A growing number of condominium, cooperative and homeowner associations are using the World Wide Web to communicate with residents and improve services, according to the Community Associations Institute. While CAI reports that only about 50 community associations are linked to the Institute's web site, the nation's 205,000 associations are awakening to the benefits of paperless, real-time communication.
An estimated 28 million households have Internet access today, and community associations have discovered that hosting a web site can improve the timeliness of communication between boards and members and foster better understanding of association rules. Besides posting association documents such as bylaws and conditions, covenants and restrictions (CC&Rs), value-added features of community association web sites include:
On-line service desks to speed management companies' response to service requests E-mail links to board members and community manager to provide direct communication Links to related web sites, such as CAI, local chapters, state legislative action committees and state regulatory agencies Forms that allow homeowners to apply for architectural modification, clubhouse rental, and pool and parking passes electronically Keyword search engines that allow members to access specific provisions in governing documents Chat rooms that foster real-time communication, especially for nonresident owners Meeting schedules, approved meeting minutes and association newsletters.
CAI offers information on discount web-hosting and -design companies, free keyword search engines, free webserver programs and software applications and URLs of innovative community association web sites. For more information, call CAI at 703/548-8600 and request a free sample of the May/June issue of CAI's Community Management newsletter.
The Community Associations Institute is a nonprofit association created in 1973 to educate and represent the nation's 205,000 community associations—condominium associations, homeowner associations and cooperatives. CAI members include homeowners, associations and related professionals and service providers.
MEDIA CONTACT: Blaine TobinPhone: 703-970-9235