Building Strong Communities

Well-run HOAs and metro districts provide value to Colorado homeowners.  Their primary function is to ensure homeowner lots, common areas and facilities are all being well maintained to help protect the visual appeal of the neighborhood.  However, HOAs and metropolitan districts can provide value to homeowners beyond simply protecting neighborhood visual appeal.  They can provide neighborhoods with (1) the support structure necessary to organize community-building activities and events and (2) a powerful, organized voice at many levels of government

Community Activities and Events

Summer barbeques. Movie nights at the park.  Neighborhood service projects.  Ice cream socials.  Neighborhood Olympics.  Block parties.  Halloween costume competitions.  Christmas light competitions….

Community events are a great way to strengthen relationships among homeowners within the neighborhood. Good food and entertainment always attracts a crowd.  Friendly competition and opportunities to provide community

service can also draw people out of their houses as well! The obvious benefit to holding these events is they are fun! However, one often overlooked benefit neighborhoods receive from such events is that they help increase awareness and familiarity among neighbors which, in turn, inherently helps strengthen neighborhood watch programs. The success of neighborhood watch programs greatly increases in those neighborhoods where homeowners take the initiative to get to know the people who live in their neighborhood.

Relationship Building with Government Representatives and Organizations

Many quality-of-life issues impacting neighborhoods are outside the control of HOA and metro district boards. City, county, local districts and state governments usually provide many services to HOA- or metro district-operated neighborhoods and often make decisions that directly or indirectly impact the quality of life within these neighborhoods. HOAs and/or metro district boards that work with their government representatives are in a great position to encourage (or discourage) passage of laws, policies, ordinances and other decisions that will improve the quality of life within their respective neighborhoods.

How much time should HOA and/or metro boards invest in cultivating and maintaining relationships with various government organizations? The answer depends on many factors. Reviewing the following list of questions (within each tab below) should help HOA and metro district board members evaluate and answer this question:

  • City Government
  • County Government
  • Law Enforcement
  • State Reprentatives
  • School District
  • Regional Transit Authority

City Government

How important are the following to your neighborhood? (Note: Your city may or may not provide all of the services listed below.)

  • maintenance of a nearby city park or the quality of its facilities?
  • quality or cost of the city’s garbage collection services?
  • quality or cost of the city’s water services?
  • quality or frequency of street maintenance (including snow removal) occurring within your neighborhood?
  • need for speed bumps, stop signs and/or speed monitor signs within your neighborhood?
  • development or maintenance of roads and traffic lights within or near your neighborhood?
  • funding for your city’s police department?
  • type of commercial, industrial or residential development that will (or will not) occur in close proximity to your neighborhood

It is important to note that some of the services listed above may be provided through your county government or through one or more special districts. You should identify which services are provided by which of your governments and special districts.

Additional Perspective

To help provide more perspective regarding this last question, which of the following would you and others in your neighborhood like (or not like) to see built near your neighborhood?

  • King Soopers
  • Wal-Mart
  • Taco Bell
  • Goodwill Store
  • Safeway
  • Target
  • McDonalds
  • Home Depot
  • Apartments
  • Townhomes
  • Distribution center
  • Storage sheds
  • Cement plant
  • Car repair shop
  • Chili's Bar & Grill
  • Macaroni Grill
  • Multi-story office space
  • Pawn shop
  • Meat processing plant
  • Parking lot
  • 7-Eleven
  • Shell gas station
  • Bottling plant
  • Golf course
  • Waterpark
  • Church
  • Movie theaters
  • Car dealership