Industrial Markets Feb18

Industrial Markets

Boosted by healthy economic fundamentals, the U.S. industrial real estate market maintained its historic growth throughout the first half of the year, according to the most recent Yardi Matrix industrial report. The sector continues to benefit from increases in online consumer spending. Traditional core industrial markets such as Chicago, New Jersey, Dallas-Fort Worth and the Inland Empire are still leading growth, but new areas of interest are emerging. Demand is stronger than ever, with more than 128 million square feet of space absorbed nationally in the first half of 2018. Yardi client Winstanley Enterprises is one of the largest owners and operators of warehouse and distribution space on the East Coast, according to a National Real Estate Investor survey. Founder & Principal Adam Winstanley has roughly three decades of experience in real estate acquisition, development, finance, construction, leasing, asset management and disposition. Winstanley shares insights into the East Coast’s industrial markets and touches on technology’s impact on the sector. He also talks about what causes distress among investors and reveals his plans for the next years. Which are the hottest industrial markets on the East Coast? Winstanley: The hottest industrial markets on the East Coast remain Exit 8A in New Jersey, Lehigh Valley in Pennsylvania and the current newcomer Connecticut—between Hartford and Springfield, Mass., on Interstate 91. What do you take into account when deciding your next investment location? Winstanley: We look for sites that have low site development costs, with quick access back to major interstates on primary distribution routes. This interview originally appeared in Commercial Property Executive, a Yardi publication. Read the rest of the conversation with Winstanley...

Leading by Example

Meet Medha Deshpande, a director of CSD in Yardi’s Pune office. Her team of 450 employees assists Yardi Energy, P2P, Matrix, Utility Billing, Utility Expense Management, and Invoice Processing clients. Deshpande’s department covers a lot of ground. She manages the broad range of responsibilities by focusing on strategic team building rather than tasks. “My role is to mainly ensure that I have the right people at the right place doing the right job,” smiles Deshpande. As her teams develop, maintaining clear, unified objectives keeps the department operating coherently. “I like our company’s vision, growth, culture, values, and philanthropy. It is very important for all of us to maintain this culture and inculcate the same value system within our new employees as we continue to grow at a good speed,” said Deshpande. She is also mindful to maintain her personal growth. During her 14-year career with the company, Deshpande has encountered and overcome numerous challenges. Each posed an opportunity for her to hone her skills and emerge as a stronger leader. Deshpande reflects, “I have learnt and can say I am still learning to have patience. I tell myself that things may not move always the way you want and at the speed you may be expecting.” She continues, “Always be optimistic, demanding, and have perseverance for sustainable growth.” Pursuing Excellence in the Community  When she isn’t working at Yardi, Deshpande and her husband operate a weekend school for about 50 disadvantaged youth in grades three through 10. The school allows her to help kids pursue excellence. “We run the school at our farmhouse which is about 15 miles from Pune. We teach the children mathematics, English and value education,” says Deshpande. “This school runs throughout the year with no vacation. Children enjoy the school since our focus is not just education but also personal development through some activities which kids love. There is a library arranged for them with some very good books and educational toys.” The support of Yardi teammates and loved ones has helped the weekend school flourish. “Many friends and colleagues not only from India but from the United States donated books, school stationary, toys and other resources,” she explains. “Our family members and friends also support us on some weekends as visiting teachers. One of our Yardi employees, Chandrakant Manekar, has been a dedicated teacher for about one year, which has been a big help.” “We have been fortunate as we get immense satisfaction and pleasure from spending time with these kids. It has been like a booster to our life!” says Deshpande. To learn more about Yardi’s outstanding team members, visit the People page. Director Medha Deshpande Deshpande with school children Guest teachers with school children Local school children Roll call at school Study session with teachers Students of the weekend school Students welcome guests to school...

