Hey RICHMOND!!!Do you love supporting LOCAL businesses and organizations?That's what I love MOST about my job. I’ve been in the commercial real estate and brokerage world for over 15 years. I get to help local businesses and organizations find a place to call home right here in Richmond. In fact, here are my TOP 5 Favorite Projects:#1) Flooring RVA.We helped find them a new showroom with more space AND we were able to help find a tenant to replace their previous lease so they could make a clean break.#2) The Summit (Scott’s Addition area).Such a great, action packed area of town where we were able to help long time friends sell two different properties at the same time.#3) Nomad Deli & Catering Company.Anthony and his family are proof that the American Dream is alive. They started this family owned business as tenants, but eventually bought their building and have continued a successful (and delicious) restaurant!#4) LUX ChurchThis is a great community minded organization that brought life back into a building that was over 130 years old and an area landmark.#5) Liberty Public HouseWhen Alexa told us about her dream concept of a restaurant inside a renovated, historical building, we knew we had just the right property for her! In fact, she moved all the way back to Richmond from the west coast to fulfill her dream of being a restaurant owner.
Posted by Sperity Real Estate Ventures on Tuesday, June 30, 2020
These days, businesses simply can’t survive without a website. The internet is the first place a customer looks when they are looking to work with a business. With every business building a webpage, it can be hard to stand out. In order to get attention, you need to focus on your niche. If you run a real estate company, there are a few industry specific aspects of your website that deserve special attention. The following advice will help you focus your efforts so that customers are impressed when they view your page.
Add Quality Videos and Photos
There is absolutely no excuse for a pixelated image on your website. Pixelated photos and videos don’t allow customers to see the quality of the property. Instead, they get the impression that you don’t take pride in your work. On the other hand, HD photos and video show that you do high quality work. Video courses are a powerful type of lead magnet to include on your website. Quality video with nice music can help a customer build an emotional connection to the properties on display. It can be expensive to hire a quality photographer, but the returns are worth it.
The last thing you want to do to a customer is drag them through tours of properties that don’t catch their interest. This tires the customer, destroys their enthusiasm, and strains your relationship. You can avoid this with a virtual tour. With the emergence of 360-degree cameras, many real estate companies are starting to put together virtual tours of the properties that they sell and lease. This allows customers to get a better idea of what properties they want to visit in person. If a customer sees that you offer virtual tours, they will be much more interested in working with you, than a company that only shows pictures.
In order to increase customer traffic to your website, you need to appear more in online searches. One of the best ways to do that is through content creation like a blog. Having a regularly updated blog will move you up in search engine algorithms. Having quality blog posts will create a good impression with your customers. It is a great way for you to show them your industry knowledge.
Working in real estate is a rewarding business. You are helping people find their dream space. You want to make sure that your hard work is paying off. By updating your website and following the above advice, you will see an increase in customers that trust in your ability to get the job done.
Looking for a new, bigger business location? We can help.
When a person decides to purchase or lease a new commercial property, it can be one of the most expensive investments they will make for their business. This is why it is so important to make sure that you are getting what you pay for. Unfortunately, one of the pitfalls of being a new buyer is not being able to see some of the most common red flags. The following list includes three commercial real estate red flags you should always keep an eye out for.
Most of the time, red flags within a commercial property will be in the details. These problematic areas can seem okay at a glance but can actually be at the brink of disrepair. An issue that will come up a lot is amateur repairs or additions to the property. Some businesses do not want to pay thousands of dollars in repairs and thus will attempt to cheaply repair certain areas. Although some jobs might be satisfactory, you should always ask for work permits and city inspection documents to have concrete evidence that everything is up and running correctly.
Although you should focus on the details, there are major areas that cannot be ignored. One of the most important ones of these includes the roof. Roof damage can do considerable damage to your business if you are planning to store products within your commercial property. An additional red flag you might run into is the seller attempting to fix the roof in order to close the deal. While roof repair can help, it can’t fix everything. Once water penetrates the building, a broken roof might be the least of your problems. Water can run down walls and destroy pipes and create dangerous mold.
