Increasing Attendance at HOA Annual Meetings
It can be disappointing and costly to schedule an annual meeting of homeowners only to learn that you must adjourn the meeting for lack of a quorum. Adjourned meetings can result in increased management fees, increased inspector of election fees, increased legal fees, extra room rental fees, and the delay in getting important association business completed.
While every member of every homeowner association should understand that it is in their best interest to attend the annual meeting of the members and/or mail in a ballot for the election of directors, many do not attend these important meetings or vote resulting in a failure to achieve a quorum. Consequently, it is often necessary to create an incentive to increase attendance so that those who are serious about improving and maintaining their community can do so.
While incentives should not be necessary, years of experience have shown that one or more of the following ideas will increase attendance:
Consider holding a raffle for those in attendance. The lucky winner could win:
- A large indoor potted plant provided by the landscape maintenance company, or
- The payment of one month’s assessment. A thirty unit building with a monthly assessment of $300 results in a cost of only $10 per unit per year.
- A $100 gift certificate at a local restaurant that may provide the gift certificate at a fraction of the face value just to get the advertising and good will.
Consider inviting a speaker to occupy everyone’s time and provide valuable information while ballots are being counted. Consider:
- A Neighborhood Watch organizer or security consultant to discuss improving safety within the community
- An insurance agent to discuss the importance of loss assessment coverage, umbrella policies, earthquake coverage, renters insurance, and more.
- A city or county official who can update the community on projects, budgets, planned improvements, and other significant matters.
- With their consent, consider introducing new homeowners who have recently moved into the community.
- Consider serving a light dinner or a special dessert.