HOA irrigation: Don’t tinker with your timer.

HOA irrigation can be a polarizing topic, so much so that it may be time to reset your thinking about it. So let’s take a step back. It’s only natural that when your lawn begins to brown or your plants begin to wilt, you’re likely to blame lack of watering — either by Mother Nature, an irrigation problem or local water restrictions. But in your mind, no one seems to be listening or doing anything about it – not your community association, your property management company or your landscape maintenance provider (even though they’re adhering to your community’s contracted watering schedule). You’re so fed up that you decide to take things in your own hands. You go out and manually reset your irrigation timer to green up that landscape of yours.

Setting off a chain reaction.

By doing so, you’ve just set off a chain reaction, even if you’re just one resident in a 500-home community. Manually resetting your irrigation timer can disrupt scheduling, contribute to low water pressure, increase unnecessary landscape crew time and, in some cases, violate community watering restrictions. Also, tinkering with your timer and trying to turn your system on manually at the valve can sometimes result in an emergency call that would be charged directly to you or your HOA.

What happens when you tinker (true stories):

  • A large community receives a regulated amount of water each day, at which point the system automatically shuts off.  A few homeowners adjust their irrigation timers so their water stays on longer. The system shuts off early, depriving other residents of water.
  • A community’s lakes are low because of drought conditions. County watering restrictions have been put in place. Several homeowners decide to turn on their irrigation anyway, overstressing the community’s water pump and resulting in a costly service call.
  • A property manager and landscape committee chairman meet to discuss residents who “are cheating” by resetting their irrigation timers in order to get more water. The frustration is so high that putting locks on their boxes is considered.
  • A landscape-maintenance provider is asked to visit a homeowner and explain why she needs to stop resetting her irrigation timer, even though all community residents have been informed by their property manager and/or HOA not to do so.
  • An entire 32-home community swears its property management company never explained they had a water source issue, resulting in many residents adjusting their irrigation timers as needed while complaining to landscape crew workers.

No one wants to be the water police.

No one wants to be the water police, especially the hardworking landscape company who just wants to perform its contracted services and not be pulled off schedule to address avoidable issues. Which means that unfortunately, property managers and/or HOA boards all too often find themselves being the “enforcers” — the ones who have to step in, and quite honestly, should step in. The solution is communication, plain and simple. When homeowners, boards, property managers and landscape partners communicate and understand the ground rules for their grounds maintenance, things flow much more smoothly.

HOA irrigation systems

Landscape companies want water as much as you do but…

Trust us. No one more than ArtisTree (or any landscape company) wants to have water. It helps our maintained HOA properties throughout Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte counties grow and thrive. When that happens, property values increase. Residents are happy. But when established guidelines or regulations are circumvented, it can cause headaches for everyone. If you want something you can really set your clock to, set it to the fact that irrigation will never be a substitute for rain. It simply augments it. Further augmenting the amount of water that’s been approved to be augmented only increases one thing: frustration. Think about that the next time you tinker with your timer.

ArtisTree HOA landscape maintenance

To get your landscape renovation started now, browse ArtisTree’s portfolio and then call Jenni Lassen at 941.488.8897, ext. 312, to meet with one of our award-winning designers. We proudly serve Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte counties.

ArtisTree also provides complete landscape maintenance services for HOA communities throughout Southwest Florida. Contact Michael Casper at 941.488.8897, ext. 321, for your custom proposal.  

Category , ,

Tagged with: , , , , , ,