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May 6, 2015

Affordability Remains a Key Concern

The apartment market’s strong performance in 2014 continues to spill over into 2015, as initial reads on first quarter rent growth suggest a pace not seen since 3Q 2011. This sustained growth is credited with a multitude of repercussions, from propping up inflation to putting a squeeze on renters’ wallets.

Currently, rental housing costs eat up more than half of pay for one in four renters. However, for those with the so-called “worst-case housing needs,” things are improving. According to new HUD analysis, the number of people with severe housing problems has decreased as jobs have recovered and new apartment construction has increased supply.

But with rents in many metro areas expected to continue climbing this year, affordability is likely to remain a familiar refrain and create additional headwinds for the industry. In his latest blog post, NMHC President Doug Bibby looks at the factors driving the headlines and offers tips from his playbook on how to tactfully address these rising concerns.

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OPERATIONS

Multifamily Debates the Need for a Smith Travel Research Model of Benchmarking

Unlike other industries using real-time revenue management, the multifamily industry never developed a universal standard to benchmark achieved revenue. Benchmarking could enable operators to better understand whether an individual property’s market share is growing or shrinking. But do the apartment industry’s idiosyncrasies make it impossible?

HUMAN RESOURCES

Deadline to Participate in Annual Compensation Survey Extended to May 22

NMHC and Towers Watson Data Services are partnering again for the 2015 National Multifamily Housing Industry Compensation Survey. The survey covers market-level compensation, key employment trends and work-life policies, making it an essential resource for attracting and retaining associates and executives. Click here to complete the survey by May 22. First-time respondents will need to complete an initial registration.

AMENITIES

Developer Bets Big on Apartments with Shared Eating Spaces

Local developer aims to shake up Washington, D.C.’s real estate scene with unique properties featuring small, furnished studio apartments set in bustling, historical neighborhoods. Central to the vision are robust shared spaces, where residents interact daily in communal living rooms and shared dining rooms.

STUDENT HOUSING

Sector Leaders Take Stock, Look Ahead at the Next Five Years

The student housing sector has come a long way over the years, and not just in the quality of the product. In this latest Multifamily Foursight column, four industry leaders share their takes on the biggest trends and major concerns they’ve encountered over the past five years and what they expect to see in the next five years.

SUSTAINABILITY

Shared Solar Could Open Up Photovoltaic Market to Multifamily

Multifamily’s “split incentive” when it comes to energy efficiency has made it difficult for either owners or residents to be motivated to purchase photovoltaic systems for rental properties. However, shared solar could create new opportunities for solar deployment in apartments. This report examines the shared solar landscape, market potential and federal regulatory environment.

DIVERSITY

NMHC Members Invited to Participate in CREW Network's Career Benchmarking Survey by May 15

As part of NMHC’s Diversity Initiative, we are partnering with CREW Network (Commercial Real Estate Women) on its third annual benchmarking study. Developed in conjunction with MIT Center for Real Estate, the study aims to understand the factors that influence career satisfaction for both men and women in commercial real estate. Responses to the short online survey are due May 15.

NETWORKING

Three-in-One Emerging Leaders Event Set for May 28 in Houston

Have your rising stars join us for a unique three-in-one Emerging Leaders event on May 28 in Houston, The event begins with a tour of Hanover Post Oak, a new, luxury, 30-story high-rise in the heart of Uptown, followed by a panel discussion with former Hanover CEO Murry Bowden; Bob Harvey, CEO of the Greater Houston Partnership; andAl J. Hirshberg, Executive Vice President, ConocoPhillips. The event concludes with a networking reception at RDG + Bar Annie.

In Case You Missed It
A hand-selected collection of noteworthy articles on a wide variety of issues of interest to apartment executives.
2015 NMHC Spring Board of Directors Meeting Recap

Renters Are Staying Put

Changes in FHA Multifamily Lending Requirements Squeeze Lenders, Owners

Related Buys 3,000-Unit Affordable Housing Portfolio

New Report Threatens Support for Popular EB-5 Program for Foreign Investors

NMHC/NAA Support Grassroots Effort to Save Funding for Critical Census Housing Survey

Onsite Doggie Daycare Lures Pet-Loving Residents

Investors on the Hunt for Higher Returns, Attracted to Rental Property

U.S. Spends More on Homeowner Subsidies Than Affordable Housing

Quantitative Analysis Accelerates Single-Family Rental Investing

Freddie Mac to Buy Largest Property on West Coast

NYC and HUD Launch Nation’s Largest Energy Savings Program for a Public Housing Authority

Fire Escapes Going Extinct as Building Codes Shift

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A must-read for top apartment industry professionals, Apartment Wire is a timely review of emerging trends in apartment finance, development, management and technology and more, featuring both exclusive content from NMHC's staff of experts and provocative articles from across the web.
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Upcoming Meetings
THIS MONTH

2015 NMHC Emerging Leaders Speaker Series – Houston, TX

May 28, 2015
Hanover Post Oak in Houston, TX

SEPTEMBER

2015 NMHC Fall Board of Directors and Advisory Committee Meeting

September 15 - 17, 2015
The Fairmont Hotel in Washington, DC

2015 NMHC Emerging Leaders Speaker Series – Washington, DC
September 15, 2015

Washington, DC

2015 NMHC Student Housing Conference & Exposition

September 28 - 30, 2015
Arizona Biltmore in Phoenix, AZ


Multifamily Market Dashboard

Fannie, Freddie on Pace to Meet Loan Caps Early

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are on track to meet their respective $30 billion loan caps before the end of the year, given loan volume in the first quarter. The mortgage agencies combined for $20.4 billion in multifamily loan purchases in 1Q 2015, up significantly year over year.

Given the brisk pace of closings and the firm commitments in the pipeline, industry stakeholders remain concerned that hitting the caps could cause disruption in the financing market. NMHC’s most recent Quarterly Survey results showed that, while conditions for debt financing for the sector remain generally favorable, more concern about the availability of debt is beginning to creep into the market.

Agency lenders are pressing for loan-cap relief. NMHC staff also recently met with Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) Director Mel Watt and key agency members to share industry concern over the caps and then issued a follow-up letter to stress that FHFA maintain multifamily capital flow. Sources suggest the regulator could have a response to the situation soon.


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