Chapel Hill Investment Group Buys Two Triad Properties

Prudent Growth Partners, based in Chapel Hill, has purchased two apartment communities in the Triad in the last month, one in Greensboro and one in Reidsville. From the Triad Business Journal:

Prudent Growth Partners has bought the Cambridge on Elm apartment complex in Greensboro for $1.26 million…

The property, which consists of 24 two-bedroom units and 12 one-bedroom units, is 95 percent occupied…

The acquisition is the second in two weeks in the Triad for Prudent, who purchased the Oakmont Apartments in Reidsville for $2.32 million on June 15.

 

Forsyth County Housing Still Considered Affordable

A recent RealtyTrac report finds that housing in Forsyth County is still affordable. From the Winston-Salem Journal:

RealtyTrac, a national real-estate research company, said average homeowners in Forsyth needed to put 22.9 percent of their monthly household wages toward their mortgage during the first quarter. The data is available only by county.

The affordability range was based on a wage of $883 a week for an $111,994 house with a 3 percent mortgage interest rate. Historically, the average homeowner spent 25.6 percent of household wages for the mortgage.

RealtyTrac has maintained a “buy” recommendation for the Forsyth housing market, based on a $1,059 monthly rent-to-own payment requiring nearly 30 percent of the average household income.

Here are numbers for other urban counties in the state:

For Guilford County, the RealtyTrac report determined 24.2 percent of weekly wages was required to buy a $144,500 home, the median sales price in the market.

For Mecklenburg County, the report determined 25.5 percent of weekly wages was required for a $208,000 home, the median sales price in the market.

For Mecklenburg County, the report determined 25.5 percent of weekly wages was required for a $208,000 home, the median sales price in the market.

HAWS to Request City Funds for Acquisition of Property

Triad City Beat has an article about the Housing Authority of Winston-Salem’s (HAWS) efforts to buy a property near its Cleveland Avenue Homes community:

The Housing Authority of Winston-Salem plans to request financial assistance from the city to pay for the acquisition of a blighted complex known as New Hope Manor Apartments that is wedged between Cleveland Avenue Homes and Fairview Park — potentially a key aspect of an ambitious plan to transform the neighborhood.

The anticipated request comes on the heels of a unanimous vote by city council on June 20 to the join the housing authority as a co-applicant for a federal Choice Neighborhoods grant as part of an ambitious plan to transform the area surrounding the Cleveland Avenue Homes public-housing community.

The city’s participation includes a pledge of $4.5 million to pay for business façade improvements, neighborhood broadband, a revolving loan for businesses, streetscaping and land for new parks and other public spaces in the area.

HAWS representatives have talked to the lender on the property and learned that the lender is willing to dispose of the property at a significant loss. They are concerned that it will attract a low-ball investor who will put minimal effort into revitalizing the community.

Ritchie Brooks, Winston-Salem’s director of community and business development, wrote in a memo that “HAWS believes this could provide an appealing opportunity for an absentee investor to purchase the property, do some minimal rehab, and then continue to operate the property as untenable multifamily housing, perpetuating the blight and inhibiting the development of the surrounding area.” As a result HAWS is asking the city for $1.7 million to help “acquire, demolish, abate, rehab and operate the property in a sustainable manner.”

Rent Increases Cool Off

From The Wall Street Journal:

Increases in apartment rents slowed this spring, typically the period when landlords drive the hardest bargains, suggesting the once-booming market is beginning to cool.

Rents increased by 4% in the second quarter over the same time last year, according to real-estate researcher Reis Inc. That was less than the 5% year-over-year growth in the fourth quarter of last year, which marked the biggest jump in rents since the dot-com boom in the early 2000s.

Another research firm, Axiometrics Inc., showed an even sharper slowdown in year-over-year rent growth, to 3.7% in the second quarter from 5.1% in the same period last year.

But, rents are still rising faster than historical averages:

While overall rent growth is cooling and some developers are struggling to get the rents they anticipated, the market remains historically strong. Rents are still rising well above the long-term average of about 3% a year…

More than 127,000 new apartments were filled in the second quarter, easily exceeding the 67,550 units that were built during the period, according to MPF.

A Different On Site Living Experience

How’s this for a different kind of on site living experience?

In the early to mid twentieth century, the majority of the city’s libraries had live-in superintendents. Like the superintendents who still live in many of the city’s residential buildings, these caretakers both worked and lived in the buildings for which they were responsible. This meant that for decades, behind the stacks, meals were cooked, baths and showers were taken, and bedtime stories were read. And yes, families living in the city’s libraries typically did have access to the stacks at night—an added bonus if they happened to need a new bedtime book after hours…

The family, who were joined by Rose Mary’s younger brother Terrence in 1945, lived in the library until Patrick Thornberry retired as the building’s superintendent in 1967. Their home was in what the library now refers to as the “closed stack” (a locked stack reserved for rare books). While the closed stack is currently sealed off to daylight to protect its rare contents, when the Thornberrys lived in the library, it was a light-filled and vibrant space. But the family was by no means confined to their apartment. They also enjoyed a penthouse-level garden and after hours, access to the library’s stacks and large reference rooms too.

 

Apartments in Whitaker Park

The redeveloper of Whitaker Park, the former RJ Reynolds manufacturing campus in north Winston-Salem, has indicated that an out of town developer is potentially building 185 to 210 apartment units. From the Triad Business Journal:

Construction could start by the late first quarter or early second quarter of 2017, Leak said.

“This is a mixed-use project that we are going to develop so the hope is that there are going to be a lot of jobs created by companies in other parts of that park and so some of them might want to live approximate to where they work,” Leak said.

