Enter your email address for weekly access to top multifamily blogs!

Multifamily Blogs

This is some blog description about this site

Multifamily Innovation Truly Flourishes When Industry Members Collaborate

In many ways, the multifamily industry is built on competition. In the battle to sign new residents and get current ones to renew their leases, properties strive to have the best common-area amenities, the most appealing in-unit finishes, the best customer service and the most attractive move-in offers in their competitive set. But when it comes to pushing the industry forward and developing innovations that optimize the living experience and boost an operator’s bottom line, those who work in multifamily should be ready to collaborate as much as possible. I’m reminded of the phrase “a rising tide lifts all boats.” When industry members work together to problem solve, share expertise and scale new solutions, they create an environment in which all residents are better served and all operators have a chance to bring in more revenue. Here are three important ways industry members can collaborate: 1) PropTech venture funds. A good example of this is Real Estate Technology Ventures’ Fund I, which raised $108 million from leading owners and operators like Aimco, Boardwalk, Cortland, Essex, GID, MidAmerica, Starwood Capital Group and UDR. The fund and others like it provide capital to supplier partners with emerging technologies, which are then tested in the investors’ portfolios. Ideally, the feedback from the owner/operators and the lessons learned by deploying the solutions in the real world enables supplier partners to produce solutions ready for widespread deployment across the industry. 2) Create technological solutions that integrate easily. Multifamily supplier partners need to place a real emphasis on creating technologies and solutions t......
Continue reading
1046 Hits
0 Comments

The Three Things that Can Hamper Multifamily Innovation

The apartment industry has long been painted as one that’s afraid of change and reluctant to embrace new ways of doing things. That may have been true in the past, but when I look at multifamily today and the MICA session lineup, I see an industry brimming with ingenuity and an entrepreneurial spirit. Across the country, investors, operators and supplier partners are exploring a wide array of innovations to improve the resident experience and increase revenue. They’re implementing smart-home solutions, short-term rentals, self-guided tours, hotel-like resident services and increasingly sophisticated fitness amenities, to name just a few examples. But in looking at the industry, I do see three factors in play that often inhibit multifamily innovation and growth. Those factors are: 1) Government policy. I’m not here to make grand pronouncements about government being anti-business. However, from time to time, local, state and federal laws can – albeit unintentionally – stifle innovation. Take the growing number of rent-control laws, for example. When jurisdictions put a cap on rent, that limits the financial incentive to reinvest in and modernize portfolios. Similarly, some apartment communities may be reluctant to incorporate short-term rentals because the laws in their area may subject them to expensive hospitality taxes. It’s important for multifamily owners and operators, whether on their own or through an association, to speak up when laws and policies work against their interests and hamper their ability to innovate at their properties.  2) The lack of integration among technological solutions. It has to be easier to integrate individual multifamily technologies into any other technology ......
Continue reading
1178 Hits
0 Comments

Technology Can Play Nice with Each Other

Technology Can Play Nice with Each Other
To keep their properties running smoothly and to provide residents with the services they desire, apartment operators today use a variety of different technology solutions.Property management software. Revenue management software. Package locker systems. Smart-home technology. The list goes on and on and continues to grow.With all of these systems at work, it's more important than ever that technology providers enable their solutions to integrate and "talk" with each other. The apartment industry hasn't exactly been known for this over the years, but the time has arrived for suppliers to play nice. Doing so can make day-to-day life so much easier for both operators and their residents. Quick Primer on API You may have heard of the acronym API. It stands for "Application Programming Interface."But how about something a little easier to understand: Long story short, when a solution has an API, it allows the solution's servers to communicate openly and freely with another solution's servers. In other words, the two technologies can exchange information back and forth and in real-time. It's critical that multifamily vendors build their solutions with APIs. Doing so not only allows two different technologies to communicate, it also enables solutions like mobile apps to provide both operators and residents with a single interface to access the multiple solutions supporting a community.   Mobile Deep Linking Similarly, you may be familiar with the phrase "deep linking" within mobile apps. When an API is not available, deep links bridge the gap between apps working together in tandem, using a......
Continue reading
265 Hits
0 Comments

Who Will Lead the Platform Revolution In Multifamily?

NMHC OpTech ConferenceDuring the NMHC OpTech conference this past week, Phil Simon spoke about the “Age of the Platform”, which essentially means businesses building applications on top of other businesses.  The most well-known examples of this platform concept are creating apps on Facebook or the iPhone.  In these cases, Facebook and Apple become the “platform” by which other companies develop add-on services to offer to their customers. From a multifamily perspective, there are two ways to participate in a platform concept:  Either create services on another platform, such as develop your own Facebook app, or become a platform yourself, where businesses create services on your own architecture.  Today, I want to cover the latter, as I really think that is the more interesting of the two right now.  I think the most logical, and potentially evolutionary-inducing option is for property management software to be that option.  In this way, other companies should easily be able to integrate their service with the base property management software without duplicate entry, exporting/importing issues, and other walls between the data.  So for example, a company could develop a package-tracking “app” that works seamlessly within the property management software environment and leverages standardized data, such as resident lists, rather than having it be a separate entity entirely which has to recreate these standard elements. In 2005, my former company was attempting to implement a social media based resident portal, and we got the painful feedback that our service would simply not be useful unless we were integrated with the major p......
Continue reading
5605 Hits
11 Comments