Furthermore, it is important to have an in-depth knowledge of the local laws and rules governing the communities. At this stage of your research, you must also narrow down the type of associations you’d like to serve. These could be anything between the range of gated communities to high-rise buildings.
Type of Communities
○ Single-family HOA – Single-family homes are a type of detached family homes and hence, their most important needs are processing HOA fees, keeping residents informed, and keeping track of violations.
○ Gated communities – These communities follow strict regulations to control the pedestrian flow and are characterized by closed walls and perimeters. Their needs include security, package tracking, and vehicle tracking.
○ Luxury condos and High Rise Buildings – These are buildings with multiple units that may or may not be owned by different individuals. Their requirements include managing amenities operations and reservations.
○ Other types of communities you may be in the best position to manage include active adult communities, golf communities, or townhomes.
Size of the Community
Next up, you must decide what community sizes you can manage. This will depend upon the services you’re offering and your workforce. If this is your first time stepping foot into the HOA industry, then it’s best to start slow and pick up a smaller community to work with.
This will help you to understand what a community demands and how you can improve your working efficiency as well. Once you’ve got a hold of your chosen community, you can move on to the next steps.
A great way to succeed in your HOA community is to figure out who your competitors are and decide what your ultimate selling point is. This will help you stand apart from the crowd and cater to your target audience better. Here are some of the ways you can make your mark in the industry:
- Service Offering – Define the types of services and the range of services you are ready to provide as a full-time management service. This can include communication, accounting, planning, budgeting, on-site management, and serving as a direct contact for residents.
- What Sets You Apart – Identify the areas where your competitors are lacking and try incorporating them into your management company. For instance, if your competitor doesn’t provide legal planning to the association, then you can go ahead and incorporate it into your plan.
- Personalized Customer Service – Due to the advancements in technology, the expectations of people have increased by leaps and bounds. Therefore, people nowadays love to have detailed and personalized customer service. You can provide fast responses to your customers and be on top of resident complaints.
- Expertise – Set an example of professionalism and expertise in your company by truly putting the needs of the community association and the residents ahead of your own.
- Staff professionalism and expertise – Will you require staff to have a professional certification in community association management? It’s important to encourage staff members to get accredited through local trade organizations or the Community Association Institute (CAI). CAI offers professional certifications and courses to help managers stay updated in the field.
Company Name and Branding
Once you’re done with the above principles of starting a company, you need to hit the accelerator on your company’s branding. Ensure that the name you choose has a click to it and can make a connection with your potential customers. Remember that your brand name must be easy to remember and identifiable.
Create Your Website
Your HOA management company should have a website of its own to reach out to your target audience on a larger scale and find more leads for your business.
Optimizing your website as per the latest search engine trends will help your target audience to find you easily on the internet and give you an edge over your competitors. Furthermore, it is also important to include a section on the website about your contact information.
The latest property management software can be your best friend in sailing your way through the HOA industry. An HOA software like Pilera can help you store resident information, keep track of residential requests and maintenance, view important community documents, communicate with the residents, collect dues, and pull up reports.
As your company grows, find software that will accommodate your growth through portfolio management capabilities. This will enable your staff to multitask much better. Furthermore, Pilera makes this digital transition easier for your company by providing special start-up pricing.
Come Up with a Pricing Plan
You need to develop a pricing plan that will include administrative expenses, legal expenses, HR & payroll. Ensure that the pricing is a round-figure monthly fee so that your pricing is easy for customers to understand.
Typically, management companies charge $10-20 per unit per month, according to All HOA Management. Depending on the location and the needs of the community, what you decide to charge HOAs can vary accordingly.
Marketing of Your Business:
Marketing your business will help spark an interest in your company amongst your target audience. Digital marketing tools like social media can play a huge role in expanding your business and your reach. Another important marketing strategy is to be listed on search engines such as Google and Bing or review sites such as Yelp so potential customers can find you.
Even though starting your own HOA property management company might seem like a daunting task at first, developing a plan to help you identify potential customers and your service offerings can help you get off to a good start.
Leveraging HOA software from the start can help you organize resident requests and communication so you can steadily grow your company. HOA management platforms such as Pilera can help make things easier for you. So, begin your journey in the HOA industry today with the latest technology right by your side!