Performing a Do It Yourself Reserve Study sounds daunting and one might rightfully be hesitant to undertake this task. For the majority of HOAs or community associations, with planning and due diligence, performing a DIY Reserve Study is a reasonable undertaking.
There are several sources that one can find that define the general
standards for a reserve study. The best available sources that I
have been able to find for
information on how to perform a reserve study are published by the State of
California and the State of Hawaii. The
State of California's
Reserve Study Guidelines and the
State of Hawaii's Reserve Study Manual are the excellent sources to guide you
in performing your own DIY Reserve Study.
A graphical representation to conducting a reserve study is ...
Once you have resolved to perform a reserve study and have developed
the work plan, there are two major task that you will have to do.
The first is to conduct the physical analysis. If you are
undertaking a first time study, this is called a Level 1 Study and
should include a comprehensive of all physical assets. Follow-on
studies are called Level 2 or Level 3 Studies and generally only require
an inspection or review of previously identified physical components.
Level 2 / 3 Studies are easier to conduct.
The most important part of a reserve study is to have a reasonably accurate inventory of the physical assets.
Review the State of California and State of Hawaii
manuals (see above). They are among the best information sources available.
Go to the RFA Discussion Forum and review the discussions about reserve studies. Tools and documents to assist you in conducting a comprehensive physical analysis are available at no cost.
To perform a funding analysis for a reserve study
requires that you possess knowledge on capital planning. It is not
rocket science, but it does take some time and effort to develop a good
Consider a software application that performs this analysis for you. The best available application for this is the Reserve Funding Analyzer (RFA) ... by the way ... it is also the most affordable. The RFA is available here.