AMLI Residential is focused on the development, acquisition, and management of luxury apartment communities across the United States. The firm is based in Chicago and active in a variety of markets including Atlanta, Denver, Houston and Austin in Texas, Seattle, and locations in Florida and California. AMLI took a jump from No. 47 on the list last year to No. 43 by increasing its units owned from 22,730 to 24,150. MFE spoke with Gregory T. Mutz, chairman and CEO, about the company’s success and challenges faced last year and what he foresees for the rest of 2019.
MFE: To what do you attribute your rising in the ranks of the NMHC list?
Mutz: AMLI is sticking to the basics and to our knitting. At this stage in the recovery from the ’08–’09 financial collapse, we do not intend to deviate from what we know and what we are able to execute in an efficient, high-quality manner in creating value for AMLI’s investors.
MFE: What were two or three successes you had last year?
Mutz: We broke ground and made considerable progress on AMLI Fountain Place, our 45-story, 367-unit luxury apartment high rise in Dallas. We completed our AMLI Arc, our 40-story, 393-unit luxury apartment high-rise in Seattle. We also made considerable progress on AMLI Marina del Rey, our 585-unit luxury waterfront apartment community in Marina del Rey, Calif., and broke ground on AMLI Midtown Miami, our 719-unit luxury apartment midrise in Miami.
MFE: What are your challenges this year?
Mutz: AMLI continues to battle multifamily’s version of the biblical Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: 1. Labor shortages everywhere in construction, development, and property management; 2. Understaffed city building and development departments; 3. Tariffs and rapidly increasing construction costs; and 4. Excessive high-end Class A supply in virtually every market in which we develop and operate.
MFE: How do you plan to address those challenges?
Mutz: Carefully and cautiously. There are virtually zero development home runs available and actually not that many triples in the marketplace. AMLI is aiming to produce a steady stream of doubles and singles, avoid errors, stay on base, and score our share of runs by being disciplined, focused, and quality-oriented. We are also taking our sustainability game up and working hard to be the premier environmentally responsible multifamily company in our industry.