RealManage Insight

Understanding the Role of an HOA Secretary

by Jennifer Harvey on Nov 3, 2022 1:30:00 PM

A homeowners association (HOA) secretary is an important individual without which the association cannot function well. The secretary handles different roles that play a crucial role in the overall productivity of the board.

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If you are a board member planning to run for the role or are already holding the position, it is important to learn about the role of the HOA secretary and overall HOA Management to keep you stay updated and make informed decisions. 

What Does an HOA Secretary Do?

HOA secretary tasks can vary from one association to another, depending on the association’s governing documents, state laws, and preferences of the board. Here are some of the most common responsibilities of an HOA secretary. 

Keeps Accurate Records for the Association 

Homeowner's associations maintain records and documents of the association. The HOA secretary is responsible for ensuring that the records and documents and well collected, organized, and stored. However, they typically delegate these responsibilities to a management company. 

Proper organization of the documents is important because a homeowner may request records from the association at any time. Organized records prevent the association from wasting time looking for the documents. 

Sends Out Notices of Meetings 

Homeowners associations hold board meetings regularly and annual meetings once per year. The meetings are usually well-organized, and the notices are sent to the expected attendees in time. This is often the responsibility of the HOA secretary but is done through the management company. 

The secretary will make sure that the required notices to all property owners are in accordance with all the requirements noted in their documents and state law.   

Prepares Meeting Agendas 

Before a homeowners association holds an annual or regular board meeting, they require agendas to prepare for the meeting and guide them through the items they will discuss.

The HOA secretary is often responsible for preparing the meeting agendas on time, again, usually delegating this to the community manager but with their guidance and oversight.  The agenda will include various elements such as topics to be discussed, objectives, and time frames. The secretary, president, and community manager usually work together to prepare agendas. 

Records Meeting Minutes 

The association secretary is often expected to attend the board meetings and take minutes. The minutes are the official meeting notes recording all actions taken, who made each motion, and what was approved.

Although in many communities, the Secretary and/or Community Manager take the minutes, it is best practice to have the minutes taken by a hired recording secretary. Meeting minutes should be brief and not include extraneous discussion.  

Updates the Community 

Association members have the right to stay updated with the latest developments and processes in the association. There could be many things that the board is planning, and it is important to update the community. This is often the work of the HOA secretary.

The secretary should take steps to be sure that the community’s latest developments are communicated to members.  This may include considering raising monthly dues and how the board spent assessments, among other new developments. For this to be effective, the board may need to adopt a quality communication tool so that every member gets the information timely. 

Timely Document Validation 

Sometimes The association secretary may also be asked to witness official documents that require signatures. This means the secretary puts their signature on the documents to validate documents. The documents may include vendor contracts or management contracts. As an HOA secretary, you may also need to approve certain documents, such as meeting minutes, to make them official. 

The Bottom Line 

From the above list, it is clear that being the HOA Secretary is a huge job!  There are many tasks and responsibilities that are needed for the overall success of the association.

If you or your board are having challenges managing your work, an experienced HOA Management like RealManage can help cover the full range of challenges your association is facing. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your community.

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