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C.I.A Services, Inc.
Systems. Structure. Stewards.
Professional Community Association Management Since 1984
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Archived Newsletters

Every month, we issue an electronic newsletter, eNews Monthly, to keep clients informed about Association items, spotlight clients, and answer frequently asked questions and let you know what is happening with the company.  Old issues of eNews Monthly are available on our Library page. 

September 2013
eNews Monthly
Area Happenings
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Are you ready for National Night Out?

The National Association of Town Watch began organizing and sponsoring National Night Out accross the US in 1984 to help bring awareness about police programs to the communities.  These events focus on programs such as drug prevention, neighborhood watch and other anti-crime efforts. 

In it’s beginning National Night Out was held in August, and most of the country still observes the August date.  In Texas, however, we have the option to observe it on the first Tuesday of October to avoid the heat.

Many of our communities celebrate National Night Out in some way.  We look forward to bringing you photos and stories of all the wonderful events in our communitites as we all work together to make them a better, safer place for everyone. To check out your community’s webpage to see what they have planned, click here.

For more information on National Association Town Watch, click here.

Volunteer Spotlight
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Cumberland’s Lisa Brown
by Sandra Castro

Lisa Brown moved to the Cumberland community in 2001 from a home in Oakley and a neighborhood that had no homeowners association.  Her and her husband focused their new home search in rural Montgomery County and ultimately chose to move to Cumberland.  They both attend meetings regularly and are happy to be a part of Cumberland Community Association with the ability to vote, influence and support the overall well being of the community. 

Lisa volunteers in many capacities.  She is on the Communications Committee as the editor of the community newsletter, she paints faces at community events, keeps the neighborhood beautiful by picking up trash, and has even trimmed community trees and shrubs.  Lisa is an active "crime-watcher" and reports something suspicious in the community. When pool season comes she is always the one to volunteer to help distribute wristbands.

As the management company we are so grateful and pleased that we get to work with Lisa, our spotlight volunteer for this month and a truely dedicated volunteer for her community.

 

Too Good to Be True?
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As a volunteer in your community you might occasionally receive marketing materials or phone calls from other management companies soliciting new business.  Our website provides your community members with a list of their board members; however, in doing so it also gives competitors that choose to use "cold call" methods easy access to the same information.  As a company we do not do “cold call” marketing but rather rely on referrals and our reputation for growth. 

Competition is good and our focus is on providing great value to our clients.  We work hard every day to provide excellent service at the right price so we don’t have to hike prices or degrade service levels.  Some management companies promise low management fees however, you will want to examine their contract for other charges and make sure they disclose their 3rd party fees (fees paid directly to the management company from owners, contractors and others).  Any fees we charge are shown in our contract.  We believe in transparency so you are fully aware of our compensation. 

Please contact us if you’d like to discuss any “too good to be true” offers.

Featured Department
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Meet the Support Staff Team Members
by Savannah Landrum and Brittany Tate

It takes a multitude of specialized positions to efficiently manage a community association. There are many necessary tasks required to fulfill all the needs of our communities. We’ve introduced you to many of our departments in the last few eNews issues. This month, we would like to introduce you to our staff support team. The staff support team each work together to handle a great range of responsibilities with all of our departments. We have several employees who are part of this team, each with their own designated assignments to ensure that our communities efficiently reach their goals and many are cross-trained to support each other and our communities where needed.

Brittany Tate is our Compliance and Publications Coordinator. She handles resale certificates and compliance inspections/certificates for all of our communities. In addition, she prepares publications such as postcards, newsletters and flyers. Kandis Romhill, whom you met in the introduction to the HIR department staff, is cross trained to processes resale certificates and compliance certificates. This ensures a consistent and timely response is always available to clients. Both have completed customer service training and also assist our community specialist when needed.

Savannah Brantley is our Facilities Coordinator, overseeing facility reservations for parties and other events for our communities, seminar preparation, and supplemental accounting at the North office. She also takes care of deed restriction inspection processing for all communities and office locations. Savannah also works to assist our community specialists at a moment’s notice.

Gloria Bell, Margie de la Cruz, Tracey Lehr, and Pat Jensen (not pictured) each handle incoming and outgoing mail, document scanning and virtual filing, and general office support at our Houston offices. In addition, Tracey Lehr distributes the pool passes at our North office location.

Priscilla Aleman is the receptionist at the Southwest office and is always ready with a smile. She handles that location’s supplemental accounting and is a wonderful asset to the general office support staff as well as assisting with incoming phone calls to support our community specialist team. She also assists in processing large volume mailings and clubhouse reservations for the Southwest office.

Charlotte Bulcken handles in depth account and ownership research for all communities. In addition, prepares required state and county filings for all communities, processes property closing information, and assists with corporate support.

Dan Barr is our Insurance Specialist that does everything from obtaining insurance quotes for our communities to aiding in the filing and follow up on any insurance claims or concerns. Mr. Barr assists with ownership searches and during the very hectic pool season, he processes and distributes the pool passes at our Southwest office location.

The staff support team is here to help where needed with all aspects of managing each community. They work with the other departments as a team to guarantee that all tasks are properly completed in a timely manner. We could not find more dedicated or enthusiastic folks to support us and our communities.