Before you sign on the dotted line, you should always make sure to ask about who is liable for regular maintenance. If the contract places you as the responsible party to repair issues within areas such as the HVAC systems or plumbing, you might want to renegotiate your contract. This attempt to place this workload and cost on you can be seen as a red flag.
Purchasing a commercial real estate property can be quite an expensive endeavor, and thus it’s important to protect your investment. Apply the information above to help you look out for common red flags.
Looking for great business properties? Browse opportunities here!
Have you noticed a recent spike in your monthly rent? A lot of people have, and it’s a trend not only locally but in markets across the country.
According to http://news.investors.com, over the past several years homeowning has become more difficult and former homeowners are now becoming tenants in mulitifamily dwellings. Due in large part to the economic downturn, many homeowners today can no longer afford to pay a monthly mortgage and instead are resorting to the next alternative: renting apartments.
As with most news, this is a mixed bag — it’s not good for renters, but it does make for a strong market for multifamily properties, supporting higher sales prices and spurring new development and redevelopment of multifamily properties. (see last week’s post about local development for current examples of this happening right here in Richmond)
Across the nation, multifamily properties are leading in occupancy and rent growth when compared to commercial developments, like office space and retail properties.
In a recent housing study by commercial property brokerage firm Cassidy Turley, chief economist Kevin Thorpe said:
“I’m optimistic about the multifamily sector, certainly for the next two years…We’ve entered a period of sustained rent growth.”
This recent boom in multiple tenants occupying apartment units is due to the fact that the average renter a year ago could afford the rent for a single family home when now the cost is too high.
Have you seen this happening when your lease has come up for renewal? What do you think the renting forecast will look like in RVA for the rest of 2012?
This makeover was the highlight of discussion at Venture Richmond’s Annual Downtown Development Forum last Thursday, May 31st, as Richmond’s business leaders, developers and architects met to reveal their latest ideas for up and coming projects.
Proposed projects included the VCU School of Medicine building, the Virginia Biotechnology Park, a 150,000-square-foot addition for Health Diagnostic Laboratory Inc, as well as several apartment buildings in the Manchester and business districts.
Over $120 million is going into creating more residential spaces across the downtown area, according to agbeat.com, who says the recent heightened demand for apartments is a result of the drop in the Multifamily Vacancy Index (MVI).
Fyi, the MVI measures the multifamily housing industry’s perception of vacancies which has recently dropped to a level of 31, an all time low.
“Multifamily construction continues to be a bright spot in the overall housing market,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe, in a report by agbeat.com.
Residential development across Richmond was a large part of the revitalization plans discussed at last Thursday’s forum. For more information about how the State is funding these different projects, click here.
“We’re a long way from closing,” said Franklin Development’s Manager, Thomas Wilkinson, who discussed the possibility of over 300 apartments, office space and an upscale grocer at Thurday’s forum.
Although the project plans aren’t official yet, Wilkinson assures Richmond-ers that the development will revitalize the Manchester district and appeal to the area’s increasipopulations on. Checkouts Richmond BizSense’s coverage of the Reynolds Development for more info.
Millions of dollars from the City are being put into new construction on the VCU campuses, as well as some of Richmond’s most beloved landmarks, including the Main Street Station Clock Tower and 17th Street.
The idea behind Richmond’s makeover? To transform traditonal buildings and warehouses into modern, revitalized structures for public use.
Be sure to keep your eyes open, as these new developments pop up across the city!
Five years ago, Rocketts Landing – the rural neighborhood of Richmond bordering Downtown and Churchill along the James River – was desolate, barren and considered as just a watering hole by local fisherman. It was pretty much unheard of by the general public.
Two years ago, that all changed with The Boathouse at Rocketts Landing opening in 2010 and The Conch Republic soon after in 2011. The area was completely transformed into an attractive, scenic stretch of restaurants along the James and tourists, visitors, locals, couples, families and Richmond-ers flocked like seagulls.