He added that there is an opportunity for the developer to market the units to Wake Forest University basketball and football fans who come into town for the games.

Inspections Bill Headed to Governor

From the desk of Apartment Association of North Carolina Executive Director Will Brownlee comes news of a significant legislative victory for the apartment industry in North Carolina:

Thrilled to report that S326 HAS PASSSED THE SENATE this afternoon by a 42-1 vote and is being sent to the Governor for his signature.  When signed, it is set to become law effective January 1, 2017.

This is an enormous victory for the NC apartment industry, a culmination of nearly 5 years of effort – enacting laws that will help protect our industry from invasive and overreaching inspection and registration schemes and restore a reasonable balance between the interests of landlords and cities/counties moving forward.  Many thanks to those of you who reached out to your Representatives and Senators this week;  based on reports received from Colleen and her team, several reported back that they had heard from you, and that your information had a strong impact on the final outcome.

On that note, AANC and our industry owes a huge thank you to AANC Legislative Counsel Colleen Kochanek and her team, as well as industry allies such as the NC Association of Realtors, for their tireless and creative efforts in securing necessary stakeholders and finding ways to resurrect the original H530 bill in the closing week of the legislative session and have it reborn as the now-passed S326.

 

We’ll have more about what this means in follow up posts.

Coming Soon: A Livery in Camel City

This development near BB&T Ballpark in Winston-Salem will surely be one of the more unique adaptive reuses we see in the Piedmont Triad in the foreseeable future:

A Lewisville developer is breathing new life into a downtown Winston-Salem apartment complex by refashioning it as “The Livery.”

The idea behind the 27-unit complex at 648 Holly Ave. was to create the appearance the building was a “high-end horse barn” that’s been renovated into apartments, said Jeff Zenger, president of Lisha Construction and Solomon Development…

Zenger bought 648 Holly Ave. for $500,000, and plans to invest at least $1 million to completely renovate the building inside and out, along with a carriage house on the property…

The complex’s one-bedroom units are about 535 square feet and are being reworked with new central air and heat along with amenities such as granite countertops and stainless steel appliances…

Pre-leasing for the building has now begun, with the first units expected to be ready by Aug. 1 and rent for around $800.

You can see a rendering of the project here.

NAA Statement on “How Housing Matters” Study

Following is a statement from Doug Culkin, CAE, President and CEO of the National Apartment Association, on the MacArthur Foundation’s 2016 “How Housing Matters” survey:

“With four of five Americans believing housing affordability continues to be a problem, this study underscores the need for political leadership and results‐driven policies to meet the demand for apartment housing.

America’s affordability problem is growing. The supply of rental apartments can’t meet the demand – between 300,000 to 400,000 apartments must be built annually to keep pace, but only an average of 208,000 were built between 2011 and 2015.

Compounding this challenge is stagnancy in incomes. Median rental household income is almost unchanged from 35 years ago on an inflation‐adjusted basis.

Finally, costly and cumbersome regulations at all levels of government create barriers to the development of new rental housing and ultimately drive rents above what many families can afford.

We commend the MacArthur Foundation for reinforcing that Americans want lawmakers to act now to address our nation’s housing affordability challenges.

Lawmakers must recognize that the most viable solution requires a strong partnership between government and the private sector. The National Apartment Association continues to work to enable our members to provide apartment homes that meet the needs of all Americans.”

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The National Apartment Association (NAA), America’s leading voice for the apartment housing industry, provides its members with the best range of strategic, educational, operational, networking and advocacy resources they need to learn, to lead and to succeed. As a federation of nearly 170 state and local affiliates, NAA encompasses over 72,000 members representing more than 8.4 million apartment homes globally. NAA’s purpose is to enable every single one of its members to fulfill his or her professional goals with great competence, speed and the highest standards of ethics. To learn more, visit www.naahq.org.

Rent Jon for a Good Cause – Limited Time Offer

This year PTAA’s executive director Jon Lowder is once again trying to raise money for our annual summer food drive, and if you’re willing to donate to Second Harvest Food Bank of NWNC you can rent his time for any number of reasons. Even better, if you make the donation before June 30 then your money will be automatically matched dollar-for-dollar by an anonymous donor at Second Harvest, so it’s doubled! Not sure what you can do with his time? Well, here’s what he’s written to give you some ideas (you can find full details here):

Last year I ventured to raise money for Second Harvest Food Bank of NWNC by doing something called Jon’s Pentathlon of Pain. This year I’m focusing on raising funds in the month of June because Second Harvest has a program that matches every dollar donated until June 30.That means if you donate $10 it magically turns into $20.

So here’s how it’s going to work: if you have a challenge, task, stunt that you want me to do then send me a description of what you want me to do (see instructions below), and how much you’re willing to donate to Second Harvest to have me do it. Because time is short the project/stunt doesn’t have to be completed in June, but the donation does have to be made and we can arrange for it to be done later.

I reserve the right to not accept any challenge or project – I’m not getting piercings or tattoos folks – but I listen to any offer.

Here are some ideas:

  • Hire me for a day (I’m sure we can figure out something useful I can do)
  • A writing project
  • A podcast
  • An embarrassing video (here’s an example from last year)
  • Wear your company’s schwag (hat, shirt, etc.) for a day

Just use your imagination. To bid just send me an email or leave a comment on the Jon’s Challenge Facebook page.

Want to just make a straight donation? You can do it through my office’s food drive donation page here and just shoot me a message to let me know how much you donated.

Let’s get busy and help feed the hungry in our community!