Community Associations Institute

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Logo of the Community Associations Institute.

The Community Associations Institute (CAI) is an influential trade association and special interest group headquartered in Falls Church, Virginia with about 60 chapters in the United States[1] that provides "education and resources to the volunteer homeowners who govern community associations",[2] and petitions for legislative and regulatory beneficence for its members.[3]

CAI is responsible for the Community Association Managers International Certification Board (CAMICB) program that was established in 1995 and has played a vital role in manager licensing laws in states around the country. Notably, Illinois developed a licensing law which was enacted in 2009.[citation needed]


Since CAI was founded in 1973, the people that build and service common interest developments (CIDs) have been a significant force in interest group politics in many states. According to Evan McKenzie they are dominated by lawyers and property managers that have shaped legislative and judicial policy making to prevent meaningful regulation of CID activity,[4] and keep the discourse on such matters largely private.[5]

In the absence of meaningful legislative regulation or oversight, the idea of residential private government took the shape advocated originally by developers through the Urban Land Institute and the Federal Housing Administration, and later through the CAI.[6] "One result," Professor McKenzie argues, "is the institutionalization of a heavy–handed managerial focus in CID governance."[7]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ McKenzie, Evan. Privatopia: Homeowner Associations and the Rise of Residential Private Governments. Yale University Press. p. 119. ISBN 0-300-06638-4. 
  4. ^ McKenzie, Privatopia, 27.
  5. ^ Privatopia, 26.
  6. ^ Privatopia, 121.
  7. ^ Privatopia, 27.

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