Today, Rockett’s Landing is making an even bigger splash. One of the Richmond area’s biggest law firms, Brown Greer, is relocating its headquarters to the 38,000-square-foot Cedar Works Building along the riverfront on Dock Street.
Although the building still needs to be renovated, there are major factors in favor of moving to Rocketts, according to Principal Orran Brown: convenient parking, the location, and the long-term prospects of what Rocketts Landing could develop into.
In the mean time, be sure to visit Rocket’s Landing on Sunday, May 27th for Rocketts Red Glare. The event will feature the Kings of Swingband and a fireworks display to benefit the Neighborhood Resource Center of Greater Fulton.
About once a month I get a question about the large, vacant property that borders Staples Mill Road that is just north of West Broad Street, right over the Henrico Count line. My answer is always that it was an old, rundown neighborhood that was purchased and cleared with the intention of rebuilding, and that the developer is the same group that is doing the project at Monument Avenue and Willow Lawn Drive — Gumenick Properties. As to why it hasn’t been started, well just look around at new building all around the country. The developer was obviously waiting until the economy turns around.
But, I always have to give that answer with the caveat that the last official word I had heard about it was a few years ago. I couldn’t even be sure that the same plans were in place. Thankfully I can point to this article on Richmond.com that gives us the lowdown on the current situation — which is pretty much as described as above. It sounds as though things are just on hold, but the same big plans are still on the books. In fact, this project is expected to take 10 years even once they finally get underway.
You need to go read the article to see all of the reported details, but I thought I would share a couple of details of the plans here:
What: Staples Mill Centre, proposed to include 1,096 apartments, 571 condominiums, 391 townhouses, 32 single-family homes, 60,000 square feet of offices, and 100,000 square feet of stores.
Where: About 80 acres between Staples Mill Road, Libbie Avenue and Bethlehem Road, near Interstate 64.
[cetsEmbedGmap src=http://maps.google.com/maps?q=Staples+Mill+Rd+%26+Suburban+Ave,+Richmond,+VA&hl=en&ll=37.591213,-77.49316&spn=0.011885,0.026157&sll=37.588289,-77.492216&sspn=0.011953,0.026157&vpsrc=0&hnear=Staples+Mill+Rd+%26+Suburban+Ave,+Brookland,+Henrico,+Virginia+23230&t=m&z=16 width=350 height=425 marginwidth=0 marginheight=0 frameborder=0 scrolling=yes]
So you’ve had a roof leak for a while, making the drywall from the ceiling cave in..and who knows, maybe there is mold in there?! You called the landlord or property manager about the problem when you first noticed it, which was 2 months ago, and maybe they sounded like they were going to take care of it (and maybe they didn’t) — but you haven’t heard from them since. What do you do?
This is important. Do not stop paying rent. There is no advantage to be gained legally by withholding rent, even if the place becomes untenable. The courts do not look kindly on a tenant taking that kind of decision into their own hands.
Instead, listen to the advice given in this recent article by Richmond.com, “Don’t Let The Walls (Or Ceiling) Cave In On You“:
- Be current in your rent
- Give your landlord written notice of the problem
- Wait a reasonable amount of time
After a reasonable amount of time has passes, take a copy of the written notice, along with the next months rent, down to the John Marshall general district court at 400 N. Ninth Street. A clerk will help you file a legal assertion.
There is a small filing fee of $56 to file assertion. We’ve even tracked down the onlinie form, DC-429, available through Virginia courts here.
If you stop paying rent, you may still be liable for late fees and other repercussions for being late (i.e., bad marks on your credit or even eviction). You are not alone or powerless against a landlord, but you have to play by the rules that have been set up to protect everyone involved.
Have you been through this process with the courts? I would be grateful if you share your experience below in the comments, so that everyone can learn from it!
Understanding Landlord Insurance
By: Dona DeZube
Published: September 1, 2010
Turning your home into a rental or buying an investment property? Expect to pay up to 20% more for the right insurance policy to protect your property.
