The success of a community management company is dependent on the services it provides to the communities who rely on them. A large portion of these services come from third party vendors who maintain the properties, so a management company must be careful in their selection of vendors. Each community has different needs and vendors must be selected with those specific needs in mind. Needs can range from budget constraints to project goals and HOA management companies must also ensure vendors are properly licensed and insured.
Every community should set a clear budget and be mindful of it whether a vendor is being selected for a long-term maintenance contract or a special project. This budget ensures the work will fit into the community’s financial plans and prevents overspending. It should be large enough to allow the community to hire and retain good quality vendors; trying to pay the lowest rates often results in lower quality work. It also protects the company from having to hire a second vendor because the first was unsatisfactory.
Before beginning to look for a vendor, the goals of the project should be outlined and the work to be done defined. Different areas of service may have a numerous amount of specialties and it is important to find a vendor who either specializes or has experience in the nature of the project. The landscaping field, for example, covers everything from arborists to hard landscape architects and installers. Some companies may advertise themselves as simple ‘landscapers,’ and while they are more than capable of lawn care, they may not be well-versed in trimming trees.
Selecting a vendor who is properly licensed and insured protects the association. A vendor who has related certifications has spent the time and effort learning about the aspects of their work and is more likely to be better equipped to handle an problems that may arise. Proper insurance will prevent claims being filed with the association’s insurance in cases of on the job accidents. References can also aid in choosing a vendor, as word of mouth is often a great judge of the quality of a vendor’s work.
By selecting dependendable vendors, a community management company can be successful in providing the best possible services to its homeowners and condominium associations.