Industry News | Wk of April 29


Seven Ways to Urbanize the Suburbs
Over the past two decades, developers have mastered what is needed to entice urban dwellers to live in downtown apartment communities. But now, as downtown locales become increasingly congested, developers are aiming to give renters an urbanized experience in suburban locales. To make it work, they’ll have to develop near jobs and transportation, solve the car challenge, cooperate with municipal leaders, incorporate visual rhythm and, perhaps most importantly, implement retail to mimic city convenience.
Read Barbara Ballinger’s article in Multifamily Executive.

What Features Do Apartment Renters Value Most?
It’s a question that is often asked, but the answer seems to evolve from year to year and sometimes more frequently. With all the chatter about traditional amenities mattering less and less, Greystar’s recent survey about features renters most value indicated that swimming pools remain a top preference, in cold and warm climates. In addition, multi-use common-area space is becoming more sought after, as well as anything pet-related. Within apartment homes, soundproofing is becoming increasingly important to residents. Read Bendix Anderson’s article in National Real Estate Investor.

Stay Innovate in Multifamily
Many apartment operators often profess the need to be innovative, yet they look to major REITs or react to their competitors when doing so. One way to stay ahead of the curve is to look outside the apartment industry for innovative ideas and adapt them in a multifamily-specific way. While attending industry conferences is always recommended, multifamily professionals can expand their capacity for innovation by attending out-of-industry conferences such as CES or Inbound. One of the best ways to excel within your field is to look outside it. Read Samantha Chalmers’ blog.


A Rent Control Comeback Is Breathing Down The Neck Of The Apartment Industry
While the current apartment industry remains in solid standing, new rent control measures threaten the outlook for long-term revenue growth. As apartment rentals have become increasingly unaffordable in several major markets, efforts like Oregon’s recently enacted law to cap rents at 7 percent (plus the local inflation rate) are starting to gain traction. Colorado, New York and Illinois are among the states currently pursuing some variety of rent control. Read Dees Stribling’s article in Bisnow.

Fannie Mae: One-Third of Americans Can’t Find Affordable Housing Near Work
A Fannie Mae report released this month revealed that most Americans are struggling to find affordable housing near their workplace and in areas with better schools, childcare and employment opportunities. One in three of those surveyed indicated difficulty finding affordable housing near their workplace and 58 percent reported that areas with better job opportunities are too expensive to live in. Forty-six percent would prefer to live in an area with better schools and childcare but can’t afford to do so. Read Holly Dutton’s article in Multi-Housing News.

USPS Squawks at Delivering Packages to Upper-Floors
at Apartment Communities

Some garden-style communities are having package difficulties. USPS carriers are requesting a single drop-off point and refusing to climb the stairs to deliver shipments, even on the second floor. Many garden-style communities consist of multiple buildings, and even when each has a separate set of mailboxes, carriers are still insisting on a sole drop-off point. In those situations, garden-style apartments (those ranging two to four stories) have to rethink their package process and weigh the option of removing the boxes if carriers will refuse to use them. Read Paul R. Bergeron III’s article in UNITS Magazine.

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