Reporting Made Easy Feb13

Reporting Made Easy

As an owner, you wear many hats and have many strengths. If interpreting reports is not among your talents, you’re not alone. Many leaders aren’t getting the most out of team updates because they are not comfortable with the terms used on the reports. A brief refresher may do the trick! Below is a quick cheat sheet of nine common ratios that you will encounter and how to interpret them. Capitalization Rate (Cap Rate) When you are just getting started with a property, cap rate comes in handy. The cap rate tells you the actual value of an investment beyond its appraisal value. To find the cap rate: Cap rate = sales price of a comparable income property ÷ net operating income of comparable income property Net Operating Income (NOI) NOI is also used to determine the value of a property. It uses data from the previous year to account for the loss of rental revenue due to vacancies, maintenance and other factors. To find the NOI: Net operating income = gross operating income – (operating expenses ÷ gross income) Market Value Your cap rate and net operating income can then help you to understand your market value. This will change over time based on several factors. To find market value: Market value = net operating income ÷ capitalization rate Vacancy Rate This is undoubtedly a figure that you will refer to often. The vacancy rate is the number of unoccupied units compared to the number of units available for rent. A lower number is better than a higher number. To find the vacancy rate: Vacancy rate = number of unoccupied units ÷ total number of units Occupancy Rate Another common ratio used to understand the quantity of available units is occupancy rate. To find the occupancy rate: Occupancy Rate...

Client Spotlight Feb12

Client Spotlight

Seattle-based Avenue5 Residential, a Yardi client, has recently had several reasons to celebrate. The company was named the second fastest growing firm in the state of Washington and it currently occupies the 30th spot in NMHC’s top 50 largest apartment managers—up 16 spots from last year’s position. The secret to its success seems to be its flexibility and willingness to adapt to a fast-changing environment. CEO Walt Smith shares the strategy that is designed to help the company thrive even more. What are the main trends in apartment operations today? Smith: One key multifamily industry trend is related to pricing. We used to be able to track pricing on a less-frequent basis. Because today’s market is increasingly dynamic, however, there is greater pressure to monitor indicators for rental rates every single day and to price apartments in real time according to the data. Another critical trend is monitoring customer sentiment on an ongoing basis and empowering teams to make changes based on customer feedback. Providing exemplary customer service has always been essential, but today it holds particular importance due to the popularity of online ratings and review sites. Even a relatively small number of negative online comments can significantly impact a property’s bottom-line performance, so being able to proactively assess challenges at the property level and address those challenges quickly can give a property a competitive edge. A third important trend is harnessing the power of the numerous metrics that are currently available to multifamily management firms. Managers who can select a data platform that aligns with their needs and the needs of their clients, who can aggregate massive amounts of data into easily consumable insights and translate those insights into actions that will improve performance will be in the best position to meet...

Foodie Culture Feb11

Foodie Culture

Food continues to be a hot topic in senior living. Television personalities like Anthony Bourdain and Andrew Zimmern ignited the modern “foodie” culture. Their meals dripped with excitement and worldliness. Under such influences, aging Boomers have high expectations for their dining options. Senior living experts will have to keep up with costs and trends to appease them. Rising Costs Food costs are at an historic high. Prices have risen an average 2.6 percent each year over the last 20 years. Long term, prices will continue to rise. A survey  by senior living association Argentum reveals that 51 percent of industry decision-makers agree that their average food costs increased in the past year. Organizations are seeking alternative methods improve cost efficiencies. Local Sourcing: Cost-Saving, Community Friendly Local food sources provided one way for 29 percent of organizations to cut costs. By decreasing storage and transportation expenses, locally-sourced foods can cost less. More than 75 percent of respondents currently offer locally-sourced produce. Nearly 55 percent offer locally sourced animal proteins. Local sourcing also appeals to the current trend in foodie culture that cherishes farm-to-table preparation. This more sustainable option promotes in-season, small batch fare. The quality of such local foods is more easily controlled and verified. Additionally, local sourcing reflects a growing concern for local economies. Nearly 25 percent of respondents that serve local produce do so to support other neighboring businesses. For 15 percent of senior living communities, locally-sourced goods are a point of differentiation against competitors. Stop Food Waste to Slash Costs Worldwide, over one-third of food  is wasted. Americans alone toss up to 40 percent of their food purchases into the trash. Decreasing food waste ensures that food fills bellies instead of trash cans. Nearly 40 percent of respondents are using food waste tracking to...