Seminar Series

We are pleased to again present seven seminars throughout the year - each at three locations for a total of 21 training sessions. Click here to read the seminar descriptions and see the schedule.

  • Board Member Orientation
  • Advanced Topics for Board Members
  • Meeting & Records - The Legal Requirements
  • Understanding Collections & Financial Reports
  • The Super Budgeting Process
  • Practical Deed Restriction Management
  • Essentials of Architectural Control

Each two-hour seminar begins at 6:00 pm and we provide dinner in case you come straight from work.  You’ll leave with a wealth of practical information and a notebook for future reference.

And if that is not enough, our seminars are free!  Make a point to attend these seminars.  You’re sure to have a fun evening of learning!

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The Super-Budgeting Process

"Super-Budgeting" is our term for preparing a comprehensive long term budget and business plan. This isn’t something you do on the back of an envelope an hour before the budget meeting. We’ll break the process down into understandable components and show you how assets and reserves fit into the picture. We’ll start with a simple question that very few people can answer correctly: "How much money should our Association have in the bank?" By the end of the seminar, you’ll know the correct answer for your Association. This is a critical seminar to take before you start looking at budgets.

09/18/13 - Wednesday

6 – 8 pm

Bandera

09/17/13 - Tuesday

6 – 8 pm

North

09/19/13 - Thursday

6 – 8 pm

Southwest

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Board Member Orientation

This seminar is a must for all new Board members and a great refresher for seasoned veterans.  It will help you get up to speed quickly by understanding your responsibilities and authorities.  We’ll review the documents and laws that govern the way you do business.  We’ll give you an overview of the governing documents, basis of authority, organizational roles, responsibilities & authorities, conduct of meetings, and we’ll cover insurance and taxes.

10/16/13 - Wednesday

6 – 8 pm

Bandera

10/21/13 - Monday

6 – 8 pm

North

10/24/13 - Thursday

6 – 8 pm

Southwest

Employee Corner
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Congratulations Pvt. S M Sullivan!

Join us in congratulating Pvt. S M Sullivan on his graduation from Marine Corp boot camp! 

Shawn joined C.I.A. Services, Inc. in May 2012 while a junior in high school participating in his school’s Career Op program.  We were immediately impressed with what a respectful, polite and capable young man he is.  He worked with us through his senior year, performing various functions for us and quickly became an integral part of our team.  After graduating from high school, Shawn enlisted in the Marine Corp.  Although we were saddened to see him go, we were very proud of his choice to serve our country and sent him away with good thoughts and a few tears.

Shawn attended boot camp in San Diego, CA and graduated on August 30, 2013.  He has told us that working for a structured organization such as C.I.A. Services prepared him for boot camp!  We certainly miss his sense of humor.

He will be heading to Camp Pendleton, CA on September 10, 2013 to begin his school of infantry (SOI) training.  We wish him all the luck and are confident of his future success.

You make us proud! Ooh-rah!

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Employee Anniversaries

It’s another milestone for President Ralph Troiano and Executive Vice President Tina Jameson who are celebrating 29 years since creating C.I.A. Services on September 29, 1984. Ralph and Tina are based in our Bandera Office.

 

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Welcome to the team!

We are very pleased to welcome Cherylyn Gatlin and Kimberly Ellis to our North Office as Community Specialists.

Welcome aboard ladies, we look forward to having you on our team! 

 

Community of the Month
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We are proud of every one of our communities so it is always hard to find just one to highlight. We start by having each of our Community Managers write a nomination for one of their communities. We then read them and take a vote. Here are our most recent selections:

  • September - Bay Pointe Community Association
    Southwest Office - Deniece Reyes, Community Manager
  • August - Eastpoint Community Association
    North Office - Brenda Ellington, Community Manager
  • July - Kings Lake Forest Homeowners Association
    North Office - Annette Escarenio, Community Manager
  • June - Woodforest North II Homeowners Association
    North Ofce Office - Sandy Castro, Community Manager

To see the full story on these communities and to see the past winners, visit the Community of the Month page on our web site.

Community Anniversaries
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Every month we appreciate the communities that are celebrating their anniversaries with us. Here are the clients that started with us in August and September.

  • Valley Lodge Property Owners Association— 20 years
  • Westfield Glen Property Owners Association— 13 years
  • Eldridge Park Village Community Association— 11 years
  • Woodforest North II Homeowners Association— 11 years
  • Clear Lake City Boulevard Association— 8 years
  • Telfair Community Council— 7 years
  • Fairway Place Homeowners Association— 6 years
  • Morningside Place Homeowners Association— 6 years
  • New Forest Homeowners Association— 6 years
  • Westfield Forest Homeowners Association— 6 years
  • New Forest West Townhomes Homeowners Association — 5 years
  • Cielo Rio Ranch Property Owners Association — 1 year
  • Lakeridge Homeowners Association — 1 year
  • Treasure Island Homeowners Association — 1 year

Our goal has always been to create a positive, long term relationship with all of our client communities. We are very proud to be managing all of these communities.

Read Past Issues of eNews Monthly

Every month, we issue an electronic newsletter, eNews Monthly, to keep clients informed about Association items, spotlight clients, answer frequently asked questions and let you know what is happening with the company. Old issues of eNews Monthly are available on our Library page.