Up Close with Chris Parr

In every issue of the Triad Business Journal there’s a Q&A with a local business executive and a couple of weeks ago they featured PTAA member Chris Parr:

You have two apartment projects planned in Kernersville right across the street from one another. Why the proximity? Because somebody else would buy it. They would see what I saw in it, and just know that it was a great location and has the lowest vacancy rate in the Triad. So I outsmarted them; I bought both of them. That way I didn’t have anybody messing with me…

Why not contract with another company for property management? I don’t think I’d be able to deal with an apartment management company managing my stuff, never knowing who’s going to be in the office or in control of expenses. After I built my first complex, I threw myself into apartment management quickly, which was definitely a learning curve. Property management, for the most part, is a good, stable business, and that was one of the key reasons I got into it. I wanted residual income.

What kind of lessons were there on that learning curve? There have been times when I shook my head thinking, ‘this is crazy.’ When the fire alarm rings in the middle of night, those calls will come to me. I just love it because it’s chaotic, and it’s unique; you meet so many different people. It’s really been enlightening for me, and it’s opened my eyes to a lot of different types of people and how people live and act…

Do you think the Triad’s apartment market is approaching being overbuilt? We’re possibly getting near the peak. But each submarket is different. Kernersville needs apartments; Clemmons is a prime location. The apartment market is always going to be there. We’re actually seeing a lot of older people coming to rent now; we’re seeing this huge shift in people who are preferring to rent rather than own.