Onsite community management is a unique type of HOA management. Onsite managers work on the premises of a particular community, overseeing management duties from within the community itself. Many duties overlap with their offsite colleagues but there are particulars that set onsite managers – and the service they provide – well apart.
The difference between portfolio management and onsite HOA management
“Portfolio management” describes a structure wherein a manager works offsite at the management company’s office, visiting the community to perform duties such as property inspections. This manager usually oversees multiple accounts on behalf of the management company; however, there are instances of a portfolio manager who is dedicated to providing service to a single community while still working from the management company’s office.
“Onsite community management” is typically in place to handle management of large, complex operations. Even a simple onsite management structure is comprised of at least two positions – a general manager (or executive director) and an administrative assistant. On the other end of the spectrum, depending on the need, some communities employ onsite management teams that can reach fifty or more.
Communities that benefit from onsite management
Communities with complicated amenities or highly attentive service needs receive the greatest benefit from an onsite management team. Many of these communities include large recreation programs, athletics complexes, community-based sports teams, transportation services, onsite security patrol or full-suite event planning services. Each of these community features requires close management.
High rise buildings often put onsite property managers in place to oversee the unique factors associated with managing such a volume of units in the building or complex. High rises can also have complicated amenities to manage, such as pools, 24-hour recreation areas, industrial-sized HVAC units, in-unit washer/dryers, valet, and more.
Onsite manager roles & duties
The general roles and duties of an onsite manager are the same as a portfolio manager but are frequently more complicated, given the scope of the average association with onsite management. Onsite management teams are usually led by a general manager who oversees all aspects of HOA management, with other managers on the team handling the day-to-day HOA management responsibilities.
Like portfolio managers, onsite managers are tasked with scheduling and facilitating board meetings and carrying out board actions. Because they are onsite daily, onsite managers are generally more accessible to the board and association members, often developing close personal relationships with homeowners.
Onsite management teams are also deeply involved in the overall strategy and future direction of the community. They focus on long-term strategic planning, recreation planning, and elevating the community’s brand to maintain a solid position in the market.
The value of onsite HOA management
Onsite managers bring tremendous value to an HOA. Because their complete attention is devoted to that particular association, they are able to focus all their effort and professional expertise on ensuring that the community reaches its full potential. Onsite management services come with a higher price tag, but since most HOAs with onsite managers are large communities, management fees are divided between a greater number of units. This economy of scale yields a high value for this level of personalized service.
Onsite property management is an ideal solution for sprawling communities with many amenities to oversee or communities that prefer an extremely high service level. If your community could benefit from onsite community management but doesn’t have the infrastructure in place to support an onsite manager, consider speaking with your management company about switching to a dedicated manager who works solely with your community but is stationed offsite.