Client Spotlight Feb08

Client Spotlight

As a custom office space provider, Yardi client Knotel has more than 100 locations in New York, San Francisco, London, Berlin and Sao Paulo in Brazil. In December, Knotel expanded its New York City presence with four new office leases totaling 78,780 square feet. The largest lease inked was a 51,000-square-foot space at Rosen family’s 27 W. 23rd St., which encompasses the entire second and third floors of the building. Knotel was represented by Elie Reiss of Skylight Leasing and the landlord was represented by Danny Breiman of Olmstead. Eugene Lee, Knotel’s global head of real estate and business development, oversees sourcing and negotiation of management partnerships, leases and purchases, as well as global market expansion, corporate development and enterprise business development. Prior to working for Knotel, Lee served as a senior advisor for economic development in Mayor Bloomberg’s administration, was chief of staff & senior advisor for the U.S. Department of Commerce in D.C., and worked at Knewton, an adaptive learning tech provider. What led you to Knotel? Lee: The opportunity to help build a company and product that solved a huge problem. When I worked at City Hall during the Bloomberg administration, we constantly heard from emerging companies and entrepreneurs about the pain and expense of finding office space. While we couldn’t easily address the issue then from a policy perspective, Knotel is the solution that will change how all companies consume office space. This interview originally appeared in Commercial Property Executive, a Yardi publication. Read the rest of the conversation with CPE’s Keith Loria...

Member Personas

One of the most critical aspects to properly marketing your coworking space is building member personas. You could be doing tons of hard work and spending time and dollars on marketing, but if you’re not aiming at the right target, it could be all for nothing. Let’s take a look at how and why to build member personas. What are member personas? Imagine creating your ideal member, in detail. Consider what characteristics, habits, demographics, and many other factors formulate the member you would most associate with your space. For example, you could say ‘Tom’ is an entrepreneur, based in Miami, age 34, losing creative spark due to isolation, and needs to work a flexible schedule due to other demands. Tom is your target customer. This guide is a good way to check off the questions you need answered, so that you’re not just marketing to “everyone.” But why can’t you just target a wide scope and range of potential members? You’re bound to hit on some of them, yes, but for the most part this isn’t a prudent strategy. You’re going to be wasting your efforts targeting lots of personas that simply don’t match with what your space is all about. If your scope is too wide, your space will be too formal for some, too informal for others. It may be too large or too small. It may be out of driving distance. It may be out of budget. An important note from coworking marketing expert Cat Johnson is that your potential member can get a desk and Wi-Fi in many places. Make sure you are targeting someone who needs more than that, be it intangible features like community and collaboration, or tangible benefits like conference rooms and after hours access. Learn how to create...

CAM Reconciliations Feb06

CAM Reconciliations

In many commercial leases, tenants are responsible for rent and a share of the property expenses. Common area maintenance (CAM) fees help cover the direct expenses of maintaining areas shared by all tenants. If you’re a commercial landlord or property manager, you might charge monthly fixed CAM fees based on estimated expenses, then run a reconciliation against actual expenses at the end of the year. But because CAM expenses vary depending on the actual charges accrued, manually reconciling estimated CAM charges with actual charges can be time consuming. Larger operators have long been able to automate CAMs with Yardi Voyager Commercial. Commercial property managers with smaller portfolios can now do the same thing using Yardi Breeze. It’s one easy way to save yourself a significant chunk of time. What do CAMs include? CAMs can include the cost of maintaining both internal and external spaces. Internal common areas may include elevators, public restrooms, hallways, lobbies and more. Outdoor common areas often include parking lots, landscaped spaces and signage. Clearly stating what your CAM fees cover upfront can help you avoid leasing disputes later. CAM fees are usually allocated to tenants on a pro rata basis, meaning the more square footage a tenant rents, the greater their percentage of CAM expenses. How do CAM charges work? Tenants pay a monthly estimated charge for the property expenses. The actual expenses are tracked in recoverable expense accounts throughout the year. Then, at the end of the year, a reconciliation is done. The tenant’s share of the actual expenses is calculated. The tenant’s share is compared to the estimated charges the tenant has paid. If the expenses are greater, an additional charge is created for the tenant. If the estimates are greater, the tenant gets a credit. Saving time...

