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When the HOA Board Loses Control: Managing Unruly HOA Management Companies

HOA Board vs Management Company

A smoothly functioning Homeowners’ Association (HOA) relies not only on an efficient board but also on a capable HOA management company. However, situations can arise where the HOA board finds itself struggling to rein in the actions of the management company. In this article, we explore the challenges that come with an uncontrollable management company and provide insights into how HOA boards can regain authority.

The Importance of a Cohesive Partnership

The relationship between an HOA board and a management company is essential for the well-being of a community. While the board sets policies and makes decisions, the management company implements them. When this partnership functions harmoniously, it results in effective community management.

Signs of Trouble

Recognizing signs that the HOA management company is slipping out of control is crucial:

  1. Excessive Autonomy: If the management company starts making decisions without board approval, it can be a red flag.
  2. Lack of Transparency: If the board feels left in the dark about the company’s actions, it indicates a breakdown in communication.
  3. Ignoring Board Input: When the company consistently disregards the board’s directives, it undermines the partnership.
  4. Financial Irregularities: Unexplained expenses, mismanagement of funds, or irregular accounting practices warrant concern.

Causes of the Issue

Several factors can contribute to the loss of control over the management company:

  1. Lack of Oversight: Insufficient monitoring by the board can allow the company to overstep boundaries.
  2. Weak Contractual Agreements: A poorly drafted contract might not provide clear guidelines for the company’s responsibilities and limitations.
  3. Change in Leadership: A change in company leadership can lead to a shift in priorities that conflicts with the board’s vision.

Reclaiming Control

  1. Review the Contract: Assess the existing contract and ensure that it outlines the roles, responsibilities, and limits of the management company.
  2. Enhance Communication: Regular meetings and open channels of communication can bridge gaps and foster a collaborative environment.
  3. Establish Boundaries: Clearly define the decision-making authority of the board and the management company to avoid conflicts.
  4. Monitor Financials: Regularly review financial statements and budgets to prevent any mismanagement of funds.
  5. Consider Legal Recourse: If efforts to regain control fail, seeking legal advice can help determine the best course of action.

Building a Strong Partnership

Restoring control over an unruly HOA management company requires dedication and collaboration:

  1. Unified Approach: Board members must present a united front and communicate expectations clearly.
  2. Community Involvement: Involving homeowners in the process can garner support and encourage accountability.
  3. Transparency: Keeping homeowners informed about decisions and actions can prevent misunderstandings.


A balanced relationship between the HOA board and the management company is essential for effective community management. When the management company begins to operate beyond the board’s control, it’s vital to address the issue promptly. By identifying signs of trouble, addressing causes, and taking proactive measures, the board can restore authority and ensure that the community’s best interests are upheld.

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