Rental properties require their own type of coverage–landlord insurance, which is different than the homeowners policy you buy when you live in a house yourself. Landlord insurance protects you against losses from fire, lighting, falling trees, wind and hail, water damage, and injury to your tenants and their guests.
But it doesn’t cover the renters’ household goods. So encourage tenants to buy a renters policy to cover their stuff. You can even include a clause in your lease saying they have to buy renters insurance, so everyone is clear about what’s insured and what’s not.
Landlord insurance is expensive
You’ll pay 15% to 20% more for a landlord insurance policy than you will for a homeowners policy on the same house–and even more if you offer short-term rentals. Start your policy shopping by calling the company that sold you your homeowners insurance, then check with an independent insurance agent selling commercial and business policies.
Ask how you can get discounts if you have fire prevention devices, burglar alarms, or multiple properties.
What a landlord insurance policy probably will cover:
- Lightning, windstorm, hail, explosion, riot and civil commotion, smoke, falling objects, snow, ice, sleet, vandalism, sonic boom, sprinkler leakage, frozen pipes, water damage, burglary, volcanoes, and sinkholes.
- Things that belong to you that stay at the property, like appliances, furniture, or lawn care equipment. Keep an inventory of what’s on site.
- Outbuildings, like sheds or garages, although this coverage will have its own limit (probably 10% of the overall insurance policy amount).
- Costs to defend yourself against lawsuits filed by tenants or guests, as well as the costs awarded if you lose the case. Some policies cover medical bills for injuries; some don’t.
- Lost rental income if the property is damaged and you can’t rent it.
What a landlord insurance policy probably won’t cover:
- The tenants’ belongings.
- Your rental property if it’s vacant for more than 30 days. Seek an exemption in advance from your landlord insurance company as soon as you know the property is going to be vacant.
- War and nuclear, biological, chemical, or radiological attacks.
Optional coverage you might want to buy:
- Vandalism (if the policy you buy excludes it)
- Pool and tennis court insurance
- Liability for personal injury, wrongful eviction, wrongful entry, libel, and slander
Don’t forget liability coverage
To cover yourself in case you lose a big court case filed by an injured tenant, buy anumbrella insurance policy that gives you liability protection for $1 million to $5 million or more if you have a lot of assets to protect.
Don’t file a claim unless you absolutely have to
There’s a limit to how many claims you can file before insurance companies start charging you more or canceling your policies. Claims can quickly add up as you buy more rental properties.
One time you always want to file a claim is when someone says they’ve been injured on your property. One claim you’ll want to avoid filing: water damage for less than $10,000 because worries about mold growing in water-damaged properties will lead some insurers to immediately cancel your insurance policy.
More from HouseLogic
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Dona DeZube, HouseLogic’s News Editor, has been writing about real estate for over two decades. She lives in a suburban Baltimore 1970s rancher on a 3-acre lot shared with possums, raccoons, foxes, a herd of deer, and her blue-tick hound.
Visit houselogic.com for more articles like this.
Copyright 2011 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®
There is always a lot of new legislation passed every year that sounds like a good idea at the time and generally goes unnoticed, and every once in a while the consequences of that legislation become horrifyingly apparent afterwards.
This past year, the legislation that was causing so much heartburn for small property owners was a new IRS requirement that anyone with rental property file a 1099 for any repairs that add up to $600+ over the course of the year. (see my post about it here, from December 2010)
Good news — the provision was repealed before it could take effect!! (here is the actual legislation that was passed to repeal the IRS provision, in case you would like to read it)
Hats off to the Realtor community for standing against this for the good of the mom-and-pop investors, who are the ones would be most affected by those proposed requirements — and for Realtor Magazine’s blog for bringing the repeal to my attention. From their description of how everything unfolded, it seems as though everyone understood that this was good to do:
When the provision was included in the small business bill, REALTORS® were among the first and firmest opponents of it, helping to ensure that Congress understood the provision was an example of over-reach that was never intended to burden mom and pop property owners. Members of Congress and President Obama got the message and, in a rare example of agreement between not only Republicans, Democrats, and independents, but also between House and Senate chambers and between the legislative and executive branches, lawmakers agreed the provision needed to come out.
