HOT & RELEVANT TOPICS
Healthy Home Features a Priority for Renters
Personal health has become a focus for renters due to Covid-19, and that trend is leading to an increased preference for green apartments. Overall, 3% more renters believe that green apartment living is beneficial for their health compared with last year, according to AMLI Residential’s Sustainable Living Index. Residents reported a desire for fresh air initiatives, energy efficiencies and recycling, as well as concerns over smoke-free living and global warming. As a result of Covid-19, 71% of residents said that they place increased value on healthy building features, and 41% said that they expect to spend more time working from home in 2021 than they did prior to the pandemic.
Decisions You Never Knew Pet Data Could Help You Make
Apartment operators often remain inclined to rely on instinct because that’s what they’ve always done. That’s despite a mass influx of available data that can help enhance those insights. During the PropTech revolution, data is available for virtually everything, and that includes key pet metrics. Onsite teams often struggle to manage assistance animal accommodation requests, but data can help reshape their processes. For instance, 43% of submitted accommodation requests were insufficient according to a PetScreening study, although only 1% met the definition of fraud. Most insufficient requests were due to other factors, such as lack of proper documentation. Additionally, dogs accounted for 83% of all requests.
The Current Status of Eviction Bans by State
Current eviction parameters significantly vary from state to state, as the nation features a healthy mix of states where evictions are banned, partially banned or fully allowed. The 120-day eviction ban as part of the CARES Act has now expired, leaving states to decide their eviction protocols on an individual basis. Some have extended measures while others have effectively ended bans. With extended unemployment benefits also expired, a significant uptick in evictions could occur in many locales. As of Aug. 7, 18 states banned evictions, nine more had partial bans and 23 allowed evictions.
IN THE NEWS
Multifamily Executives Returning to the Office
Multifamily executives have spent much of the pandemic working to keep onsite associates safe. Now, they’re applying those same practices as they return to the workplace themselves. At some multifamily companies, as many as two-thirds of corporate employees are back at their desks. Arrival times and shifts are often staggered, masks are worn, distances kept and sanitization practices are strictly followed. Workspaces are also being renovated or reconfigured to help reduce the risk. Depending on the level of spread in a specific region of the country, additional precautions may be implemented and many executives still work remotely part-time.
Apartment Market Showing Slight Dips in Operating Statistics
With the pandemic still in full force in many parts of the country, apartment metrics experienced slight declines in the week ending Aug. 9. Average leads dropped from 9.54 to 9.37 and average leases from 3.43 to 3.24 at apartment communities across the nation, while national occupancy and leased percentages remained flat. While the weekly numbers didn’t signify a significant drop, traffic was down 15.7% compared with last year, which marked the largest year-over-year gap since the pandemic arrived in March. Five markets, however, experienced higher year-over-year traffic: Orlando, Fla., Portland, Ore., San Diego, San Jose, Calif. and Seattle.
Pricing Apartments During a Pandemic
Revenue management has helped guide multifamily operators through past recessions, and it’s being used once again during the current economic downturn to help determine pricing. However, not all pricing tools of the past have applied during the Covid-19 pandemic. Determining whether to lower rent to stimulate demand, and how to price various floorplans has required close attention to the data. Factors such as move-in delays, concessions and eviction moratoriums have created unique revenue management challenges. But a revenue management system that can guide operators and locate breaking points can allow them not just to survive the downturn, but also to possibly realize unexpected growth.