Condo Renovations during COVID19

Even though Georgia has started to reopen for business, community associations are still taking precautions during the COVID-19 pandemic. This is especially true for condominiums where public indoor spaces are often unavoidable (e.g., common element lobbies, elevators, and mail rooms). For this reason, condominium boards and managers have been justifiably concerned about residents bringing in outside visitors. In fact, there have been many questions as to whether a resident should be allowed to bring his or her contractor into the building?

In early April, persons that were required to shelter-in-place (under Governor Kemp’s Executive Order dated April 2, 2020) were not supposed to receive visitors unless the visitor qualified under one of the exceptions listed in the Order. In the context of a visiting contractor, the most applicable exceptions were for: (1) visitors providing support for the person to conduct activities of daily living or instrumental activities of daily living; and (2) visitors providing necessary supplies and services, such as food and supplies and equipment needed to work from home, and products needed to maintain safety, sanitation, and essential maintenance of the home or residence. Although the Order above is no longer in effect, condominium boards and managers can still use the foregoing language as guidance for visiting contractors going forward.

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Pandemic Painting

Just like everyone else, you've been spending a lot of time at home or walking around your community. You start thinking about the exterior and interior of your homes more so than ever, and the changes you want to make. But is now the time? Is it safe to have a crew paint interiors with my family home?
Large and small projects have been requested by our members by our proven and trusted painting business partners. Exterior painting of condominiums, townhomes, clubhouses, decks and fences have all been top requests for large scale projects. Some smaller scale projects include mail kiosks, pool houses and interior touch ups.
Our painting companies have gone to great lengths to ensure the safety of clients and employees. Communication and punctuality is now more important than ever. Exterior projects haven't changed all too much since there is little to no contact. Interior projects have proven to be a little more tricky and it is best to reach out to your painting company to understand their policies and procedures during these times. Some projects are being delayed until June/July but as a whole painting during the pandemic is happening! 

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Roofing is still Essential

Your roof plays a critical role in helping to protect your home and businesses. Roofing falls within the construction category and considered an essential business, and therefore open for business! 

It is always cheaper and a lot less stressful to be proactive, rather than reactive when it comes to your roof. Communities should have roofs inspected regularly for preventative measures instead of waiting until there is a problem. Anytime you can be proactive you are extending the life of your existing roof. Delaying roof repairs or replacements can lead to severe damage like persistent leaks, water damage - seen or unseen or mold. Most roofing companies offer financing options if needed.

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How Property Managers are Dealing with COVID-19

Without a doubt, the most important thing right now is safety of our communities and members. Navigating through government orders, closings, CDC recommendations, etc. has been an unprecedented challenge, but our managers and management companies have stepped up to the plate!

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Community Responsibility for Operating & Opening Facilities

Communities are faced with many novel questions when creating operational procedures and cleaning policies during the COVID-19 pandemic.  What is the new normal for community association responsibility when operating and opening facilities during this crisis?

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Sanitizing & Disinfecting

As places and organizations are thinking they can open under strict guidelines, we are seeing the conversations shift to what should we do to protect our community association and its members? What are the high priorities and how often should we clean and sanitize them? What does this process even consist of?

Most people use the words 'clean, disinfect and sanitize' interchangeably, but they are in fact very different. Understanding the differences between the three will help devise a plan for your community and determine which services and products and effectively get your communities safe.

Clean: This is typically the first step. Cleaning consists of mixing a clear with water to remove dirt. There are many different cleaning products for different types of service. It is important to note that cleaning does not kill bacteria, viruses or fungi.

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Pressure washing cleans, disinfects & kills bacteria & Germs

Coronavirus has made a huge impact on all our lives rapidly and made all of us start thinking of how we can take all necessary precautions to keep our facilities clean and safe. Sanitizing the surface while cleaning is an absolute must and pressure washing can help!

Pressure washing facilities, sidewalks, driveways, decks, picnic areas, parking garages, etc is something that is recommended to do year round. Not only does it increase property values and restore beauty, it also keeps our communities safe by killing germs, viruses, bacteria, mold, algae and other types of grime. Right now it is even more essential to clean and sanitize high touch areas such as tennis courts, pool decks, outdoor furniture sidewalks and playground equipment. If you are just cleaning with pressurized water you are not killing germs or viruses that are living on the surface. Sodium hypochlorite, also known has bleach, is an active ingredient needed in your mixture to help kill viruses and germs on surfaces. 

