Keys to Keeping Aging Communities Feeling Vibrant, Fresh

The allure of new construction and modern amenities help propel home sales in developing communities. But what happens a decade or two down the road when the community enters a more mature chapter of its lifecycle? What steps can you take to ensure your community remains relevant and desirable?

To answer these questions, we recently invited community managers and Board Presidents to share their experience and ideas on the matter. Their tips and insights are summarized below.

  • Evaluate key amenities – including community centers and landscaping – on an ongoing basis, and invest money as necessary to ensure their aesthetic and functional integrity is maintained.
  • Consider updating or modernizing association policies on issues such as house paint colors and other design modifications. As time passes and trends change, be sure you’re accommodating the needs and desires of your homeowners.
  • Continue fostering a true sense of community in the neighborhood. Word-of-mouth is a major marketing tool, and your residents can be your best salespeople. By ensuring they remain active and engaged in events, programming and community operations, you ensure you have a knowledgeable and happy base for sharing positivity.
  • Use your residents as a resource. Involve them in community operations through committees, town hall meetings or community surveys designed to gather input and better understand their interests and ideas.
  • Bring in an outside perspective. Partner with local entities that have a vested interest in the community – schools, public services, local businesses, etc. – and use these resources to gauge perceptions of your community outside the neighborhood.
  • Be open to change. As demographics of the community adjust, you need to adapt and be prepared to address their requests, whether that’s a change in meeting times or the addition of a new amenity, such as a pickleball court.
  • Prepare a communications strategy. When deciding on improvements, ensure your community communications are sharing the positive news and benefits with residents. This process continues as the project begins and, especially, when it’s completed. Ensure residents are fully informed at each stage of the process.
  • Focus on the intangibles. Often, a community can compete on elements beyond amenities, such as proximity to schools and shopping and level of assessments. Find ways to play to these strengths, such as partnering with parent-teacher organizations for events and programs and demonstrating the value of the homeowners’ assessments.

Through partnerships with CCMC, communities benefit from the open sharing of information, best practices and resources, empowering Boards and management team of each community to succeed. With age comes experience, and with more than 40 years serving community associations across the country, CCMC is well-equipped and prepared to help communities throughout the complete community lifecycle.