Board Member, Committee Member and Management Company – Working Relationships

Board Member, Committee Member and Management Company: Working Relationships

Committee structure is absolutely critical to the effectiveness of the Association. There are occasions where the dynamics and reporting or working relationships between Board members, Committees and Management become muddy and the outcome is often frustration and a feeling of wasted time and effort by all parties involved.

A refresher course is sometimes in order to bring the team back together.

Roles: Committees

The Board expects Committees to assist the Board in gathering essential information; research issues and provide recommendations; assist the Board in maintaining standards; assist in achieving financial objectives; utilize management to coordinate with the Board and other committees.

Committees are not permitted by most Governing Documents or by the Committee Charters to bind the Association to contracts, financial commitments, or any other binding agreement.

Committee charters should periodically be reviewed to align the current Board’s charge to each committee. This is the foundation of the Committees responsibility and should be clearly understood by the sitting committee. Likewise, there should be periodic review of the committee’s task list to ensure they are working in concert with the Boards objectives.

Roles: Management

The Board expects Management to assist and facilitate the work of committees; coordinate issues between committees; receive committee reports and coordinate recommendation with the Board; advise committees and the Board of CC&R and Bylaw requirements as necessary; execute the decisions of the Board

Management should function as an overseer or facilitator to ensure the Committees and Board are following the governing documents of the community. In addition, Management is responsible for making sure that the vision and direction of the Board is followed. In an ideal case, Management would be a consensus builder. In an imperfect world, Management will be charged with the obligation of reporting to the Board and Committees when their paths are straying from the association documents or State laws. At theses times, Management will make recommendations to the Committees and Board. In some cases, the recommendation will be a clear path of guidance; in others it will be to seek the advice of counsel.

In a relationship building process, it will be expected that Committee members, volunteer groups, advocated or individual Board member do not consciously as Management to perform tasks or services that is broadly known the Board does not want or will not approve but stems from personal agenda. Everyone needs to follow to processes. This process protects the Associate and all of its members from liability.


Committees meet independently, assisted, facilitated, and advised by management. Neither the Committee nor the Staff has any authority to act on the decisions of the Committee. Committees and Management are a team which support of the Board. Board makes all official decisions to carry out the recommendations of the committees, but has no obligation to follow committee recommendations.


Management provides background information to accompany committee recommendations. Committees and Management need to work in a cooperative effort to provide the Board factual and complete information. In many cases committees need to work in harmony with each other to ensure their recommendations can be fully supported financially and operationally.

Committees and Management cannot nullify any action by the Board. The committee has the responsibility to present the facts, and then to further state the committees support or non-support of an issue, along with the reasons the committee supports or does not support an issue, in order to permit an informed decision.

One final thought, please be reminded that homeowners sometimes act upon what is termed a “good faith opinion.” In this scenario a homeowner has a conversation with a person who has expressed or implied authority to represent the Association generally a committee volunteer, Board member or person on the management staff. A simple expression consistent with “this will be fine” or “we can make it okay” or even “yes, you can do that” becomes the impression to the homeowner that they have approval. The courts could rule that the homeowner acted based on a good faith opinion. The Association is then left without the ability to act differently.

It is through fully developed working relationships that all three parties Committees, Boards and Management can effectively implement the vision and mission statements of a successful community.

Property Managers – 10 Tips You Must Have to Manage Commercial Property Successfully

To manage commercial property well as a property manager in a real estate agency you need to set some rules and be very focused on key tasks that impact the property. Without doing that, the sheer volume of work and the variation of it each day will distract you and the managed property will suffer. The end result is an unhappy landlord and uncontrolled tenants; that spells disaster.

Let’s now say one thing to qualify the above situation. Commercial property managers (or any type of property manager for that matter) are some of the busiest people in the real estate industry. They also have to be highly intelligent to grasp the variation of issues that come at them.

In commercial property management the variation of tasks is broad and detailed. Here is a list of just some of the bigger things that you have to handle every day:

  • Collection of rent in a timely way
  • Checking on and following up on arrears
  • Maintaining the property to landlords instructions
  • Communicating with the landlord regularly on current issues
  • Preparing financial reports at the end of each month
  • Preparing budgets for income and expenditure performance for financial years
  • Response to tenant requests and communications
  • Keeping on top of lease dates and rent reviews or options
  • Negotiating new leases and processing them with the landlords solicitor
  • Negotiating rent reviews with sitting tenants
  • Maintaining tenant relationships
  • Making the tenant mix work to optimise customer visits
  • Instructing contractors to complete maintenance tasks
  • Processing invoices and work order payments
  • Monitoring trust account monies and payments
  • Essential services performance of building plant and machinery

So the list does not stop here and goes on; it would be easy for me to put over 100 things that are critical to the commercial property management task. This then says that the commercial (or retail) property manager is a highly intelligent and detailed specialist in investment property. They can impact the property performance in a major way for the long term; perhaps more than any other real estate specialist.

For property managers to stay in control each and every day and to keep their portfolio at optimal performance they could use the following as a work model:

  1. Take written notes of all conversations and instructions from tenants, landlord, contractors, and other third parties.
  2. Keep the landlord up to date every few days on current issues and matters of progress
  3. Communicate with tenants regularly so you earn their trust and respect.
  4. Know your leases for each property in great detail so you can respond correctly when something goes wrong.
  5. Understand the landlord’s rules and benchmarks when it comes to property performance and stick to those rules.
  6. Time is your only resource so your time each day has to be under control. Focus on particular key tasks at set times to get things done. Yes this does mean that sometimes the routine will be derailed, but 75% of your day has to be under control.
  7. Make sure your reporting to the landlord is comprehensive and covers key issues of income, expenditure, leases, tenants, maintenance, budgets, arrears, and building performance.
  8. Know how to respond when something big happens of an emergency nature (because it will one day when you least expect it).
  9. Control your reports, leases, letters, emails, communications, negotiations, vacancies, arrears, and trust monies.
  10. Get back to people when you say you will. Do not overlook the value of quality responses and communication. Your landlord as the client should be at the top of the response list.

It is easy to see that a skilled property manager has to be a comprehensively competent real estate specialist. Commercial property management is like that; only the best people should apply (as they say).

The best commercial property managers control some of the largest buildings, shopping centres, industrial parks, or office towers. Are you up to the challenge?