7 Property Management Pitfalls

Property management is tough. Every day can feel like shooting at a moving target, that is invisible, and may decide to shoot back at you at any movement.  Proper preparation can take the sting out of your daily grind and propel your business to success! Below are seven common property management pitfalls with suggestions on how to fix them. High Turnover Whether it’s residents or staff, high turnover is a bad sign. Jen Piccotti of multifamily housing consultant group Manag Inc., defined high resident turnover as anything over the national annual average of about 50 percent. High staff turnover exceeds the national average of 32 percent per year. When your numbers hover near the national averages or higher, it’s time to regroup. Renters are a naturally transient demographic. Sky-high turnover primarily reflects issues within management. A recent survey by Unicom reveals that 27 percent of respondents said hiring and maintaining quality staff was the single biggest challenge. Of that pool, 49 percent said hiring and maintaining staff is “challenging” or “very challenging.” When staff turnover is high, examine daily operations. How can the environment be more conducive to growth and fulfillment? What can make the job more efficient, thus easier? Here is a hint: fix staff turnover first. When happy, empowered employees are in place, they can best address the needs of residents. When residents are cared for, high resident turnover will resolve itself. Poor Property Management Systems Nearly 10 percent of respondents cite time management as one of their most pressing concerns. Among them, 30 percent say that time management is either “challenging” or “very challenging.” A powerful property management system can reduce staff turnover by improving daily work conditions. Streamlining the leads-to-leases process takes a load off overwhelmed staff. Streamlining also reduces repetitive tasks like data entry and follow-up calls, resulting in better time management. The tide builds in your favor! When employees enjoy improved work conditions and better time allocation, you can lower operating costs via less staff turnover, less resident turnover, and more efficient management practices. They all come together with the right property management software. Mediocre Maintenance Staying on top of maintenance falls in line with lowering operating costs. Without regular maintenance, your property descends into expensive disrepair and your resident dissatisfaction rises. When you don’t care for your property, neither will your residents. Property damages escalate from there.  About 14 percent of the respondents claim property damage and unexpected maintenance were above all the other challenges! Set the standard for your property and your residents. Implement a regular maintenance schedule and stick to it. Then help residents help you! With online maintenance requests, you can stay on top of unit maintenance before small problems grow larger. Rejecting Responsiveness Like it or not, residents now expect 24/7 responsiveness. If you are slow to respond to prospect and resident queries, you’re sabotaging your success. First, get a respected customer relationship management system (CRM). That way, you can answer calls even when your office is closed. Secondly, enable all digital communications with an auto-response message. Let people know when they can expect a response from you. Not Reaching for Referrals Properties need a steady flow of leads and referrals to maintain high occupancy. If your property isn’t receiving consistent referrals, it may mean that residents are dissatisfied. With unhappy residents, poor reviews and limited referrals are bound to follow. First, learn what your renters want. Address those areas of concern. Once you are on the track to improved resident satisfaction, initiate a referral program that incentivizes word of mouth marketing. Nuisance Non-compliance Nothing ruins a business faster than lawsuits or expensive non-compliance penalties. Rules constantly change. Stay on top of changes with property management software that updates compliance for you. Also attend conferences that educate managers on developments in federal, state, and local laws. Dangerous Discounting When properties around you start to slash their rates, it’s easy...

Client Spotlight Feb04

Client Spotlight

As it celebrates its 125th anniversary, Chicago-based Draper and Kramer Inc., a Yardi client, has promoted Todd Bancroft to president & CEO. Bancroft is taking the helm at the commercial real estate investment, financing and residential management company from Forrest Bailey, who decided to step down from his long-term positions. Bancroft had served as the firm’s COO & general counsel since 2014 and has a deep background in law and real estate. Previously, he worked at Bancroft, Richman & Goldberg, a Chicago law firm he founded in 2010, and spent 13 years with Equity Marketing Services, a professional sales and marketing firm for condo development projects and condo conversions. It was there that he first formed a relationship with Draper and Kramer, partnering with them for a condo conversion way back in 1997. In his new positions, Bancroft will be tasked with continuing Draper and Kramer’s legacy while capitalizing on new opportunities for investment and net operating income growth. In November, Draper and Kramer acquired North 680, a luxury community in Schaumburg, Ill., as part of a 1031 exchange following the company’s sale of Fieldpointe of St. Louis, a 318-unit property in Maryland Heights, Mo. In October, Draper and Kramer teamed with Edge Principal Advisors on the $131 million sale of Wheaton Center, a 758-unit community in Chicago’s suburbs, to FPA Multifamily. What led you to working for Draper and Kramer? Bancroft: I worked at Equity Marketing for 13 years and then the downturn was really its deathblow. There were no condominium sales, no new condominium projects, so its entire business model all but went away. So, at the beginning of 2009, I decided to open a small law firm and was targeting general real estate work as well as condo associations. A year later,...

