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3 Common Lake and Pond Management Misconceptions

By Trent Nelson

As An Aquatic specialist with more than a decade of experience, I’ve assisted hundreds of property managers with their lake and stormwater pond management needs over the years. Despite the diverse types of lakes and ponds they oversee, I’ve noticed that many clients have the same set of concerns or misconceptions about their waterbodies. These often come to light as we work together to design a freshwater management program. Let’s take an in-depth look at some of these common assumptions. 

1. LAKES AND PONDS ARE PERMANENT FIXTURES IN THE LANDSCAPE

While lakes and ponds can be long-lasting features in our communities, they are not permanent. They fill with sediment that erodes from the shoreline or flows in during rainstorms. Weed growth and decomposition may lead to the development of muck. And trash, tree branches, and other pollutants can build up over time.

The aging of a lake or pond is a natural phenomenon, but can be highly...

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Water Heater Leaks

Common, Costly and Concerning
By Steven Fielding

THE GOVERNING BOARDS of condominium associations worry about many things. Reserves, rules enforcement, insurance costs, maintenance, pets, parking, and COVID are on a long list of things that keep trustees and association managers up at night. Water heaters probably are not, but they should be. Here are a few hard – or soggy – facts:

  • Water damage is one of the two leading property damage risks faced by homeowners, representing nearly one-third of all homeowner claims filed annually, exceeded only by wind and hail damage.
  • One in every 50 insured homeowners files a water damage claim every year; the average claim cost is about $7,000, adding up to more than $2.5 billion in insured losses annually, according to the Insurance Information Institute.
  • There are no statistics on how many of those claims are attributable to water heaters, but 75 percent of all water heaters will fail – usually without warning...
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Leading Five Generations in the Workplace

By Kelly Zibell, AMS, PCAM

Demographic changes are taking place both in the workplace and in community associations. Seventy-five percent of the workforce will consist of millennials by 2025, but more than 97 percent of homeowner leaders are traditionalists, baby boomers, and Generation Xers, according to an analysis from my company. This means that strategies for leading employees and working with residents and homeowner leaders should take generational differences into consideration.

Each generation in the workplace or in a community – from traditionalists to Generation Z – has distinct work or volunteer motivations, aspire to diverse career goals, and require specific types of communication, engagement, and management styles. The table shows a summary of attributes that distinguish each of these five generations.

Management company executives and association boards must learn how to address the changing needs of a multigenerational workforce or membership to...

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Kids in Parking Lots

A Quick Look At Safety And Fair Housing Rules

By Ellen Schuster, Esq. 

THE IDEA OF kids playing in parking lots makes directors and managers wince – and for good reason. The potential for injury evokes concerns about safety and association liability issues. But boards must balance these concerns with restrictive rules that may violate fair housing laws.

Like landlords, associations have the duty to protect residents from foreseeable risks of harm. Frances T. v. Village Green Owners Association (1986) 42 Cal.3d 490.1

It is foreseeable that people – especially children – who play in areas where cars are driving may be hit and injured by a car. This means that the association may have a duty to protect people from the risk of being hit and injured by a car. To meet this duty, many boards adopt rules prohibiting play or recreation and requiring children to be supervised by adults when in common area parking lots. Sounds simple enough, right?

...

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The Neighbors are Watching

By Kristin Amarillas, CMCA, AMS, PCAM 

CRIME IS ON the rise throughout California. This is not a general statement; it is a fact that has been shared with community managers throughout the state by local law enforcement. And it is not the first time we have heard this; in fact, we hear it every year. Since crime is regularly on the rise, we need to take steps to assist us in living with it in a way that will best prepare the community from being a target.

With so many options to address crime prevention, it can be difficult to decide how to proceed, especially when some are costly or require a good deal of labor and follow-up to be impactful. The truth is, the best crime prevention programs will always require a great deal of labor. If the efforts implemented are put in place and then left to be autonomous, they will become ineffective or disarmed quickly.

