It's almost a mantra: the more you know, the better off you are—certainly when it comes to doing the job of a cooperative, condominium or HOA board member. No matter how enthused and engaged a new board appointee may be, they don't come to the job knowing everything; and no matter how seasoned a veteran board member may be, they can always hone their skills and add to their knowledge. To help all board members do their job better, there are an array of educational resources and opportunities throughout the region.
In fact, few volunteer jobs are as big and involving as serving as a board member for a co-op or condo. In some cases, it means helping to run a multimillion dollar corporation in one’s spare time. It means managing the place one lives—along with a couple hundred neighbors. In means poring over contracts, examining budgets, making decisions about high-priced capital projects.
It is an enormous undertaking for a seasoned veteran, let alone a novice. That’s why a little bit of education can go a very long way in helping volunteer board members find their way in the complicated world of co-op and condo management.
While there is no legal requirement regarding the education of co-op or condo board members, it is certainly not a bad idea, no matter how much experience the person has in the business or volunteer world.
“Many board members are professionals in their own fields, but not in building management or, often, in corporate operations,” says David Kuperberg, president of Cooper Square Realty, based in Manhattan. “It’s difficult sometimes and frustrating,” he says, that board members do not have a way of learning other than “through experience or the school of hard knocks.”