What new HOA board members need to know…
If you are a newly appointed board member in your Homeowners Association or Condo Association, you will be involved in the decision making for your Associations’ insurance. First off, congratulations on becoming a board member! It’s an accomplishment to take the initiative to become a board member, and a representative of your neighborhood. You will be in charge with making informed decisions on behalf of your neighborhood, or condominium complex, and are expected to act in the best interest of the Association. We have many years of experience with HOA and COA insurance throughout the United States, and are here to explain a few things to our new board members.
First, you must know your associations’ bylaws. Your associations’ bylaws should clearly state what is and is not covered by the association itself. It also should clearly state the rules and regulations of the association. For instance, no swimming in the community pool after dark, or no grilling within 10 feet of a building or unit. Clearly knowing and understanding these bylaws will help determine what insurance coverage is right for your association. It will also help you better understand what coverage you need as a unit owner or homeowner. A second thing you must know is your associations’ liability exposures. These exposures include, but are not limited to: pools, ponds, playgrounds, and clubhouses. You must understand what exposures need to be listed in your HOA or COA’s insurance policies. You should also know how to limit the liability of these exposures. For instance, you could make the playground off limits for kids unless they’re accompanied by an adult. Or, you could post signs around a pond that clearly state there is no swimming allowed, which could help limit your liability in the event of a drowning on the premises of your association. The third thing you should do when becoming a board member of your Home or Condo association is to review your insurance master insurance policy with your agent, not your property manager. You agent will be able to better explain, and clearly define, what is and is not covered. They will also be able to review your building coverage, liability coverage, umbrella, and D&O coverage. (D&O is Director’s & Officers coverage, which we will discuss in a later post).
If you are a new board member, why not call us to go over these 3 things. We can discuss your associations’ bylaws, assess the liability exposures of the association, and review your current insurance policy all in the same day and all for free! We are able to write condo and homeowners associations all over America and are happy to help in a time of need. We are members of the Community Associations Institute and have complex knowledge of how EXACTLY to insure these associations. Again, you’ve made a great step in becoming a board member for your association. Remember to navigate your way through these steps in a timely manner, and we will be standing by if you need us. Thank you!