If you thought property management centered on overseeing the upkeep of a property or building, you’re not alone in that misconception. According to Otto Freund, serving as a community association manager (CAM) is, instead, all about managing people and providing quality customer service to both the association board and the property’s residents or owners. And, while Otto’s last name is pronounced ‘friend’, even he says that maintaining a sense of diplomatic professionalism is more important than being popular when trying to deliver that superior support.
Donna and Otto pull no punches as they discuss the myriad of skills an effective property manager must have, including diplomacy and negotiating talents, accounting/bookkeeping, budget preparation, mechanical knowledge (plumbing, electrical, HVAC), organizational skills for document management and project oversight, disaster planning and recovery expertise to address natural disasters, and more. They also delve into just how important it is to be able to apply all of those through the filter of association life.
Additional highlights include understanding:
- Whether the CAM’s priority is to get services at the lowest rate or to be actively committed to strategic fiscal responsibility;
- Why CAMs and boards tend to skip over the legal aspect of managing a property and how disastrous that can be;
- What the impact of noncompete agreements is having and will continue to have on the larger industry;
- A CAMs’ role in community association elections;
- What CAMs can do to protect themselves AND their associations from dysfunctional boards; and
- The importance of mentorship in preparing the next generation of CAMs.
BONUS: Anecdotes about how to navigate those rock-hard-place scenarios that CAMs face every day, and the surprising intricacies – from mowing to fertilization – of managing an association’s most costly item.
Think you know what community association life is all about? Think again. Residents must obey the rules, directors must follow the law, and managers must keep it all running smoothly. Take It to the Board explores the reality of life in a condominium, cooperative or homeowners’ association, what’s really involved in serving on its board, and how to maintain that ever-so-delicate balance of being legally compliant and community spirited. Leading community association attorney Donna DiMaggio Berger acknowledges the balancing act without losing her sense of humor as she talks with a variety of association leaders, experts, and vendors about the challenges and benefits of the community association lifestyle.
If you’ve got a question, Take It To The Board with Donna DiMaggio Berger – We Speak Condo & HOA!