Kingswood HOA Feedback
Important feedback and an exciting future vision shared27th Jun 2022
As prelude to the Kingswood Golf Estate Annual General Meeting on 27 June, the KGE Homeowners Association trustees provide feedback on recent strategic planning sessions, an imminent change in the structure of the HOA, and action schedules that sprouted from these important talks.
An initial strategic planning meeting was facilitated by business improvement and operations excellence expert Cor Swart on 22 February – and that was just the start of extensive strategising undertaken by trustees and CEO over the past four months, culminating in a second strategic session on 14 April.
Protracted working sessions with Cor did much to inform the direction taken by KGE decision-makers in the context of an ever-burgeoning estate, always with the wellbeing of each and every Kingswood resident in mind.
Goals of the meeting, areas covered, and a summary of key talking points are summarised below, and some of these points will be under discussion during the AGM. In short, the KGE vision is to be the Garden Route’s preferred, secure and family-friendly residential golf estate.
- 497 homes completed
- 244 stands open (142 in Phase 4)
- 39 homes under construction
- 28 developer stands left
- 3,000 entries and exits per day
- 14km perimeter fence
- four entrance points (excl. Phase 4)
Approximately 31% increase in property value over the past five years
Cash reserves of R6.3 million after purchase of golf course, gatehouse and KHOAP loan
Looking a decade ahead
Building on a solid foundation, in 2022 Kingswood can confidently work from a platform of a wholly accomplished Phase 1–3, while infrastructure of Phase 4 is also completed. By 2025, it is envisaged that all developer stands will be sold, with the HOA having taken over total responsibility. Other factors included in the five-year forecast are for homes in Kingwood Ridge to be well advanced, the community centre / clubhouse developed and gatehouse repurposed, and for lesser susceptibility to load shedding.
Furthermore, the plan is for implementations relating to the improvement of irrigation reserves, structures and security systems to be finalised. Once these goals have been attained within the five-year timeframe, 2032 will see a fully sustainable Kingswood, with all homes completed … all systems go!
SWOT’s the word
An integral part of strategic planning is SWOT: taking account of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. Several points under each of these four headings served to inform the way forward, with strengths including Kingswood’s ownership of the golf course and gatehouse property, its strong financial position, a well-established brand and infrastructure, as well as robust property resales and building activity.
Opportunities abound, such as the hiked demand for property resulting from a continued George-semigration trend, and an increase in economic activity due to developments around Kingswood, e.g. a new Mediclinic, The Village Ridge housing development, wellness and lifestyle centre (clay tennis courts), possible private school, and two future developments bordering Phase 4.
Weaknesses are endemic to any operation of Kingswood’s mammoth scale, and include everything from resourcing challenges, current staffing structure being insufficient, continuity in terms of trustees, and non-compliance with HOA rules.
Threats often revolve around matters over which decision-makers have no control, such as reliable electricity or water supplies, economic instability, and increased operating costs due to inflation, to name but a few. Nonetheless, these factors are taken into consideration, and preventative action plotted.
Success = critical
Critical Success Factors (CSFs) at Kingswood include security and the safety of residents; a golf course maintained and operated according to set standards; proper maintenance of infrastructure (roads, fence, etc.); competitive levies (cost of living and value for money); the establishment of a family-friendly environment; and consistent application of building controls.
When considering Kingswood’s position relative to those of its competitors, all factors above were arbitrated during the strategic planning sessions, and solutions thrashed out for those CSFs to ensure continued flourishing of the estate. In most cases, Kingswood is currently top of its class, if in some instances qualified by areas for improvement, e.g. additional leisure activities.
Five good plans guide a fine way forward
Key strategic themes confirmed during the course of the past four months are infrastructure, risk and security, new developments, technology/communication and community, water and electricity, financial management, and continuity.
Subsequently, five strategic initiative plans were drafted, each with particular focus area, objective, initiatives and considerations. The master document containing the Kingswood 10-year strategy and action plan was updated after the mid-April action planning session, and is intricately detailed in terms of timing, responsibilities and sundries relating to each of these categories.
Key to informing the way forward are the themes of structure and homeowner communication. In the first instance, implementation of the new structure must be aligned with budget provisions, and roles and responsibilities formalised accordingly.
Secondly, proactive communication with homeowners, to share context and the current state of affairs, is imperative. A priority here is to keep owners abreast of developments regarding community centre / clubhouse and gatehouse options, and all related cost implications.
A final word from the CEO
Willem Jacobs is extremely proud of what the trustees – guided by Cor Swart and informed by diverse external consultants – have achieved as the year reaches its halfway mark.
‘Our trustees were instrumental in selecting the most crucial themes as part of the facilitated strategic sessions, and drawing up action plans that are now being followed up,’ he says.
One of these themes revolves around Kingswood’s security service providers and systems, and is covered elsewhere in this newsletter. Another issue, that of continuity within management structures, is high on the agenda.
‘The fact is that Kingswood is bursting its seams, and therefore the structure of the HOA, and the way we go about resourcing, require amendments. When comparing notes with estates similar in size – that is 775 levy-paying members at Kingswood – they have double the number of staff,’ Willem explains.
‘Two new HOA posts will be filled to support our strategic direction, while ensuring that we have continuity and the stability to know exactly where we are going, and how we will get there, over the next 10 years.’