Villas of Cobblestone


How To Start a Neighborhood Association


1. Set a date for your first Meeting!
Make up a flyer stating concerns in the Neighborhood and
deliver a copy to each home in your subdivision. Set a time,
date and place for your first meeting and include that info
in the flyer. List your phone number so people can call
you with questions or to pledge support.
Keep a list (Name, Address, Phone) of every caller. Create
an initial list of interested parties. Call them a day before
the meeting to remind.

2. Prepare yourself for Naysayers
Realize ahead of time that you will undoubtedly receive calls
from people who do not want an association. Prepare yourself
for negative comments and try to maintain your resolve!
Inform people that you have no desire to “disrupt” their lives,
only to enhance property values and create a better place
to live!

3. First Meeting
The first meeting is critical in establishing positive support!
Speak of positive things, keep it upbeat. Discuss the possibilities
for improvement (landscaping, entrance signs, common area
improvements) Have attendees list their #1 gripe. Narrow these
down to a list of TOP TEN concerns and pledge to address these
concerns and find an agreeable solution to them all.

4. Set Date & Time for First “Clean-up” effort
- Set up a “Clean-Up” Celebration Day
- Enlist the help of CLEAN IT UP, GREEN IT UP (630-3420) They will
provide you with flyers to distribute, gloves to wear, trash bags
and vests!
- Seek donations of beverages from local retailers
- Ask residents to bring lawnmowers, mulch, flowers, etc.
- Set the clean up for early morning hours (before it’s too hot)
- Keep the clean-up time to a minimum (2 hours) You don’t
want to exhaust your volunteers!
- Make it fun!

5. Thank your volunteers
Following your successful clean-up effort, make up a flyer thanking
volunteers. List your accomplishments for those who were unable
to attend. Encourage them to try to be involved next time!

6. Meet your City Council Member
If you do not know your City Council Member, call the City’s
Information Number (630-1919) and ask who your Council
Member is. Contact them, tell them what you are doing,
ask for their support. Many times they will even be a guest
at one of your meetings!

7. Get Involved in CPAC
Find out about your district’s Citizen’s Planning Advisory
Committee (CPAC) by calling the Neighborhood’s Dept.
(630-7398) Try to attend these meetings and be a voice
for your Neighborhood!

8. Get Involved in ShAdCo
Call the Sheriff’s Office (630-2160) and ask about joining
the ShAdCo (Sheriff’s Advisory Council) in your area.

9. Code Enforcement
Many times, most of your problems (overgrown lawns, deserted
vehicles, homes in disrepair, recreational vehicles in driveways)
can be handled by a simple phone call to the City’s Code
Enforcement office. The housing safety code requires that all
residential and commercial structures be maintained at a certain
level. To report violations, call 630-4957.
Get to know your Code Enforcement Officer.

10. Solid Waste Disposal
Have problems with people leaving old tires by the road that
never get picked up? Old appliances that sit there for weeks?
Call for pick up 387-8999.

11. Study your Covenants & Restrictions
Prepare yourself for questions about Covenants & Restrictions
by studying them thoroughly. Make sure they are enforceable
and current.

12. Solicit Help From Community Leaders
You will no doubt run into questions to which you have
no answers. Ask for help from people you know who
are effectively running associations. Ask CPAC members
for guidance also. You will be surprised by the level of
assistance you will receive by simply asking!

13. Create Monthly Newsletter
Create and Distribute a Monthly Newsletter that recaps
special projects, highlights areas of interest, welcomes
new residents and recognizes neighbors who are doing
a good job!

14. Assign Block Captains (vitally important!)
After your first few weeks stomping the pavement and knocking
on doors, you will learn an important lesson. You can not do it
ALONE! You will wear yourself out! Block Captains are a great
way to lessen the burden. One Block Captain is responsible for
ten houses. They deliver all flyers, etc. to these ten houses.

15. Elect Officers
Select a Nominating Committee to call all members and ask for
nominations for the offices of President, Vice President,
Secretary & Treasurer. Take the top two nominees for each
office and vote by secret ballot at your meeting.

16. Select Committees & appoint Committee Chairpersons
Another way to take pressure off yourself is to appoint
Committees. You may want to have a Membership
Committee, a Landscape/Beautification Committee, A Welcome
Committee, and an Architectural Control Committee.

17. By-Laws and Articles of Incorporation
These are important facets to getting started. Samples attached.

18. Membership Dues
The association should vote on dues (amount/due date)

19. Ask for Volunteers
In the start-up stage, you may not have a lot of capital.
Ask for volunteers - can anyone make copies for you?
Can anyone donate supplies?

20. Discuss the Mayor’s Neighborhood Matching Grant
Start making plans to apply for next year’s grant...just
think of all the positive improvements you could make
in your neighborhood!

21. Plan Neighborhood Celebrations
All work and no play.....
Plan some activities that don’t involve business, just so you
can all get to know each other. (Fall Festival, Easter Egg Hunt,
Christmas Caroling, Ice cream Socials, Bar-B-Q)

Posted by psalmist on 09/30/2000
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