A study by the General Social Survey claims that 33.33% of Americans have never interacted with their neighbors. This is an alarming increase compared to the data collected 40 years ago, in which the number was 25%. With the emergence of social media apps like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, creating natural and personal connections can seem more challenging.
When homeowners feel disconnected from the neighborhood they are living in, they don’t feel the need to protect their community. This can hamper the reputation, growth and asset value of your HOA.
The onus lies on the Board of large HOAs to bring people residing in gated communities together by instilling within them a sense of belongingness.
What can you do to create a sense of community within a large HOA?
Here are some excellent ways to integrate your community by increasing homeowner participation.
1. Organize events
Community events are a great place for homeowners to mingle and get to know each other. You can hold events either on festive holidays or any other day of your choice. Having fun activities and functions that require group participation can help individuals interact and form connections. You can hold numerous events like bake sales, sports tournaments, community pool parties, movie nights and so much more.
2. Create shared spaces
Ensure that your community has ample common spaces for homeowners to meet and interact with each other informally, especially if you are a large HOA. Shared spaces can include recreational facilities like spas, theater, game rooms, gymnasiums, libraries, or sporting arenas. Allow residents to utilize these spaces for organizing events.
3. Create channels for communication
Create a group on WhatsApp, iMessage or any other app of your choice for homeowners to interact with each other and communicate their questions and grievances related to the community. Residents may take contact details of each other and create personal connections through such channels.
4. Build a tradition
Plan out annual traditions that homeowners are excited to attend. This could be anything from a yearly movie screening, a book fair, or a new year’s party. You can even make your community unique by creating special traditions such as sending cards to homeowners on their birthdays or having homeowners share their secret recipes.
5. Have a welcoming committee for new homeowners
This is a small gesture for new residents to feel welcome and participate in the association. You can either host an ice-breaking party or have a small group of people visit their home with goodies and welcome treats.
You can create an official website for your HOA to serve multiple purposes ranging from homeowner’s query forms to dispute resolutions, parking, club memberships or participation in festivities. You can even use the website to update homeowners about upcoming events and the regulations they need to abide by. This will restrict conflict among homeowners and increase community participation.
Take the help of our community association managers at CMA to have homeowners feel invested and contribute to the overall success of your community.