Senior Finances Feb01

Senior Finances

The recently released Argentum 2019 Forecast Report takes a quick peek at past senior economic activity as well as current trends and future projections. A Glance Back, Ending 2018 At the end of 2018, the economy added more than 19.4 million net new jobs over the span of 94 consecutive months of expansion. The national unemployment rate dropped below 4 percent, which is the lowest unemployment rate since 2000. The 15 percent improvement in the employment base created a positive foundation for 2019. Looking Forward to 2019 Economic forecasts for 2019 are positive. Argentum projects a robust labor market with ample opportunities for workforce entrants as well as advancement amongst seasoned laborers. The nation’s real gross domestic product (GDP) is estimated to increase by 2.8 percent in 2019. Following a 2.9 percent gain in 2018, the projection would represent two historic back-to-back years of growth. It is likely that the Federal Reserve will assume a neutral monetary policy, neither accommodative or restrictive. Trade woes may lead to higher prices for U.S. consumers, particularly on goods imported from China. Senior Households Thanks to recent tax cuts, most households can expect an improved financial outlook. Disposable personal income may increase by 2.6 percent, similar to income increases in 2017 and 2018. For households headed by seniors ages 65 to 74, median income bumped up 1.4 percent to about $50,804 in 2017, the most recent figures reported. While income growth has slowed, expenditures steadily rise. Average household expenditures exceeded $60,000 in 2017, an increase of 4.8 percent from 2016. On trend, seniors are still big spenders. Between 2012 and 2017, expenses in older households increased by 25 percent. In 2017 alone, households headed by seniors ages 65-74 experienced an 8.1 percent increase in expenditures. Seniors were not...

Build to Rent Update Jan31

Build to Rent Update

Yardi UK invited a team of northern property experts to The Slate Yard, a build-to-rent (BTR) development in Salford managed by urbanbubble, to discuss how the relatively nascent sector is evolving in the north of England and to explore the main obstacles that stand in the way of BTR’s future growth in the region. Participating in the discussion were: Michael Howard (MH), managing director, urbanbubble Matt Crompton (MC), joint managing director, Muse Developments Adam Higgins (AH), founder, Capital & Centric Shelagh McNerney (SM), head of development, Salford City Council Gavin Taylor (GT), regional general manager, Far East Consortium Simon Creasey, consulting editor (features), Property Week (chair) Where have we seen significant levels of BTR development take place in the north to date and why? MC: Manchester is streets ahead of other cities at the moment. I guess it comes down to the rental levels that you need to derive from occupiers and the void levels you can accommodate, which filters through the financial model to result in whether something is developable or not. The dynamics in Manchester work because you can see lots of activity happening here, but you don’t see as much activity happening in other strong northern cities – Liverpool, Leeds and the like. The same dynamic must exist in those cities in terms of agile workers that want to live there and have the flexibility of the BTR offer, but rents need to get to a level where developments become viable. SM: You can’t separate what’s going on in the housing market [in Greater Manchester] at the moment from all those large new employers coming into the city and I think that’s what distinguishes the area. While those other northern cities have got great assets and things to offer, it’s just the sheer...