Nice to know that we don’t have this provision coming up to haunt us over the next few years, isn’t it?
The issue of a residential tenant deciding to get a pet in the middle of a current lease term doesn’t come up nearly as much as you would expect, but every so often it does. In most cases we do require a pet deposit to cover any damages that the pet may do to the property.
Legal technicalities aside, the landlord has a good practical argument for retaining the whole deposit [until the end of the lease]. The increased deposit was intended to provide coverage for any damage the dog might do. The landlord may not know about any such damage until you move out, even though the dog is long gone.
The above quote is from a post on Inman News in a Q&A column that I thought was worth sharing here (click the link to see the rest of the article).
Not only is the post a good primer on the ins-and-outs of security deposits, but also on the general nature of leases and how changes to an existing lease should be handled. This is important information to understand for both landlords and tenants. Basically, lease terms can’t just be changed at the whim of one party (duh!) — while that seems like it should be taken for granted, you would be surprised how often we have to explain that in the normal course of business.
The Alliance to Conserve Old Richmond Neighborhoods (A.C.O.R.N.) has worked diligently for more than a decade to “promote the purchase and renovation of vacant and abandoned buildings in Richmond’s oldest neighborhoods.” This past Friday, ACORN announced some big news that will help them in that mission, and that’s exciting for all of Richmond. I’ll let their press release speak for itself:
Anyone receiving rental payments from either residential or commercial properties will need to review the newly-enacted small business legislation called HR5297 with their accountant and how it expands 1099 reporting requirements.
Currently, only real estate professionals that engage in property management services have to use 1099 forms to report any service provider that they pay more than $600 in a given tax year.
2011 Rule: ALL persons who receive rental payments must provide Form 1099. This affects ALL owners (both individuals and businesses) of rental properties, both residential and commercial. Thus, “mom and pop” investors and those who invest in real estate for their personal portfolios are subject to the new reporting requirement. Only aggregate annual payments of $600 or more for services (but not goods) must be reported.
2012 Rule: All businesses, including real estate businesses, self-employed individuals and independent contractors will be required to make a 1099 report of any aggregate annual payment of $600 or more to any person from whom they acquired goods and services.
Please keep in mind that I am not an accountant, so before you act on any of this information (or panic. or dismiss.) please consult with your accounting/tax professional. But when I saw this come across my desk, I thought it was important that you are aware of these new rules!
(*Warning! Sales pitch!*) And, by the way, here at Bandazian & Holden, we have dealt with these reporting requirements from when they were first enacted for real estate professionals in the property management field, and we are accustomed to handling the necessary paperwork for our clients. If you don’t feel like dealing with it on your own, let me know and come on board with us. (*End of warning. Enjoy your day!*)
We have come a long way in the fight for civil rights in this country, and we have a lot to be proud of. Unfortunately, in many states it is still absolutely legal to discriminate against someone for their sexual orientation when it comes to housing. This needs to be addressed legally, but the Realtors aren’t going to allow any of our members to get away with such practices anymore.
Read through this article at Agent Genius to see what’s changed: “Is sexual orientation discrimination in housing legal? Maybe.” It’s great news!
According to the NAR, the Code of Ethics Article 10 has been amended:
Article 10: Equal Rights Amendment Passes:
The NAR Delegate Body approved an amendment to Article 10 of the Code of Ethics to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. In a roll-call vote, more than 93 percent of the Delegate Body voted in favor of the amendment. The Delegate Body decision confirms a vote by the Board of Directors in May.
As a personal note, AG strongly supports and applauds the measure taken that Realtors’ ethics supersede federal law so that no matter if it is legal or not locally, discrimination based on sexual orientation will not be tolerated from Realtors, a measure taken by Realtors.
Huzzah for the Realtor community for standing up for what’s right and making an amendment to the Code of Ethics to declare sexual orientation discrimination officially unacceptable!
Today is a day when I’m even more proud than usual to call myself a Realtor.
