We’ve talked about ways to strengthen security within your HOA community, and one of the most effective ways to accomplish this is to establish a neighborhood watch program. In order for your neighborhood watch program to be successful, you need to establish a relationship with your local police department.
Our residential association management company in Florida recommends the following tips for building a strong relationship with local police:
- Find out who your community liaison is.
Most local police departments will have a dedicated person that serves as a community liaison. Take the time to identify who this person is and establish a relationship. A great way to do this is to invite the community liaison to your next neighborhood watch meeting. If crime-related issues are to develop within your HOA community, you’ll have a point of contact within the police department to call.
- Choose your complaints wisely.
Speeding is a concern in many HOA communities and is therefore a popular issue to discuss with the local police department. It’s easy to blame speeding on teenagers, but often it’s the homeowners themselves that are violating the speed limit. Make sure your homeowners are abiding by the same standards that they’re complaining about.
Also, encourage your neighbors to minimize the number of nuisance calls to the police. If the police are having to regularly come into the community for false alarms, it can impact how they will respond to future calls.
- View the local police as a partner.
Some HOAs make the mistake of assuming they know more than the police. The police are the experts, so don’t take action before hearing their solutions. Use a partnership approach when asking for help with your HOA community.
- Adopt a cop.
Strengthen your relationship with the local police department by “adopting” an officer. Invite the police officer to a community gathering (cookout, tailgate party, etc) to get to know him or her as a person, not just a police officer.
- Keep residents informed.
If you send out a regular newsletter, our association management company recommends including a section related to crime prevention. Keep your residents informed of any crime-related issues and what the local police are doing to resolve the issue. Residents will feel good knowing that the local police department is working hard to create a safer community.
- Support local police events.
An easy way to score big points with your local police department is to participate in events that they’re sponsoring. Donate towards the cause and have HOA community members volunteer to work a booth. At the very least, encourage members of your neighborhood to be present to support the cause.
Use these proven tactics to build a stronger relationship with your local police department and create a safer community for your residents.
Looking for more tactics to improve the safety within your HOA community? We provide homeowners’ association management support to Florida communities to help improve the lives of residents. Please contact us at Vesta Property Services to learn more about how we’ve served as a trusted partner to Florida HOA communities for more than 25 years.