Optimize Payments Jan30

Optimize Payments

There are two groups that want you to optimize online payments: your residents and your staff. According to the National Apartment Association, about 79 percent of residents prefer to pay their bills online. It’s quick, easy, and means one less task to occupy their time each month. Your staff wants to enjoy a workweek without opening mail, scanning checks, trips to the bank, or data entry into your real estate accounting software. When you increase adaptation to online payment processing, everyone wins. Check out these six tips to boost online payment enrollment. Provide easy access to the payment portal. Consider adding a button directly on your property website or prominently displayed on the resident portal. Make enrollment easy for your residents. Consider creating a step-by-step how-to guide on enrollment that includes screenshots. The text and visual aids will help your residents, resulting in fewer calls to your office for help. Designate a tablet or computer to online payment enrollment. When a resident visits the leasing office with a rent check, agents can then offer to help them setup online payments on the spot! Inform residents of their options. Some residents may be unfamiliar with the options available or not understand the lingo. Broadcast which options they have– ACH, Text to Pay, reoccurring EFT—and well as what each payment option means. Create an awareness campaign including emails, social media posts, and print posters at the leasing office (especially near the drop box). Consider a catchy slogan and imagery for the campaign that will stick in residents’ minds. As a last resort, create an incentive program. Consider gift certificates, prizes, or small discounts off the rent. The incentives are an upfront investment with long-term payoffs. Learn more about online Payment Processing with...

Energy Upgrades Jan29

Energy Upgrades

The biggest annual industry event of its kind in Canada provided visibility for one of the key issues in property management. A session at the Property Management Exposition & Conference (PM Expo 2018) in Toronto featured case studies of building energy system upgrades from commercial real estate services provider Colliers International and Triovest Realty Advisors Inc. Martin Levkus, regional director for Yardi Energy, moderated the session. Phillip Raffi, national energy and sustainability manager for Colliers, a Yardi Energy client, discussed a recent update of a 665,000-square-foot mixed-use building in Toronto. The company leveraged utility incentive programs and rebates to offset the costs of retrofitting lighting, installing variable fan drives, redoing the exterior sealant to reduce heat loss through the building envelope, and replacing the building’s boiler with two smaller units. The project produced annual natural gas savings of $33,000, the company’s first BOMA Best Platinum certification in Canada and a 72% reduction in energy use intensity, the energy used per square foot per year. Colliers, which offers energy management planning for all of its properties, has targeted a 5% annual energy reduction for the building. Kit Milnes, national sustainability manager for Triovest Realty Advisors Inc., described enhancements to two properties in Mississauga and Edmonton, Canada, as “the right tools that spark the right actions.” Upgrades included real-time metering and submetering, lighting retrofits, integrated building automation system operations and an optimized HVAC system. The lighting retrofit produced 500,000KwH savings per year at the Mississauga building, which also earned an ENERGY STAR® score of 91 and a BOMA TOBY (Outstanding Building of the Year) award. Meanwhile, the Edmonton property earned LEED EBOM (Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance) Gold certification, a 97 ENERGY STAR score and multiple local and national awards for energy performance. The key to...

A Seat at the Table Jan28

A Seat at the Table

Food is essential. For children, it can make the difference between growing strong and capable or struggling much of their lives. TABLE is a nonprofit organization that provides healthy emergency food aid each week to children in Chapel Hill and Carrboro, NC. Their work changes lives, and Yardi is proud to help. Addressing the Problem Food insecurity hits hard in North Carolina. It is ranked among the top eight states that have statistically higher food insecurity rates than the US national average. In the state, 80 percent of households with kids that are receiving food assistance don’t know where their next meal is coming from. Families make tough choices to survive. About 35 percent of families in need must choose between paying for food and housing costs. More than 40 percent must decide between buying food and heating their homes. Children are among the most vulnerable populations. In North Carolina, 30 percent of people receiving emergency food aid are under the age of 18. Nearly 25 percent of those kids are under the age of five. It’s a lot of data to swallow. The repercussions on hunger linger under the data. As children repeatedly lack access to nutritious food, their physical and mental well-being suffer. The consequences of hunger include an inability to focus, low academic performance, and chronic headaches and belly aches. TABLE steps in to fill the voids. Thoughtful and effective programming helps kids feel their best and fulfill their potential. Education at Work Providing nourishment is only a part of TABLE programming. The organization offers educational classes and activities to help kids sustain a healthy lifestyle. The Weekend Meal Backpack and Summer TABLE programs provide food for kids when they are not in school to receive free or reduced meals. Kids...

