QUESTION: I live in a huge association and we spend tens of thousands of dollars annually mailing required documents to members. We can distribute them electronically but only a few have signed up. I suggested a one-time credit of $10 for each owner who agrees to electronic delivery. Our manager said it was illegal, as some homeowners would pay a reduced assessment for one month making it inequitable.
ANSWER: I disagree with your manager's legal opinion. Offering an incentive that benefits your association is both reasonable and legal. Owners are still billed the same assessment but some receive a one-time $10 credit. The credit is a simple accounting entry you can make without fear of going to jail.
Other Incentives. Offering an incentive saves your association a great deal of money (and a few trees) as people switch to electronic delivery. I think another nifty incentive is to require anyone who does not switch to electronic delivery to serve on the board until they make the switch.
ASSISTANCE: Associations needing legal assistance can contact us. To stay current with issues affecting community associations, subscribe to the Davis-Stirling Newsletter.