Gates, cameras, security (courtesy patrol, stationary, or armed guards), lighting, and a neighborhood watch...

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CAI BayCen 2022 Golf Tournament - Heroes & Villains

2022 events golf classic Jun 07, 2022

Thank you to our sponsors and CAI BayCen members who joined us in a spectacular game of golf as we hosted our 26th Annual Golf Classic on Monday, June 6th at Crow Canyon Country Club, Danville. It was a beautiful day for golf and we hope everyone had a wonderful time. Here are some of our favorite photos. We look forward to seeing everyone again next year. 

 

CAI BayCen Golf Tournament - Heroes & Villains

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Watching You, Watching Me

By Melissa Bauman Ward, Esq. 

When it comes to surveillance cameras – both for associations and members – policy considerations should be examined carefully.

SURVEILLANCE CAMERA SYSTEMS FOR ASSOCIATIONS

The presence of surveillance cameras in homeowners associations is not uncommon. Cameras are used for everything from crime deterrence to creating evidence of crimes (particularly theft and destruction of property) to figuring out who is leaving furniture by the dumpsters or not cleaning up after their dog. The predominant issue revolves around a member/resident’s right to privacy.

COMMON AREA PLACEMENT

Surveillance cameras typically point toward the common area, including the sidewalks, parking areas, driveway areas, landscaped areas, trash enclosures, and other recreational areas. Because anyone walking on the common area past the cameras will be caught on tape, so to speak, and will have their likenesses recorded, there is concern that their...

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Consistent Lake Management Helps Create Happier, Healthier Communities

By Noel Browning, Aquatic Biologist at SOLitude Lake Management

Lakes, rivers, beaches, and even swimming pools have beneficial effects on the well-being of visitors that are hard to define. Water is not only essential for our survival, it has a profoundly relaxing and refreshing impact on people’s mental health and happiness. Human beings will always be inextricably connected to water physically, mentally, and spiritually. This helps explain why communities near large water systems are common vacation destinations and highly desirable places for residential communities. It also underscores the importance of preserving our precious aquatic resources.

Maintaining balanced aquatic ecosystems is more important than ever as water scarcity, eutrophication, drought, and increasing demand continue to cause depletion and degradation of water quality worldwide. Water pollution can lead to harmful algal blooms, toxicity, nuisance and invasive aquatic weed growth, bad odors,...

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Business Development in a Virtual World

By Sydney DeMarco and Rachel Selwan, CED

 

Business development within the common interest development industry has always been an interesting study in both human relationships and the thin line between friendship and work. Most of our members who have the title of business developer or client services are actively marketing for their companies. They are associated with whatever services their companies offer, while at the same time, they are somehow their own separate entities. Typical marketing representatives aren’t just selling their companies to buyers, they’re selling themselves (not in a derogatory way, although some have blurred the line into a morally gray area), who they are, what their companies do and, by extension, the resources their companies have to offer to help make their clients lives easier.

Marketing has largely consisted of inviting clients to a wide range of fun events, whether it be out for a meal or coffee, or to sporting...

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Avoid the Collapse of Deferred Maintenance

By Andrea O’Toole, Rachel Miller, Tim Stauffer and Mary Prados Peterson

By now, most have seen the awful images of the collapsed Champlain Towers which resulted in nearly 100 deaths, countless injuries, property damage and unanswered questions about how this could have happened. While not every case of deferred maintenance has such catastrophic results, the Bay Area is not without its own examples. Six people died following a 2015 balcony collapse in Berkeley. That tragedy resulted in legislation affecting apartment buildings and, subsequently, condominium buildings. The protection of human life and avoidance of injury should be primary goals in determining why, when, and how community associations undertake maintenance, repair, and replacement. At the same time, protection of the property, and the association members’ significant investment in it, is also a key objective.

The authors of this article – a structural engineer, a community...

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