May 2007 Table of Contents

Dickens and Deals Dickens and Deals

Unlike late-night comics, I have nothing against lawyers. My father is an attorney—a real estate lawyer, in fact, so I became familiar with the concepts of zoning, easements, and planned unit developments (a.k.a. PUDs) at a frighteningly young age. Read more

Long Life? Long Life?

It's the age-old question for property owners: to replace or not to replace building products and appliances? A new study might just make that decision a little easier. Read more

Growth Plan

CAS Riverstone, formerly known as Riverstone Residential Group, in April acquired Woodland Hills, Calif.-based Stratus Real Estate for an undisclosed price, which brings Riverstone's fee management portfolio to 120,000 units throughout 625 properties. Read more

Up in Smoke

Sub-meter wiring leaves an AIMCO property burned. Read more

Direct Reports

Furry Neighbors, Call for Entries!, High Marks, Adobe Acrobatics, Homeland Security, Zealous Offer, Executive Feedback Read more

Tragic Kingdom Tragic Kingdom

Apparently it is a small world, after all. Too small, that is, for the Walt Disney Co. and California multifamily developer SunCal Cos., which are at odds over SunCal's proposed construction of a 1,500-unit condo and apartment complex in Anaheim's tourist zone, a 2.2 square mile patch of the O.C. that has been off-limits to residential development since 1994. Read more

Blooming Market Washington, D.C. Blooming Market

Spring brings tourists to Washington to see the cherry blossoms, but this year it also is bringing a sense of hope to developers and brokers that the housing correction of 2006 is a thing of the past. After a record-setting pace of new condo contract sales in 2005—about 13,700 units sold—sales activity slowed in 2006, especially in the second half of the year. As a result, only 6,600 new units sold in the Washington metro area, which includes the District of Columbia, Northern Virginia, and suburban Maryland. Contract cancellations played a large role in the sales drop-off, as previously sold-out buildings started to deliver and several buyers got skittish near settlement. Read more

Surprise! Surprise!

BRE Properties CEO and President Connie Moore was headed for a California Housing Council meeting in Foster City—but she needed directions. So she stopped in at BRE's Fosters Landing property. Needless to say, the property manager and regional manager, who happened to be on site, weren't expecting the CEO's impromptu visit. “They looked at me like, ‘Oh my God. Why is she here all by herself?” recalls Moore, who runs the San Francisco-based REIT. “I knew they were nervous. Anytime there's someone that many layers ahead of you [on the corporate ladder], you want to make sure all of the balloons and the flowers are out at the property.” Read more

Rejuvenation Station Rejuvenation Station

In 1931, the Texas & Pacific station welcomed rail passengers to Fort Worth with Art Deco elegance. The lobby was resplendent with marble floors, gilded ceilings, and extravagant chandeliers. In addition to serving passengers, the building included 11 floors of office space. Read more

Tax Time Tax Time

Jennifer Bonar Gray's job is unlike any other in the multifamily industry: As the new vice president of tax at the National Multi Housing Council, this Capitol Hill veteran is dedicated exclusively to federal and state multifamily tax issues as part of the joint legislative program of NMHC and the National Apartment Association. Read more

Lighten Up Lighten Up

When developer Walker Robinson decided to turn the site of an automobile repair shop into high-end residential condominiums, he knew he was building for a tough crowd in Manhattan's West Chelsea art gallery district. Read more

Marquee Park Place Project of the Month Marquee Park Place

Walking through the main lobby of Marquee Park Place—Orange County, Calif.'s answer to the urban high-rise craze—you get a sense that you're not in a run-of-the-mill condo building. It's more like a five-star luxury hotel. Read more

Big Deal

Like many New Yorkers, Carol Lamberg holds vivid memories of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village, the mammoth brick housing complexes that occupy an 80-acre footprint on the Big Apple's East Side. Read more

Taming the Tech Monster Taming the Tech Monster

Two years ago, Steve Heimler, founder and CEO of Stratus Real Estate in Woodland Hills, Calif., was facing a five-headed monster. To meet the demands of various clients since its inception in 1989, the third-party manager had adopted a myriad of technology. By 2005, it was running five separate property and asset management systems. Areas such as training and support for on-site staff were growing increasingly complex to manage. Worse, Heimler worried whether the firm could maintain consistent practices—and results—across its 23,000-unit portfolio with so many different technologies in use. Read more

Inside Out Living Inside Out Living

When it comes to multifamily living, more and more residents are interested in outdoor living space—patios, balconies, and terraces that bring light into their homes and allow them to enjoy nature. Read more

The Crest at 63 Wall Street The Crest at 63 Wall Street

Wall Street has long been synonymous with financial power-houses and marquee brokerage firms. But these days, this Manhattan mainstay is quickly building up a repertoire of trendy residential living. Among its offerings: The Crest at 63 Wall Street. Read more

2007 MFE Top 50

2007 MFE Top 50 Read more

The Opportunists Top 50: Trends The Opportunists

Whether you run an apartment firm, develop condos, or manage apartments, it's impossible to ignore the latest for-sale housing foreclosure numbers. Florida alone reported 19,144 households in a state of foreclosure in February, up 63 percent from January, according to RealtyTrac. What's behind this foreclosure surge? Buyers with shaky credit scores who obtained sub-prime loans during the housing boom are now defaulting on their mortgages in record numbers because they can't keep up with their mortgage payments. Read more

2007 MFE Top 50: Builders - The Ground Breakers 2007 MFE Top 50: Builders - The Ground Breakers

It's good to be an apartment developer again. Rental builders across the country breathed a collective sigh of relief last year as the once red-hot condo market began to cool. They took advantage of the long-awaited marketplace shift and broke ground on a large number of rental units in 2006. Read more

2007 MFE Top 50: Owners - The Capitalists Top 50: Owners 2007 MFE Top 50: Owners - The Capitalists

Moving, shaking, and dominating. That was Morgan Stanley Real Estate in '06. The company has had a multifamily presence for some time, but after acquiring platforms and portfolios with fervor, it vaulted to near the top of this year's owners list. Read more

2007 MFE Top 50: Managers - The Rainmakers Top 50: Managers 2007 MFE Top 50: Managers - The Rainmakers

In the world of multifamily deal-making, everyone in the industry focuses on the owners, as they sell this property and buy that one. Read more

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