I don’t remember much about the day I graduated from college, hazy as I was from too much fun the night before. But I didn’t have that problem the day I took the helm as editor-in-chief of Multifamily Executive, which in some ways was my true graduation.
I’ve spent the past six years living and breathing the apartment business as a senior editor for our sister publications Apartment Finance Today and Affordable Housing Finance. And what a time it’s been, full of sound and fury, watching empires rise and then fall victim to the Great Recession, only to now rise again.
But the dizzying highs and terrifying lows of the past six years represent just the latest tectonic shift in the apartment industry’s bedrock. The creation of HUD, the Tax Reform Act of 1986, and the Resolution Trust Corp. all, in their own ways, fundamentally altered the multifamily business.
And today, we’re perched on the edge of the next great disruption.
I’m not talking about the upcoming presidential election, or the future of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, or the prospect of more tax reform. Those events will have a significant impact, no doubt. But for my money, the maturation of Gen Y will be a high watermark, a crest that carries this industry to new and greater heights.
And student housing, at the vanguard of Gen Y, is already surfing the tidal wave. The sector has rapidly evolved away from its humble “Animal House” origins to become the darling of Wall Street. And as more colleges and universities privatize on-campus housing, the industry’s growth will only accelerate, as we explore in our feature story.
Elsewhere, our own crack team of resident Gen Y writers, Derek Mearns and Jane M. Wolkowicz, take a look at Millennial household formation trends, the markets with the greatest student housing need, and the latest in student housing tech trends.
And since summer is construction season, Derek visited a jobsite near Atlanta, hard hat in hand, to profile a typical day in the life of a multifamily contractor. Finding a site to visit was incredibly easy—in fact, I dare you to find a metro area skyline that isn’t filled with a few swinging cranes these days.
The enthusiasm rippling throughout the industry, driven by Millennial demand, is contagious. And it’s reflected in all we do here at Multifamily Executive. Our Concept Community project, a multimedia deep dive into designing for Gen Y, is in full bloom. The upcoming Multifamily Executive Conference in October will feature sessions dedicated to social media trends, micro unit designs, and the hottest tech industry–driven secondary markets, in addition to the great programming you’ve come to expect.
And, soon, the magazine will go live with a stunning redesign that will not only update its look and feel, but also offer a more effective way of delivering content.
In the end, this magazine is an extension of all of you—a chronicle of the opportunities and challenges that shape your daily lives, and a peek at what’s coming around the bend.
So, now that you know a little bit about what we’re up to, I’m hoping you’ll return the favor. Please take a moment to shoot me an e-mail and tell me what you like about the magazine and, more importantly, where we can improve.
These are your pages, after all. We’re just here to fill them.