Client Spotlight Jan25

Client Spotlight

Yardi client MG Properties Group, based in San Diego, focuses on the acquisition, development, rehabilitation and management of apartment communities throughout the western United States. Over the last 26 years, CEO Mark Gleiberman has steered the company to the acquisition of more than 140 properties totaling approximately 20,000 units, and the management of more than 17,000 apartment homes in 55 communities in high-growth cities in California, Arizona, Nevada, Washington and Oregon, worth more than $2 billion combined. In October, the company acquired Carillon Apartment Homes, a 264-unit community in Woodland Hills, Calif., for $93 million. In February, MG Properties Group acquired Thorncroft Farms Apartments, a 340-unit multifamily community in Hillsboro, Ore., for $97.5 million. Talk about MG Properties Group focus and the areas you serve. Gleiberman: Historically, we have been a value-add buyer. We have in-house property management, in-house construction management, but there has been a bit of a shift in the last year or two, as we have seen the value-add deals getting extremely competitive and bid up in price. In that time, we shifted a bit to deals we would not have previously thought about buying, we are now buying. This includes more brand-new construction. This interview was originally published in Multi-Housing News, a Yardi publication. Read the rest of the interview with MHN’s Keith Loria...

Senior Living Utilities Jan24

Senior Living Utilities...

Keeping up with utilities and energy costs is a hurdle for most senior living communities. Argentum senior living association recently reported on industry forecasts and trends: about 49 percent of decision makers said energy and utility costs are a moderate challenge for their business. About 5 percent of their peers reported energy and utility costs as a significant challenge. Electricity on the Rise The challenge arises from an increase in energy and utility costs. U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports that commercial electricity prices increased 3 percent from 2016 to 2017. From 2017 to 2018, businesses witnessed an additional 1 percent increase. In 2019, EIA projects prices to increase an additional .6 percent to 10.86 cents per kilowatt hour. Not all regions are affected equally. The Pacific region may experience a 3.5 percent increase above the national average in 2019. On the lower end of the spectrum, the South Atlantic may experience an increase of only 1.5 percent. Some regions will enjoy a decline in costs. The West South Central may be relieved with a drop of -3.4 percent and New England with a drop of -2.4 percent. Natural Gas Projections The national average for gas prices is expected to average $8.02 per thousand cubic feet in 2019, up 1.5 percent from 2018. Regional variations above the national average include West North Central at 6.4 percent, East North Central at 5.9 percent, and Mountain at 4.2 percent. New England may receive an average price drop of -5.5 percent as well as the Middle Atlantic at -2.7 percent. “The declines won’t be enough to offset the sharp increases registered in 2018,” warned the report. Making Changes Overall, utility costs by square foot varied drastically. Some senior living communities reported costs as low as 69 center...

Staff Appreciation Jan23

Staff Appreciation

Do you have members on your team that go above and beyond the call of duty? Or maybe you want to reassure your staff that their opportunities are just that—opportunities! There are several reasons for employee appreciation efforts. But unless you can offer family vacations and luxury cars for everyone, you may struggle with affordable ways to convey that you care. Show your team some Valentine’s Day love with these creative and inexpensive staff appreciation ideas. First Things First—Thank Them Have you actually said, “Great work” or” Thank you”? If not, start there. The phrases are so simple but when they’re sincere, they’re effective and motivating. While exploring the other ideas on this list, be sure to include a verbal and/or written word of thanks to make the maximum impact. Affordable Group Outings Organize a free, outdoor activity for your staff. Consider a group hike, walk, frisbee golf, or team sport at a local park. Such activities encourage team members to get active (ahem, lower health care costs) while building camaraderie. Team Yoga Corporate yoga classes are another great way to unwind. Yoga can teach employees healthy ways to destress, control their emotional responses, boost energy, and improve sleep. The possible benefits are truly endless! Host a visiting teacher at your office to include as many employees as possible at a reasonable rate. You can also request a private class for your group at a local studio. Many studios will provide mats and affordable pricing for private groups. To accommodate the most students, consider a basic hatha or restorative yoga practices. Community Activities Many neighborhoods host inexpensive activities that can serve as a fun outing for your team–and you don’t have to organize the events! Outdoor movies, concerts, festivals, and food fairs are easy...

Medication Management Jan22

Medication Management...

