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using reserve funds

Reserve Funds: Don’t Be Scared to Use Them!

Reserves, like any other savings fund, often have too little money at any given time, leading to issues such as special assessments or deferred maintenance. But unlike retirement accounts, which benefit from having as much cushion as possible, it is possible that reserve funds contain too much money.

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Mitigating Financial Risk

Mitigating Financial Risk: Reserve Studies, Lending, and Insurance

In the ever-evolving landscape of community associations, one trend is becoming increasingly apparent: lenders and insurers are focusing on reserve studies. Traditionally overlooked and used as an internal planning tool, reserve studies are now capturing the attention of external individuals and institutions, particularly lenders and insurance companies.

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Masonry Building

Masonry Maintenance: A Guide for Condos and Community Associations

Masonry and brick buildings are beloved for their enduring class and elegance, but much like any beautiful thing that is to be long-lasting, they require continuous maintenance. For condominiums and community associations overseeing such buildings, implementing technically sound maintenance protocols is crucial for not only preserving aesthetics but also for optimizing costs long-term.

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SIRS vs Reserve Study

Navigating Financial Challenges: Structural Integrity Reserve Studies

Ensuring the structural integrity of buildings is a primary concern for community associations in Florida, where climate and weather events can pose a significant threat to buildings and their residents. Structural Integrity Reserve Studies (SIRS) address this, but the financial implications of the required implementation of these studies have proven a significant challenge for many associations.

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Reserve Study Terms

Reserve Study Terminology

Throughout the reserve study process, you’ll hear a lot of terminology that may be unfamiliar to you. Whether you’re just learning what a reserve study is or you have your first report in hand, here is a list of the terms you need to know.

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Reserve Study Process

Navigating the Reserve Study Process

One indispensable tool in your arsenal is the reserve study—a comprehensive examination of a property’s physical components and financial needs and a long-term capital plan to meet those needs. In this guide, we’ll walk you through each step of conducting a reserve study, demystifying the process, and empowering community associations to feel confident about the reserve study process.

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How To Read A Reserve Study Report

Getting the Most Out of Your Reserve Study Report

Reserve studies provide a comprehensive report containing what may seem like an endless amount of information about your association, and can be understandably intimidating to digest. While all the details provided are valuable, reading and utilizing a reserve study report doesn’t have to be an overwhelming task. If you’re looking to get to the meat and potatoes of your report, this guide is for you.

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Useful Lives and Cost Estimates – The Bottom Line

During the physical inspection portion of a reserve study, a reserve consultant determines the useful life of each reserve component and a cost estimate for its replacement. Here are some commonly asked questions about determining cost estimates and useful lives.

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Townhomes

How Much Does a Reserve Study Cost?

This is often one of the first questions a board asks when they are presented with the topic of reserve studies. As boards begin to engage with reserve study providers, odds are that most receive, at a minimum, three bids to conduct a reserve study, all of which present a different cost for a variety of reasons.

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Florida Condo

Choosing a Structural Integrity Reserve Study (SIRS) Provider

By now, if you have buildings of 3 or more stories, your condominium association or co-op has hopefully begun the process of fulfilling Florida’s structural integrity reserve study (SIRS) requirements and, if applicable, milestone inspection requirements. Because these laws are new, it can be understandably stressful or conflicting to choose a firm to conduct your SIRS or milestone inspection. Every community has different needs, so what route is best for your association?

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A Closer Look at The Latest Changes to CAI’s Reserve Study Standards

In March of 2022, a task force of fourteen community association industry experts gathered to begin the process of revising Community Association Institute’s Reserve Study Standards. Originally published in 1998, the Standards provide a consistent framework for reserve studies. Since then, both the community association and reserve study industries have grown, and the Standards have been revised to reflect the current climate. Here’s what you need to know!

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Inflation

Inflation and Capital Planning: What You Need To Know

Inflation. We’ve all heard the word, and frankly, we’re all probably sick of hearing it. The reality is that many associations may feel the impact of this current inflationary period, regardless of when it lets up, for years to come. Part of what makes this particular period of inflation so impactful is that prior to March 2020, we experienced a fairly unprecedented level of inflationary stability ranging from 3-5% each year.

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Long-Lived Assets

Long-Lived Assets: The Bottom Line

When conducting a reserve study, one of the first steps your consultant will take is evaluating the inventory of your community’s components and classifying them into groups, with reserve studies focusing most prominently on reserve components. However, long-lived assets are equally as important to keep an eye on.

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