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Covid-19 Updates

CAI-Georgia is continuing to monitor the outbreak of COVID-19 and its impact on community associations. We will continue to update our membership through our Website and email. As always, we encourage all of our members to continue to follow the guidance and updates from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention.

What CAI-Georgia Has Done
For the past couple of months, the way we all do business and live our lives has dramatically changed. CAI-Georgia has had to postpone our Zoo Atlanta Luncheon, Wild West Stampede & Casino Fundraising Event, a national education class and an in person education class. We are working hard with the Board of Directors, venues, vendors and committees to reschedule these events in the future. We are also reaching out to other Chapters to see how we can all better serve our communities and collaborate together.

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Will Pools open this summer?

Pool companies are an essential business and are working to help prepare your pools to open when the time comes. It is important to continue to treat your pools so they can pass health inspections and best maintenance practices. If you haven’t already, please let your communities know that the pools is NOT OPEN even though they may be seeing services and on warm days looks so inviting! It’s not a bad idea to put a chain lock on your gate if you haven’t done so already. It is a good idea to not set out pool furniture at this time to reinforce that pools are not open. 

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Collection Policies

The economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has caused community association leaders to reflect on their existing assessment collection policies.  In implementing circumstantial policies, it is important to recognize that an association cannot function without payment of assessments from its members. By following these fundamental guidelines, an association can address the needs of its members without compromising essential functions of the community:

  • Do not waive, reduce, or delay any portion of the annual assessment.  Maintaining the existing schedule of assessments removes any uncertainty about what is owed and when it is due.  There are many individuals who will pay the full amount owed on time.
  • Do not declare to the membership that late fees, interest, or collection measures will be suspended.  Doing so may have the unintended consequence of discouraging payment from those who would have otherwise paid. 
  • Do continue to negotiate settlement of delinquent accounts with members.  Agreements should be made on a case-by-case basis, identify a schedule for payment, and secure remedies for the association in the event of default.  If the terms provide for waiver of interest or late fees, this should only occur upon final payment.
  • Do continue to proceed with normal collection activities, including letters, liens, lawsuits, and garnishments.  Doing so can be effective in encouraging settlement or securing a better position for the association if settlement cannot be achieved.

Some members were delinquent in payment of assessments before the pandemic began and more will become delinquent before emergency measures have been lifted.  The decisions made now, will have a significant impact on the association’s financial wellbeing when the world returns to normal (and it will return to normal).  Consult with your community association attorney for more information.

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Spring Landscaping during coronavirus

As the coronavirus pandemic continues, landscaping companies in the state of Georgia have not had any restrictions on work efforts and are categorized as essential business. Many of our CAI-Georgia landscaping companies have put additional safety measures in place including social distancing, flexible work times, remote work for office employees, staggered start times, deep cleaning of common spaces including truck and equipment and many more to ensure safety for all.

Springtime is one of the best times of the year to be outside and Georgia is beautiful at this time of year! HOA Boards and Management companies have continued to be consistent with spring landscaping needs and interests. While some of the bigger projects and upgrades have been put on hold, there have certainly been a lot of requests coming in and a lot of that has to do with many of our homeowners working from home and out in their communities. Many of the seasonal projects such as irrigation repairs, seasonal color, mulch and sod replacement have been keeping our landscaping companies busy!

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General Liability & COVID-19

General Liability Insurance (aka GL or CGL) is often referred to as “third party” coverage.  A contract between you and your insurer to protect against certain claims brought by a person or entity outside of that relationship.  Your GL policy protects the insured from the risk that others bring suit or file certain claims against you seeking damages for which they allege you are legally liable.

The terms of the GL insuring document promise to pay for harm caused by an “occurrence”.  An occurrence is often defined as an accident, including the continuous or repeated exposure to substantially the same general harmful conditions.  Whether harm from the alleged failure to prevent exposure to COVID-19 is caused by an accident may depend on whether the insured party foresaw the claimant’s injury.

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