Before selecting a community association management firm, it’s advisable to set up a committee for the exact purpose. When there is no committee, board members could offer this function too. The following are some of the other aspects to keep in mind when choosing the association management firm.
Adoption of Management Specifications
In the beginning, the committee must take up management specifications that the board of directors have reviewed and agreed to. The specifications would then be utilized for bidding. The committee must recognize potential management companies by pre-qualifying them prior to seeking their bids. The pre-qualifying phase would entail questions or discussions relating to the particular company’s location, history and period of business, number of employees, principals’ experience, kind of insurance cover, bonding, types of services offered, association and professional references’ list, and uniqueness.
Select the Bidder
After having compiled all this data, the committee will then ascertain the companies eligible for bidding on the community’s management. Before putting out the management for bidding, the board would take the recommendations of the committee and put them in writing as the final step. The specifications would then be utilized for bidding. The written specifications would make sure the bidding ground is fair, as all management firms don’t provide identical services. And importantly, the board has to make up its mind on the services to be taken care of by onsite personnel, outside contractors, and membership volunteers before the ultimate call is made about the specifications.
The list of items that would be part of the specifications are board liaison, response to resident inquiries, bidding, enforcement of rules, site visits, emergency service, attendance at meetings, newsletter responsibilities, mail out procedures, collection of assessments, financial reporting and bookkeeping, resale and rental approvals, budgeting, correspondence and minutes, architectural approvals, administrative costs, and other services incidental to the association.
Selecting the Services and Items
Post choosing the services and items the management firms must bid on, a bid invitation should be devised with the specifications’ copy, association documents’ copy, site map, and other items applicable to the bidders. The bid package should comprise a timetable for responding to the bid invitation, a deadline to submit bids, prescribed bid form, and preparations for the management firm for visiting the community and getting their questions answered before submitting the bids.
References, At Least Three
A minimum of three references should be sought always from associations that are like your association. Find out the manager who would be on site and try to meet him in person to see if he and the board of directors would coexist.