Having a regular HOA newsletter sent to the homeowners in your community, whether by mail or by email, is a great way to keep everyone involved and inform the community of upcoming projects and events. It is something that you should not forego as it is an important step to improving your HOA.
HOA Newsletter Ideas: What to Include in Your Regular Newsletter
What should be included in an HOA newsletter? That is a common question many homeowners associations ask. It can be difficult to know what to put in your newsletter, especially if you write and distribute one on a regular basis. Below, you will find the essential items and some ideas on what you can include in your homeowner’s association newsletter:
1. Date, Issue, and Volume Number
Staying organized is paramount when it comes to writing and distributing community newsletters. A good way to keep track of your newsletters and maintain organization is to date each issue. If you can, it is even better to include an issue and volume number on each one.
This way, both the newsletter committee and the members of the community know which newsletter is the most current. It also eliminates the possibility of members mistakenly reading old news.
2. A Brief Overview
It is a good idea to let readers know what to expect in the HOA newsletter. How do you do that? By including a brief overview at the opening, of course!
Make sure to call attention to the most critical items that the newsletter will cover. This will allow you to capture their interest right from the start and encourage them to read through the whole thing.
3. A Message from the Board
If the HOA board has anything important to share, include it in the newsletter, too. It does not even need to be anything major or critical. The board or the president can simply share a few friendly words with community members at the beginning of the newsletter. This will help create a warm and neighborly atmosphere.
4. Updates from Recent Board Meetings
Your HOA newsletter is a valuable communication tool. It is the ideal place to let residents know about any issues recently brought to the board’s attention.
Any decision that the board made should also appear in the newsletter. Homeowners value transparency, and newsletters are a great way to communicate this information clearly and quickly to the whole community. You can also include updates regarding construction or maintenance as well as notices of upcoming projects.
5. Relevant Local News
Events in the wider community and the city as a whole can greatly affect your homeowner’s association. You can include any local news that may have an impact on the residents of your community so that everyone stays informed about these issues. Not everyone in your community watches the news, so residents will appreciate your newsletter filling in the gap for them.
6. Energy-Saving Tips
Energy conservation is a hot issue, and your HOA newsletter is a great place to share energy-saving tips. You need not limit yourself to energy-saving tips either. You can dive into other topics like water conservation, emergency preparedness, and the like. If your newsletter offers value to its readers, more people are more likely to anticipate the next issue.
7. Maintenance Tips
Your HOA newsletter can also be a place for other tips relating to maintenance in the community, such as gardening, taking care of the lawn, or preparing your residence for bad weather. You can even include tips on how homeowners can maintain and repair their household appliances, floor tiles, sidings, and the like. Again, it is all about offering information your readers will find value in.
8. Rules and Regulations Reminders
At times, it becomes necessary to remind homeowners of certain rules, especially if there are new rules or changes to existing ones. Reminding them in the form of an HOA newsletter can be a gentle way of encouraging homeowners to adhere to the rules set forth by the governing documents. This is particularly important as not all residents are familiar with the minute details of these documents.
9. Upcoming Events
Of course, it is always important to include a calendar in the newsletter with a list of all upcoming events in your HOA. This can be anything from your annual ice-cream social to dates of expected building projects. But, most importantly, it should include the dates of upcoming board meetings. This will help community members to stay involved.
10. Commendations of Residents or Board Members
Perhaps one of the most overlooked homeowners association newsletter ideas is to include commendations. Acknowledging residents, board members, or committee members through the written medium of a newsletter is a great way to spread goodwill throughout the HOA. It is important for these volunteers to feel valued. In each issue, you can include thanks and praises for community members that have gone above and beyond in making the association a better place.
11. Member News
Community members likely want to know what is going on with their neighbors as well. As such, give them an opportunity to share their own exciting news, such as an upcoming wedding, graduation, retirement, and any other milestone.
Members can also write their own content and submit it to the newsletter committee. When their content makes it to print, do not forget to give credit. Encouraging members to get involved in the writing process is one way to improve readership, too.
A good newsletter has a healthy mix of text and images. Along with sharing pertinent news, events, reminders, and tips, you should also include visuals that complement the content of your newsletter. This can be in the form of photos, graphs, charts, and infographics.
Additionally, you can even dedicate an entire section of the newsletter just for photos. A photo gallery showing fun times at a past community event, for instance, will allow members to relive good memories and encourage others to participate in future events. Just make sure you get permission to share the photos from the people in them and the people who took them.
13. A Summary
How do you end a newsletter? One way to effectively close a newsletter is to write a summary of its contents. You can also include an outline of the upcoming newsletter so that people know what to expect in the next issue.
How to Improve Your Homeowner Association Newsletter
What makes a good newsletter? A quick search online will give you access to a number of HOA newsletter templates and newsletter examples, but a good newsletter is more than just purely aesthetics. Although the design is definitely part of it, there are other things that comprise a good newsletter.
1. Make It Attractive
People are visual creatures, so it comes as no surprise that the design and layout of your HOA newsletter can affect readership. If a newsletter looks dull or boring, members will likely drop it.
Make sure to capture reader attention with an appealing yet professional design. The design should be coherent and consistent with the image of your homeowner’s association. Mix it up with different font styles, but see to it that they complement each other instead of clashing with each other. Keep it clean and classy yet engaging and attractive.
If you can’t spare the time or resources to have one professionally designed, you can look for free newsletter templates online. There are many websites that offer them, such as StockLayouts and even Pinterest. A well-rounded HOA software can also provide a homeowners association newsletter template together with other management solutions.
2. Make It Easy to Scan
You might ask, “How do I write a community newsletter?” The contents of your HOA newsletter should be concise and direct. That means no beating around the bush and keeping passive tones to a minimum. No one wants to read thick blocks of continuous text. Instead, break them up into shorter, more manageable paragraphs. Only expound on points further if you think it is necessary. Otherwise, keep it short and sweet.
It is also not a good idea to use jargon or technical terms within your newsletter. Make it easy for your readers to understand what you are trying to say. This is also where photos and graphics can come in handy. Images can break up the text and support your points as well.
3. Use Accurate Information
The main purpose of an HOA newsletter is to spread information to community members.
Therefore, it should go without saying that the information you do present should be accurate and up-to-date. Stay away from rumors. Your newsletter is not a tabloid or gossip column.
For instance, if you are reporting news, make sure to report it truthfully. Do not embellish. If you include contact information or website links, they should also be accurate. Test out the URLs before printing (for hard copies) or disseminating (for digital) your newsletter.
4. Maintain an Overall Positive Impression
Your HOA newsletter should discuss problems within the association as well as solutions, but that does not mean you can write in an overall negative tone. As a whole, your newsletter should be encouraging and constructive. This is where commendations and member news play a significant role. You should also refrain from discussing neighbor disputes.
5. Assign Important Roles
At the very least, your HOA newsletter should have an editor and a lead writer. Assigning people to these roles ensures that the responsibility of writing newsletters is always fulfilled. Although it is not necessary, board members can take part as well.
A Key Communication Tool
A regular HOA newsletter is a great way to keep community members involved, boost the morale of board members, and keep everyone educated and informed. Take some time this month to focus on the newsletter to see where you can improve it. Then, use these tips to help expand the content to make it relevant and interesting to everyone who reads it.
Communication is imperative in any homeowners association. Simplify communication in your community with the help of a comprehensive HOA management software like Condo Manager. Give us a call today at (800) 626-1267 or fill out this online form for a free demo of our product.
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