Unlocking HOA Complexity

Homeowners are often unsure about how HOAs operate—and how they can get involved and contribute toward improving their communities. Walters Management has provided answers to the most frequently asked questions that we receive from homeowners and clients below.

If you don’t find the answer you’re looking for or if there’s something specific we can help you with, please contact us.

Living in a Community (Homeowners) Association:

What is a Community Association?

In California, a community or homeowners association is often referred to as a common interest development. A common interest development (CID) is a planned neighborhood or community where all owners are members of the Association. The Association is a mutual benefit non-profit corporation subject to all Civil and Corporation Codes in California. Recent statistics indicate that there are more than 40,000 common interest developments organized as Associations in the State.

What does a Board of Directors do?

The Board of Directors consists of members of the Association who are elected, on a volunteer basis, to represent the interests of the community members and to conduct the business of the Corporation.

How do I find out what the Board talks about at meetings?

Boards are required to post meeting notices as well as publish or make available minutes of all regular meetings. This information is easily available by contacting your management team.

How do I get involved with the Board or Committees?

The best way to get involved is to attend Board Meetings. Volunteers are always needed and encouraged. Additionally, each year the Association must conduct an annual meeting in which Directors are elected by the members.

What are the ‘legal documents’ and why are they important?

Generally, the legal documents consist of the Articles of Incorporation (which establish the Association as a legal entity and Corporation), the Bylaws (which outline Board responsibilities, member rights to information and scheduling of meetings) and the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs). The CC&Rs serve as the legal contract between each member and the Association. The CC&Rs also detail property restrictions and protections such as architectural control, use restrictions, assessment and voting rights and lender considerations and general operating requirements of the Association itself.

For Walters Management Clients:

I can’t find my access code – how may I obtain that information?

If you have previously registered to use Walters’ Website, you may recover your password by entering your account number and email address in the “Password” tab of our homeowner Website. If you have not previously accessed our Homeowner Website, you will need your account number located in the upper right-hand corner of your statement and the system assigned password located in the upper right-hand corner of your statement just below the account number.

How do I make an assessment payment?

Log in to your Walters client account, .

How can I see the balance on my account?

Log in to your Walters client account, .

What does my assessment pay for?

Every year, the Board reviews and adopts a budget for the community association. You may easily obtain a copy of this budget by contacting your management team. A basic answer is that assessments pay for the maintenance, operation, upkeep and long-term repair and replacement of all the common areas within your community. Also, as a non-profit corporation, your Association has administrative expenses including insurance, financial statement reviews, tax filings, license renewals, and management.

How do I know the Association is using assessments appropriately?

The Association is required to distribute the annual budget and an annual financial review which is generally conducted by an independent CPA. Copies of these documents are available at any time. As a member of the Association, each owner may also review a monthly financial report whenever requested.

How do I find out the management team for my community?

Please contact the appropriate office for your location and we will be happy to provide that information to you. Find our office locations on the Contact page.

What does Walters Management do for my community?

As the management agent, we work at the direction of the Board of Directors. In addition to preparing for Association Meetings, both administratively and operationally, we regularly inspect the common area, supervise association vendors and contractors, and obtain proposals for new projects and maintenance services. Board Members are volunteers, therefore, our time is spent assisting the Board in meeting all compliance issues with Federal, State and local laws and codes. We provide customer service to residents and address community and neighbor complaints and work with the Board on the implementation of community guidelines and enforcement. Perhaps one of the most important aspects of our responsibilities, which is sometimes overlooked, is the preparation and generation of balanced, accurate and fiscally responsible financial reports. We oversee and produce all accounting functions for your association, including, but not limited to, budget planning, accounts receivable, accounts payable, general ledger preparation and solicitation of sound financial investment advice.

Customer Service:

I have a property emergency, who do I call?

The best thing to do is to call our office and ask to speak to the management team. Phone numbers and contact information can be found on the Contact page.

How can I contact my management team?

There are various options – phone, email, fax or by letter. Most wish to use email or phone – a simple way to communicate is to complete a Customer Service request.

There are some maintenance items around my home, how do I get those addressed?

You may easily email or phone your management team or simply complete Maintenance Request. Your management team will contact you to review your request and schedule the appropriate repair. Sometimes, maintenance items may not be the responsibility of your Association. If that is the case, the management team will assist you in determining the appropriate resolution of your request.

I am concerned about my neighbors, what do I do?

Much depends upon the type of concern. If there appears to be an issue in which the Police Department should be involved, please contact your local enforcement agency immediately. If your concern pertains to rules violations (such as parking, property maintenance, or nuisance issues), please contact your management team. Be prepared to provide documentation and confirmation from another neighbor as to the type of violation and ongoing problem – this information is needed for effective enforcement by the Association. And, if the opportunity presents itself and you feel comfortable doing so, please consider contacting your neighbor directly – sometimes, many issues are easily resolved through a simple conversation.

I need access to my community facilities or parking information, who do I call?

You may contact your management team or to your Walters account for details.

Community Guidelines and Violations:

Who decides the community guidelines?

The CC&Rs for your Association establish many of the use restrictions for your home and your community. The Board of Directors is empowered to further outline these restrictions through the development of community guidelines and rules and regulations. Additionally, many rules are developed to support local ordinances or requirements.

How can I get a copy of the guidelines? Will this help me determine if there is a violation?

You may easily obtain a copy of the guidelines by contacting your management team or accessing your community’s Web-portal through your homeowner log-in. And yes, the stated guidelines and rules and regulations will explain any potential rules violations and the appropriate method of reporting a violation.

Should I call the police?

The first and most complete answer is Yes! If you believe there is an issue of your personal safety or a property emergency (fire, theft, vandalism), please contact the local authorities. After you have reported the information to the police, then please contact our office. Clearly, some issues are simply rules violations and appropriately, the police will not respond. In this context, however, it is better to be safe and rely on your common sense.

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