Village Green, already rated as one of the top property management firms in the country, continues to see opportunity. Ian Bingham, vice president of business development at Village Green, talks about what’s on the horizon and how the company is formulating strategy.
There are now anti-developer sentiments in some major markets. Some municipalities are being stricter with affordability requirements along with codes. For instance, Bingham points out that Chicago is talking about implementing rent control.
This, among other things, is starting to push development into suburbs and away from the urban core. Bingham believes that the industry reality is that developers are targeting markets and no longer defining the market as urban or suburban. However, Bingham says that the current position of CAP rates and the increases in interest rates are pushing Village Green to suburban areas.
Bingham explains that uncertainty has fueled the markets, but for multifamily specifically there is a lot of anxiety that may create opportunity, especially for Village Green. He says that the company isn’t alone in seeing that opportunity – in certain markets, new development assets are giving away two- or three-month concessions. The loss that this creates is leading the owners of these properties to question their management decisions.
Bingham says that Village Green seized the opportunity to the tune of 10,000 new units last year on a third-party basis.
He also says that Village Green is learning the same lesson as most developers and owners regarding their renter demographics. Bingham says that Village Green has about 60% empty nester and 40% Millennial tenants, and that the Millennial isn’t the strong driver that was thought last year.
The upside is that the amenities that they were focused on for Millennials translate well to empty nesters. Bingham says that there is no age restriction on cool; everyone who is a renter will be attracted to good amenities.
Village Green’s purpose statement reads “Live better, live social, live green,” which is covered in the company’s branding guidelines. Bingham is proud to say that the company adheres to the guidelines and the statement isn’t just about social media buzz. He says it helps infuse a different eclectic approach tailored to each site that resonates with the residents of each development.
Plus, he says, “Live green” has become much easier. He points out that Fannie and Freddie are now incentivizing environmentally sound elements and every Village Green property is looking for ways to have better energy performance to reduce resident costs. For instance, the company is looking into solar for common areas and for heating the pools for properties in the Sunbelt.