By Rafael Aquino

Published September 15, 2021  


Life for Board members, managers, and residents would be much easier if associations had the necessary funds to maintain the property and all its assets. Unfortunately, many associations have a weak cash position, and as the building ages, things get much more expensive. One of the most challenging parts of being on a volunteer Board is asking its residents for money.


What steps can a board take if they find themselves with an aging building and a tight cash position? The first step I would recommend is hiring an engineer or a reserve specialist; either organization can provide you with a report that determines the useful life and funds needed to repair your association. Once you have this report, the board can understand what the current and future financial needs will be for your association. A majority of associations will quickly realize that they don't have the necessary funds recommended in the report. If you fall in that category, it's time to plan what steps you will take to correct the issue. If you don't, things will become much more challenging to deal with as the years pass.


How can you get yourself out of that situation?


Option I: Special Assess for the reserve shortfall amount within the report and amend your budget to include the amount that should be reserved moving forward. If your shortfall is significant amount of money, you can spread out the payments as the board deems fit.


Option II: NOT RECOMMENDED! Do nothing and pass special assessments or obtain loans as needed.


Over the years, I've noticed that those fully funded associations are better maintained, and residents are happy. Those associations with challenges in their financials do find a way to resolve the challenges they may have. However, they must pick and choose their projects rather than having them planned. That is why at times, you'll find an association redecorating the lobby when they should be redoing the roof. If they had followed the reserve study from the offset, they would have had the funds to do it all.

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As the Co-Founder and CEO of Affinity Management Services, Rafael P. Aquino leads his team to redefine excellence. They serve community   associations   efficiently

and effectively with dedication and passion. Rafael’s energy and positive spirit is the foundation of Affinity Management Services’ company culture, which instills enthusiasm and excitement when providing expert advice to its board members and relieving the day-to-day burdens of running a community association.


Since 2007, Rafael has developed a work culture that values responsive and high-quality services. He has led his team by following a proactive vs reactive philosophy. The same approach Rafael instills in the day to day operations of each association. Today, Affinity Management Services maintains its success and benefits as a result of the foundation Rafael has built and continues to foster by providing educational seminars, continuing education classes for association managers and board members alike.

Rafael and his team help condominium and homeowners’ associations save money and improve their communities. His calm, personable, and service-oriented nature helps him to establish strong relationships with ease. Rafael is known as a sincere and honest leader who looks out for the best interests of his clients and communities, and he strongly advocates for their needs. His role requires coordination and communication, as such he takes logical and intelligent steps to approach challenges head-on.

As a graduate of Florida International University’s electrical engineering program and a licensed community association manager, Rafael’s education and skills equip him with unique insights to tackle complex problems through critical thinking. He understands how each component within a system works together in order to effectively arrive at solutions, techniques, and conclusions. Therefore, as he manages the multiple challenges of running a community association management company, he understands how each property is its own unique system and tailors’ specific services to assure that all their needs are met.

For more information about Rafael P. Aquino and Affinity Management Services please visit or call 1-800-977-6279

Doral Office: 8200 NW 41st ST

Suite 200

Doral, FL 33166

Broward Office: 150 S Pine Island RD Suite 300

Plantation, FL 33324

O: 800-977-6279 ● F: 305-325-4053

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