1. Research Management Groups
The first step in the selection process should be to determine the companies that you will
request to submit proposals. This is where you should gather information about the
professionalism, company philosophy, and experience of the firms and the individuals within
the firm. This should be done first by speaking with a principal of each firm and then
requesting written information about the services they provide.
Evaluate the professionalism and commitment of the firms by asking them about the
qualifications and experience of the principal and staff. Do they belong to organizations such
as The Community Associations Institute and the California Association of Community Managers?
These organizations offer certification and designation programs that test the basic knowledge
as well as the advanced management skills of Community Association Managers. For more
information on these programs see our
Professional Designations page.
The basic philosophy of the firm should be evaluated to determine if it matches that of your
community. Questions should include:
Does the management firm manage your association, or do they assist the Board and carry out
their directives? In other words does the Board set policy, or does the management firm
dictate to you?
- What is the organizational structure of the company? Is it horizontal or vertical?
- What is the firm's commitment to Customer Service?
- What is the business environment at the firm? Visit the office and take a tour.
- What education does the firm provide for their staff and Board members?
What accounting systems are used? Is this the same system used for enforcement letters or
does the company offer a customizable database?
How many Associations does the Manager that would be assigned to your association handle?
What are their sizes? Are they condominiums or planned unit developments?
To evaluate experience, request information about the firm and the members of
the management team.
- How long has the company been in the business of managing community associations?
How long have the principals been in the industry. What licenses, credentials, and
designations do they hold? What is their direct management expertise?
- What is the experience level of the management and homeowner services staff?