St. John’s Realty has been in the property management business almost as long as we have here at Bandazian & Holden. While I haven’t seen a record of what year they started, I’ve been told that they have been doing residential property management for somewhere between 20-30 years. (FYI – B&H was founded in 1974.)
With the passing last year of the founder and principal broker owner, Danny Athans [edited 3/23/10, per information from Church Hill People’s News — link to announcement here], the future of St. John’s Realty was unsure. I am proud to announce that we at Bandazian & Holden have stepped up to take over the accounts, and all of the years of hard work by St. John’s Realty will not go to waste.
There are a lot of other details that will be forthcoming, but there is a lot of work that we are doing right now to get in touch with the property owners and tenants to alert them to the change, and to get all of the files in order.
We are very excited for the opportunity to serve this new group of property owners and tenants, and to expand our presence in Church Hill!
Two high-profile votes came before Richmond City Council last night — one for a four-story condo/apartment complex in the Springhill historic neighborhood and the other regarding the proposed public marina site beside the Rocketts Landing development.
Manchester on the James – 200 unit residential complex
This has been flying under the radar for quite some time. I remember seeing stories about this proposed development from a couple of years ago, but I haven't heard a peep about it until this vote last night.
Although, this posting from 01/18/08 on River District News explains some of the more up-to-date information that I apparently missed. The original proposal was for a 17-story high rise with "luxury condos". The revision was to a 4-story building with smaller units. The shift in focus to more of a rental use rather than owner-occupied units is what provoked the ire of nearby residents.
From an article in this morning's RTD:
Crosland, a Charlotte, N.C.-based development company, plans the
complex on a 2-acre block bounded by Cowardin, Riverside Drive, West
19th Street and Stonewall Avenue. The company plans to build and market
the complex as condominiums, but it also asked for the ability to offer
apartments to provide market flexibility. The project calls for
ground-level retail along Cowardin and a 320-space parking deck.
Despite the protests of the neighbors, City Council passed the proposal and Crosland LLC should begin construction on the 200-unit complex before too long.
Property beside Echo Harbor to be purchased — but will there be a marina?
City Council voted to back the plan for the City to purchase the Lehigh property, 1.6 acres at 3111 Water Street. The property is located immediately adjacent to the Richmond Intermediate Terminal, where the mayor has proposed the hotly contested public marina.
The Council reserved the right to allow a private developer to develop part of the site, and deliberately stayed silent on their stance regarding the proposed marina. So, the saga continues.
Last week, the Chesterfield County Board of Supervisors approved Crosland’s initial plans for the redevelopment of Cloverleaf Mall. The plans include at least 500 residential units and 200,000 SF of commercial space.
From an older report, the outparcels that have been consistently active will remain, and Kroger has signed on to build out their largest store yet in the Richmond-metro area.
This certainly sounds like it is moving along nicely, and it will help the area turn around after years of decline.
For a more thorough report of the announcement, read "Cloverleaf’s Newest ‘Place’" on Richmond.com. Here is a clip from that article that I found gives us some insight on the timeframe we are looking at for the redevelopment:
unrealistic for a project of this size to be absorbed over a period of
four years perhaps even until build out,” [James Downs, vice president for Crosland’s retail division] said. “The commercial
component, however, we see moving forward immediately.”
(For previous posts about this topic, see Something’s Moving at Cloverleaf Mall on 12-28-06)
After a long period of silence about the status of Cloverleaf Mall, there is movement. In January, Chesterfield County officials expect to have a signed purchase agreement from Crosland Inc., who will be redeveloping the site. The buyers have been involved since May 2006, and have several versions of a proposal that calls for redeveloping the aged mall into a mixed-use development.
Several plans have been proposed since Chesterfield purchased the property in 2004, all of which include a "pedestrian-friendly community that blends residential and business components". The county has said that it will be subsidizing the redevelopment, in order to make it work.
