How to Increase HOA Fees: A Guide for HOA Boards in Corpus Christi, Texas

How to Increase HOA Fees: A Guide for HOA Boards in Corpus Christi, Texas

Like all planned communities, HOAs in Corpus Christi, TX have bills to pay. Workers, contractors, and providers of utility services are all paid from the fees collected from HOA homeowners.

Your HOA's expenses can increase due to various factors, such as inflation or service providers increasing their rates.

Where is the HOA going to find the additional funds to meet its financial obligations? Increasing HOA fees is the only practical solution, but it's not going to be received with open arms.

For positive results, HOA management must know how to tactfully introduce an HOA fee increase. Here are a few tips and strategies.

Have a Justifiable Reason for Increasing the Fee

Cases of corruption and embezzlement of HOA funds aren't uncommon. Residents are well aware that the board can go rogue and decide to exploit the community.

As such, calls for a fee increase may be met with suspicion. This is why it's important to have a justifiable reason for the increase.

While some reasons are self-explanatory, such as rising inflation, others might require more elaboration. For example, if security and cleaning providers have hiked their charges, don't expect residents to find the reasons justifiable.

Can't the estate replace the contractors? Without a satisfactory reason for wanting to hike the HOA fee, you're going to have a hard time selling the idea to the residents.

Clear and Transparent Communication

You might have a legitimate and even urgent reason to increase HOA fees, but without a clear communication strategy, getting everyone on board can be a challenge.

Don't wake up one morning and send an email to the homeowners about it. This is an important issue, and the HOA board needs to treat it as such.

A good strategy is to set the increase as an agenda for the next community meeting. This way, residents will have adequate time to process the information and plan accordingly. In fact, some members who never attend HOA meetings will attend the meeting because it touches on an important subject: their finances!

Use the meeting to present the case for the fee hike and give members enough time to air their views. Nobody should feel like they were left out of this process.

Try Small Annual Increases

You don't have to be a human behavior expert to know that most residents are going to resist a big, sudden HOA fee increase, especially in today's harsh economic times. On the other hand, small but periodic increases might not even catch the homeowners' attention.

For instance, you can increase the fee by 5% every year. Homeowners will become accustomed to the raises and pay without question, as long as their quality of HOA living is getting better and better.

Approach HOA Fees Increases Cautiously 

The price of things generally increases over time. HOA fees are not to be left behind; otherwise, sooner or later, the community's management will fall behind on its financial obligations.

Proper management of HOA funds is key to the success of an association community. At PMI Corpus Christi, we offer a wide range of association management services, including accounting and reporting. We will help you streamline your billing, collection, and budgeting of HOA fees.

Contact us to schedule a consultation.