Every day, millions of Americans start their morning the same way: with a handful of prescription pills. In fact, nearly a third of all adults take five or more medications regularly. In senior living communities, the number is even higher with the average resident consuming a staggering 12-14 medications per day, thanks, in part, to a concept known as the prescribing cascade. This begins when a drug is prescribed, an adverse drug event (ADE) occurs, and the symptoms are misinterpreted as an entirely new medical condition, for which an additional medication is prescribed. With advancements in science and technology, doctors and their patients now have thousands of different drugs to choose from. The influx of medications available on the market has caused prescription drug use to explode, growing 85% over the last two decades. This trend is exacerbated by a massive number of aging baby boomers, many of whom will soon require care. How can caregivers in the senior living industry manage medications and mitigate risk in an increasingly drug-dependent world? One of the simplest strategies to implement is called the five rights: The Right Drug Prescription medications often have names that are easily mixed up. To minimize confusion between those that look or sound alike, the FDA reviews about 300 drug names a year before they hit the market—and about one-third of the names drug companies propose are rejected. For this reason, it’s critical to double or triple check the order with the label on the prescription packaging. The Right Route There are more than fifteen ways to administer medication, so never make assumptions. A pill, for instance, can be swallowed, crushed or held inside the cheek. Check that the medication can be given as ordered. If it’s an injection, check to see if it should be administered intravenously or intramuscularly. And if the medication lacks specific instructions, ask. The Right Dose Improper dosing is the number one contributing factor to fatal drug errors. When people...

Social Strategies for 2019 Jan21

Social Strategies for 2019

In early January, Yardi returned as an exhibitor and sponsor of the Multifamily Social Media Summit (MFSMS) in Napa, California. The annual event provided a space for multifamily professionals to learn about the latest trends in social media marketing. Keep reading for conference takeaways and ideas to inform your 2019 marketing strategy. The Loyalty Loop Social media marketing has changed dramatically over the past five years. Each year, there seems to be a new platform, hack or algorithm shift to think about. At times, attracting and keeping your audience’s attention can be daunting. Andrew Davis, best-selling author and marketing guru, kicked off the MFSMS with a keynote focused on the new customer journey. The Loyalty Loop, as Davis describes it, “uses the tenants and prospects you have to attract the tenants you want.” Harnessing the power of intentional content marketing and experiential customer care, Davis challenged attendees to rethink the sales funnel. Want to inspire loyalty in your customer base? “You must pledge to be different,” Davis said. Questions to ask yourself: How does your community or company offer a unique experience? What inspires your tenants to talk about the place they live? Are you providing content that is helpful to your audience? “We don’t rent homes, we sell experiences!” says Davis. Making the renter experience great from the start will foster positive, long-lasting relationships with your customers. Beat the Algorithms Multifamily marketers are competing with cluttered social networks and everchanging algorithms. During the session “Staying Ahead of the Social Algorithm,” Dylan Sellberg, Product Manager at HubSpot, discussed the latest algorithm changes. His top tips to beat the algorithm: On Facebook, create and share highly visual content. Using new mediums, such as 3D photos, 360-degree videos and Facebook Live, are incentivized by Facebook, so being an early adopter is a smart move. Instagram highlights your property’s uniqueness in a highly visual format. Investing in quality photography will benefit your brand. Consider hiring a professional or purchasing equipment to create high-quality photos. Not only do high-quality photos and video perform better, but they also provide a glimpse of the experiences offered at your community. Video is Here to Stay “Video is the fastest growing medium in the digital landscape,” shared Jamie Gorski, Chief Marketing Officer at Bozzuto. According to data, 80% of global internet traffic will be attributed to video by 2020. Gorski, together with Elyse Cosgrove, Founder of Elysees Eye Productions, explored video trends during the session “Video Marketing in 2019: What Should Be Your Focus?” CEO features, customer stories and behind-the-scenes videos were the most engaging videos of last year. As we get into 2019, they recommended embracing new delivery methods. New mediums, like 360-degree videos, augmented reality and virtual reality, can help your brand stand out from the competition. “Use it now and you’ll be ahead of the game,” said Gorski. How will you use social media in your 2019 marketing strategy? Learn how Yardi can take your social media marketing to the next level this...