Condos, condos, condos…. If you read this blog at all, then you know my viewpoint on the ongoing fad of converting everything to condos. (and if you don’t, then just keep reading)
I don’t have a lot to say about it right now, but I wanted to point you to an article on MSNBC.com from a couple of weeks ago: "Scramble for affordable apartments" — and especially to this quote from the article about residential condo development:
In smaller markets such as Portland, Ore., Richmond, Va., and Omaha, Neb., demand has outpaced development.
I’ve been saying it for a while, but it’s nice to have something in the news backing me up on it.
People have been asking me for an update to my post from 5/2/06 ("New Hilton Hotel redevelopment of Miller & Rhoads") which outlined the redevelopment of the old Miller & Rhoads department store downtown into a sparkling new Hilton hotel, along with lots of new condo units (just what we need) and new retail space.
Anyone driving by the site on Broad Street can see that not a whole lot of progress has been made. One would think that the project has just been forgotten.
In fact, the construction has just been delayed a few months due to various factors: the recent rise in construction costs, difficulties in financing, the softening in the housing market, and tax credit issues. The developers expect to have everything in place and to begin construction in December.
And as a side note: This hotel will be a full-service upscale Hilton, but developers are not revealing which sub-brand name they will be using.
(Source: "Downtown Hilton Delayed to December" in 11/8/06 edition of Style Weekly)
As I’ve pointed out over the past several months, the residential leasing market has become slanted towards the landlords.
This is a result of several factors, of course, including:
-the insane rate of condo conversions (see also: More about Condos vs. Apts, Condos reverting to apartments, Stronger Market for Apartment Investors, & New Hilton Hotel redevelopment of Miller & Rhoads)
-the slowing of the economy (however slight it may be)
-the increased mortgage rates (see also: Residential rates highest since 2002)
The Wall Street Journal just ran an article about the shift in the residential leasing market. Here is the synopsis posted by REALTOR Magazine Online:
Bidding War May Be Moving to Rental Front
The country’s apartment sector is seeing
more bidding wars as tenants jockey for available rental units in
increasingly tight markets.
Nationwide, rent for a 1,000-square-foot
apartment has risen 3.7 percent in the last year to $1,389 a month,
says Property & Portfolio Research Inc.
One of the main reasons for climbing rents
is the reduced inventory of units, created in part by developers that
built condos or converted rental stock into for-sale units during the
home sale boom.
In the second quarter of this year, rental
vacancy rates fell to 5.3 percent from 6.2 percent in the year-earlier
period. This has produced what is known as a "landlord’s market," with
companies like AvalonBay Communities Inc. raising their asking prices
and cutting concessions for incentives like a free month’s rent.
—Wall Street Journal, Christine Haughney (10/11/06)
The Fan District Association has implemented a patrol that will be out on Friday and Saturday nights watching and listening for "out-of-control" parties. The offending addresses will be reported to the police and then recorded on their website for public access.
Report Those Party Houses to the Police!
Bill Pantele working with the Richmond Police Department’s Sector 313
is introducing a new program to identify and report properties which
cause disturbance in the neighborhood. The program know as Party House
ID is being introduced to the FDA membership to allow our members to
make sure that party houses are included in the list of address
maintained by the Richmond City Police Department. We also encourage
residents to call the police each and every time that your peace and
quietude is interrupted.
The Fall Party Patrol kicks off this weekend — we have obtained a special cellular telephone number courtesy of
Verizon Telephone’s wireless divisions.
Party Patrol (804) 317-2840
Download the Party Patrol Flier to share with your neighbors
Click Here to Fill out the Form.
See a Map of the Party House Locations
Information about the City of Richmond Noise Ordinance Section 38-1 & 2 and
Virginia State Code Sections 5.1-317 Maintaining common nuisances; penalties.
for filing complaints through the
The Party Patrol is currently running on Friday and Saturday nights from 9:00 pm to 3:00 AM
Good for them getting together to patrol and reporting the nuisances to the police!
I do, however, have an issue with the policy of publishing these "nuisance" addresses on a public access website.
*Once a property is listed, is there a procedure for getting a property removed from the list once there is no more problem?
