Nov 192018
✉ Kathy Mitton, President, SMVE HOA


Welcome back to everyone who was gone for the summer! Those of us who remained in town enjoyed more rain than normal and it didn’t feel as hot this year. That might not be quite accurate but I feel better remembering it that way!


Real Estate

This year to date, 15 homes have sold with an additional 1 in escrow. Sales have been relatively steady and most homes have turned over quickly.

Why Volunteers Matter

It has been a struggle to get volunteers to join the Board or to take on committee work. This has resulted in the few volunteers we do have (Board and committee members) often feeling stressed and overloaded. Too few people are doing a lot of work and the situation is not a sustainable one.

Because too few people have offered to volunteer, the Board will investigate having a management company take on additional tasks (such as accounting and general management) in early 2019. This will increase our operating budget and could result in a dues increase but is a necessary next step to keep the time commitment for volunteers manageable.

Volunteers Needed

While a management company can take on some of our work, there are some tasks that can’t be handed off. Volunteers are still needed for committees: Roads, Architecture, Landscape, and Maintenance. For example, volunteers are in a position to monitor areas for problems and can better spend their time doing that than engaging in day-to-day management.

Our annual membership meeting and election of Directors will be in February.  If you are interested in joining the Board or volunteering on a committee, please contact the Nominating Committee before December 1st. We would love to hear from you!

THANK YOU to those who do volunteer!

I am grateful for all our homeowner volunteers and thank you for the work you do. You make a real difference to our HOA. All of the work to prepare the roads for paving was handled by volunteers. All of the social events are driven by volunteers. Most of the leaks were identified and reported by volunteers. Our weekly trash gets put out by a volunteer. Everyone one of you fills a critical role and you and your work are much appreciated!

“I just wish the Board would do____”

If you attend Board meetings you sometimes hear homeowners make requests. Some examples include a salt water pool, a pickle ball court, benches, a little library, and a community garden. Many of these ideas are good ones but each one requires significant time and effort to flesh out, cost out, identify pros and cons, get buy-in, and implement. And some proposals, such as permanently shutting down a pool or limiting rentals to a particular percent, require approval by 51% of homeowners and, consequently, require even more time and attention. So while the Board might endorse an idea, it depends on volunteers to turn the idea into reality. If there is something you feel passionate about and would like to work to make happen (with other volunteers), please come forward!

South Pool Security

The south pool has been plagued with late night visitors who vandalize the property. Various attempts to prevent this problem have proved fruitless. So far we’ve made changes to the locking mechanism of the gate, posted additional signage at areas of entry, added fake cameras, asked the Sheriff to drive by more frequently as their schedule permits. None of these have been effective. Switching out the pool gate locks to allow exit without a key was also a boon to unwanted visitors (one person scales a wall and is able to let others in).

This summer a committee of Board members (Bill Coan, Larry Spencer, Kathy Mitton) did an exhaustive investigation into additional security options. Many vendors were consulted and different options were considered (increased physical security, security patrols, cameras). Security patrol companies told us that the only thing that prevents regular off-hour intrusions is consistently interrupting the visitor – – and that is too costly for any length of time. A company that specializes in security fencing told the Board that its fencing would have the pool area resemble a prison and that, ultimately, any fence is penetrable.

After careful consideration the Board took the committee’s recommendation to install security cameras at the south pool. This will be done in the next few months. And know that cameras will be focused on the walls and not in the shower area.

Don’t Wait!

Finally, the Board always appreciates hearing comments and questions and you don’t have to wait for the annual meeting to ask questions or discuss an issue. The monthly Board meetings are open to all homeowners and are held at the clubhouse on the third Monday of the month at 3:30 PM September through May. And know that homeowner issues are addressed at the beginning of the meeting so you needn’t wait long before you can ask your question or discuss an issue.

I look forward to seeing you all around the neighborhood!