HOA Annual Calendar: Why It’s Important And How To Make One

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calendar notes | hoa annual calendar

An HOA annual calendar is a helpful tool to keep your community on track. The HOA can pre-schedule major events so board members, volunteers, staff, and residents know what to expect in the coming year. It also helps you track renewal dates and important deadlines.

What Is an HOA Annual Calendar? 

An HOA annual calendar is precisely as it sounds. It’s a yearly calendar that keeps track of important dates for the community. This can include everything from monthly board meetings to contract renewal dates and election periods. 

The HOA annual operations calendar helps the volunteers, residents, and board members prepare for these important events. For example, if the HOA elections are coming up, the board can start looking for candidates weeks or even months ahead. Suppose a vendor’s contract renewal date is on the horizon. In that case, the HOA can work on renegotiating the terms or find a new vendor if the current vendor relationship is not working.

HOAs can create the calendar at any time of the year. However, it’s usually best to do this while planning the HOA budget. This will help the board visualize what needs to be done and how much they must spend for each occasion or task. 

Why You Need an HOA Annual Calendar

Every HOA board has a fiduciary duty to the community they serve. They must fulfill all their enforcement, maintenance, and management responsibilities. However, keeping track of all community activities and legal deadlines can be tough. While an HOA secretary may help with organization, they cannot always monitor every deadline and requirement.

To stay efficient and compliant with regulations, the association must develop an HOA annual plan or calendar that contains all of the community’s goals and objectives. This plan or calendar will serve as a guide for the coming year. Without a calendar, the board may forget tax deadlines or annual audits they must comply with, and they may find themselves in legal trouble all because of an honest mistake. 

Forgetting other activities, such as board meetings, construction plans, and scheduled maintenance, may not carry as many consequences as forgetting tax returns. Nonetheless, the residents will notice and make complaints. Some may even file lawsuits against the HOA. Whether the association wins or not, it carries some serious financial consequences. 

What to Include in the Calendar

An HOA calendar must be comprehensive. It should include all essential events and deadlines to prevent financial, legal, and operational consequences. Here is a breakdown of what to include.

1. Meeting Dates

Homeowners associations should include all community meetings in the calendar. This includes everything from the annual meeting to board meetings and even committee meetings. Make sure nothing gets left out to keep the community well-informed.

Adding these to the calendar will help all participants prepare their feedback, suggestions, and questions before the meeting. As a result, HOA meetings will be more productive and efficient. 

2. Preventive Maintenance

checking the roof | hoa annual calendar

HOAs must maintain the common areas. Preventive maintenance is key to prolonging the lifespan of community assets. Make sure to schedule these activities on the calendar. Common preventive maintenance activities include carpet cleaning, equipment servicing, and gutter cleaning.

3. Reserve Projects

Do some things need major repairs or replacements in the common areas? These fall under the reserve project category. Typically, HOAs dip into the reserve funds to fulfill them. Remember to write them down on the community calendar, too. Doing so will help residents plan when they can and use certain amenities such as gyms and pools. It will allow them to plan and use amenities outside the community during the repairs. 

4. Amenity Open and Closing Dates

Some amenities close for prolonged periods. For example, most swimming pools close during winter to ensure resident safety. While these dates seem minor to the board, they matter to the HOA residents. List them down so people know when certain facilities are closed. 

5. Election Milestones

Elections happen almost every year for homeowners associations. It’s a significant event the board and community members must plan for in advance. Schedule each election milestone, including nominations, election material mailings, and meeting plans. The residents must actively participate in the elections to keep the neighborhood healthy. 

6. Budget Preparation Cycle

Annual budgets are vital for homeowners associations. Without a new budget, the HOA is forced to use the old budget in the coming year. While this may work sometimes, it’s usually not a good idea. Vendor prices, insurance rates, and material costs typically rise every year. The old budget may no longer apply, resulting in a shortage of funds or overspending. 

We recommend scheduling all phases of the budget preparation cycle in the community calendar. Include all the important dates, such as budget committee meetings, budget draft mailings, and target finalization dates. 

7. Inspection Schedules

HOAs must regularly inspect the common areas to address minor and major issues. It’s also a useful way to determine when items might need replacing. Putting inspection dates on the calendar is an excellent way to remind the board when to call an inspector.

8. Insurance Policy Milestones and Renewals

Homeowners associations must maintain specific insurance policies to comply with state law and the governing documents. Don’t let policy milestones and renewal dates lapse. Otherwise, the community might be left financially vulnerable. 

9. Scheduled Audits

HOAs do not conduct audits every year. When it is time for an audit, it will be helpful to schedule it in advance. It’s best to schedule it during the first two months of the coming fiscal year. Once scheduled, the board can start compiling all the necessary materials, such as financial reports, records, ledgers, receipts, and bank statements.

10. Tax Dates

tax time notes | hoa annual calendar

While some HOAs may be tax-exempt, most associations still need to file the necessary taxes to comply with regulations. Failing to do so will incur monetary penalties. Remember to schedule it in the calendar to prepare all the requirements before the deadline. 

11. Holidays

National holidays affect office and building closures. They also affect when staff and volunteers will not be on-site to help the board. Including holidays in the calendar will help you plan around them. 

12. Community Events

Special events such as community Christmas parties, cookouts, and festivals must be scheduled early. After all, giving event committees enough time to plan is the key to success. It’s also a great way to inform the residents which days they should keep vacant for community activities. 

13. Newsletter Publications

The HOA must plan when and how often to release the community newsletter. It will allow the newsletter committee to devise a plan and recruit enough volunteers.

Keeping Track with an HOA Calendar

Every HOA board must fulfill its obligation to the community. With so many tasks to juggle, it can be easy to forget a few minor details. An HOA annual calendar can help the board keep track of all the details — whether large or small. 

Does your association need help with community management? Landmark Community Management is the best around Texas. Call us now at (512) 569-5527 or contact us online for more details!