*How will this list stigmatize an area? (i.e., if I am a property owner a half a block removed, how will this public info affect my property value?)
I see this "solution" as a problem in itself. We shall see.
It’s a short article, but it’s just reaffirming my comments about the effect of the over-building of condo units and the condo conversion trend that has been so popular. Good news for the rest of us, though!
There is "clearly an oversupply" of unsold condo units, NAHB Chief Economist David Seiders says. Vacancy rates for apartment buildings are dropping and rents are increasing, he says.
If you haven’t seen the Richmond Times-Dispatch this morning, pick it up. There are quite a few good articles related to business and real estate today.
One in particular that I want you to note is the profile on Ed Eck. This man and his company have done (and continue to do) a great service for Richmond in redeveloping the area just west of VCU, specifically along the West Main St and West Cary Street corridors. (If you are struggling to identify where I mean, think of the pastel colored buildings along West Main Street, Mulligan’s, the old El Rio Grande, Gold’s Gym, etc.)
Congratulations to Ed for winning the Andrew Asch Developer Award, from the pool of 2006 Golden Hammer Awards, from A.C.O.R.N. (Alliance to Conserve Old Richmond Neighborhoods) for "contributions to historical conservation".
Congratulations to all of this year’s winners and nominees!
As USA Today reported, the recent cooling of the real estate market nationwide is causing the the buyers of condos to dry up. Coupling that with the trend of converting multi-family housing to condos (which I see is still a hot trend in the Richmond market), there is a glut of condos available.
This is having two directly observable results:
- Rents are rising as the supply of rental units shrinks due to conversions to condos, and the demand for rentals increases as mortgage rates rise.
- Some developers are noticing the first result, and converting their condo buildings back to rental units.
While students are the not always the best tenants, there are lots of good reasons to buy investment properties in college areas.
College enrollments expected to rise by almost 1.6 million students, or
15 percent, over the next 10 years, according to the U.S. Department of
Education, and the number of graduate and professional students is
growing even faster, at almost 25 percent.
With the increase in students, there will of course be a rise in professors, administrative staff, space needed by the colleges, and supporting industries (research, retail, restaurants, etc.). While the article at REALTOR� Magazine Online -Daily News- College Town Properties Are a Smart Buy focussed on small college-dominated towns, this is a very good sign for Richmond. With Randolph Macon, VCU, UR, VUU, and the community colleges here, the areas around each of these schools will feel the impact.
Now is the time to jump in and start investing for the future growth, especially since the market has slowed down just a bit.
[Source: Dow Jones Business News, Jennifer Openshaw (07/04/2006), cited in the article mentioned above]
After 5 years of trying to get a good plan in place, the redevelopment of the Miller & Rhoads department store in downtown Richmond looks like it is finally within reach. The artist’s rendition of the redevelopment was unveiled last Wednesday, with the help of Mayor Wilder and several other City representatives.
Once completed, the
project will include a 250-room Hilton Hotel with full amenities as
well as 150-unit condominium complex. The hotel will also bring 20,000
additional square feet of retail space to the area. The condominium
units are expected to start in the low $200,000s.
See the full article at Richmond.com.
As reported in the NREI, investors interested in multi-family housing have a strong market building. The study cited focussed on the housing market slowdown in Southeastern cities, and how several factors are contributing to the favorable market for apartment owners.
The increase in mortgage rates is one factor that is slowing the residential purchase boom, and is consequently encouraging families to rent.
Another trend that I’ve seen in full force in the Richmond market is the effect of the numerous condo-conversions taking place simultaneously.
Another trend line that apartment investors should watch closely is
conversion activity, which has added strength to the rental market by
eliminating inventory. If the first quarter was any indication, the
conversion slowdown that began last October has carried into 2006: Reis
Inc. reports that roughly 30,000 apartment properties were converted
into condos during the fourth quarter of 2005, down from 50,000 in the
In effect, the slowdown of residential sales can be turned to the advantage of the wise investor. Be on the lookout for good deals on rental units!