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Minnesota Community Living 2013-03-04 From the President
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From the President

By Traci Lehman, CAI-MN President

Traci LehmanAs I write this column, cities all across Minnesota are declaring snow emergencies. Schools are making childhood dreams come true by declaring "snow days,” which are as beloved by children as they are reviled by parents.

So what does all this snow mean? Well, spring is right around the corner, of course!

Spring is a time of rebirth, renewal and — in our industry — inspections. Typically this involves taking a closer look at roofs, siding, landscaping and other outdoor features to see what needs to be replaced, removed or renovated.

This spring, I think we have an opportunity to encourage homeowners in the communities we manage to inspect their interactions within their communities, and get a fresh start on being good neighbors.

Here are just a few suggestions — based on regrettable real-life examples — of little changes that can make a big difference in building community:


  • Don’t spread rumors about your neighbors. Instead, spread good cheer.
  • Don’t leave dog poop on someone’s front step to show displeasure. Instead, leave cookies and a note with an offer to talk through the issue at hand.
  • Don’t park for extended periods in guest spots. Instead, park in your designated spots while you work with your association to develop guidelines that reflect the traffic management realities in your community.
  • Don’t expose your neighbors’ ears to your favorite party tunes, barking dog or tricked-out car. Instead, expose them to a respectful, peaceful community.

Over time, little day-to-day infractions can tear down communities. As management professionals, we’re here to help build them up. Spring seems like the perfect time to dig in and get started.

PS: Thanks to everyone who participated in the annual CAI-MN Trade Show last month. We had a new record turnout, with 86 exhibitors and 148 attendees. Special thanks to the planning committee who put so much time and effort into this fantastic event!

Published by Community Associations Institute — Minnesota Chapter, copyright 2013. All articles and paid advertising represent the opinions of authors and advertisers and not necessarily the opinion of either Minnesota Community Living or CAI–Minnesota Chapter. The information contained within should not be construed as a recommendation for any course of action regarding financial, legal, accounting, or other professional services by the CAI–Minnesota Chapter, or by Minnesota Community Living, or its authors. Articles, letters to the editor, and advertising may be sent to Chapter Staff Editor Joe Flannigan at, or at CAI–Minnesota Chapter, 1000 Westgate Dr., Suite 252, St. Paul, MN 55114.

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