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'In the Common Interest' demonstrates how to improve community associations

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Long time readers of this column know and understand that the entire purpose of every sentence written here is to try and inform, entertain, and educate people about the many benefits and pitfalls of association living. Throughout it's history, the West Palm Beach HOA Examiner has striven to reach out to fans and foes of the world of HOAs, and provide a fair and balanced approach to covering the many issues that effect those who live in that world.

For the President and CEO of Associa, John Carona, those same goals apply, though in a slightly different way. Recently, Mr. Carona published his first book entitled In the Common Interest: Embracing the New American Community. The book provides an overview of the history of community associations, the challenges of governing them, and ways residents can work together to make communities stronger.

“I wanted to convey to our clients and our critics the positive aspects and values that make America’s community associations great,” Carona said.

In the Common Interest follows the phenomenal growth of community associations and explains how communities benefit not only residents, but the country at large. The book takes an in-depth look at the challenges such communities generate, and the solutions that pave the way for success for all concerned. Carona also looks at the pros and cons of neighborhood governance and provides ideas for how boards, managers, and residents can make them better.

According to the author, the goal of the book is to provide a vision to ensure the ongoing success of community associations and provide a positive vision in an area too often plagued by unfairly negative news coverage.

“Community associations reflect a fundamental American value of self-governance. I wanted to put in my two cents in protecting these values for our clients, for our industry and for our employees.”

In the Common Interest is available on and

The book is unique in that it examines community associations from three district perspectives. First, it provides an overview of the history of community associations. This section focuses on how community associations work, why people move into community associations and why such communities will continue to thrive. Second, the book sets out a vision to improve community associations by examining the need for education, for improving performance, and for helping communities adapt to changing cultural and regulatory demands. Lastly, the book looks beyond our national borders to show how community associations are taking shape around the world and providing adaptive housing for new homebuyers and for an aging population.

“The best part about what Associa does is that we work to empower people to govern themselves,” said Carona. “It remains our biggest asset, and our most formidable challenge.”

The West Palm Beach HOA Examiner hopes to soon have the opportunity to read and review this new publication, and try to learn a little more about where exactly Mr. Carona is coming from, and how he hopes to improve the lives of everyone in our new communal world.

Be sure to subscribe to this column, and stay abreast of issues involving you, the homeowners of Palm Beach County. If you've had any issues with your HOA that you'd like me to try and delve into, and possibly write about later, please let me know. Also, if you'd like to join the discussion on Twitter, you can find me at!/faborplumbs. While you’re at it, please read my articles about local getaways,motorsports, elections, and restaurants.



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