Supply Shortage Continues in Multifamily. Apartment vacacny lowest in 11 years.

From WSJ Developments-

Little new apartment construction and surging demand has created a shortfall of 2.5 million units, the largest the nation has seen in more than a half-century, according to research from Nareit, a trade group for real-estate investment trusts.

As we’ve reported, apartment landlords are seeing vacancy rates decline as more Americans rent by choice or necessity. In the fourth quarter, apartment vacancy fell to the lowest rate since late 2001, with the national rate dropping to 5.2% from 6.6% a year earlier, according to Reis Inc. The vacancy rate had risen as high as 8% in 2009.

Pent-up demand could pull that rate even lower. According to Nareit, the normal rate of household formation is about 1.2% annually. But, with the sour economy in the last four years, the rate plunged to about 0.5%, as people delayed moving out and opted to live with roommates and parents longer. This has created an unmet demand of about 2 million households, “about three times what it has been in previous business cycles,”… See the whole article here

The #Multifamily Asset Twilight Zone: In default but payments still being made. Opportunity or? Via @rshall03

A common theme adopted by the industry is that lenders continue to delay action on distressed assets for as long as possible.

The fact is that this scenario is borrower-specific. If a borrower is acting in good faith, the lender may allow the asset to continue operating, resulting in a commercial property “Twilight Zone.”

The Twilight Zone is made up of properties on which loans have defaulted or in which default is likely imminent, but the borrower is still willing to provide all available cash flow to the lender, even if it is not enough to cover the payments. The lender agrees to accept net rents and, in turn, keeps the building operational, albeit in a limbo period.

When the lender does finally pull the plug value opportunities can Continue reading The #Multifamily Asset Twilight Zone: In default but payments still being made. Opportunity or? Via @rshall03

Is Gen Y your target demographic for Multifamily? Here’s why

Gen Y—those between the ages of 16 to 33—represents about 25 percent of the population in the country and is now larger than the baby boomer generation, which is shrinking

The Gen Y group keeps getting larger for a number of reasons, including the fact that immigrants to the United States typically come as young adults—and rent. This group is expected to continue to expand over the next 15 years.

Through 2017, she adds, there are going to be more than 4.3 million people turning 22 each year (though analysts used to use 18 as the age people left home, young people have delayed forming new households). This number is expected to remain above 4 million until 2025. And, of course, fewer people looking to purchase a home also bodes well for the multi-housing industry.

Gen Y in line for multifamily

See the whole article at: Gen Y for Multifamily on MHN Online

Find the freight trains in your life and get on them instead of in front of them.- Barry Sternlicht Video via @Michael_MBA

Great advice from Barry Sternlicht plus much, much more on real estate, investment, capital, leadership, opportunity, Europe, China while speaking at the Schack real estate conference. He is one very smart guy while being personable and humble, a  rare but valuable combination. Reminds me a bit of my virtual mentor Tom Barrack, and not just because of the haircut! Barry even mentions wanting to learn how to surf, something Tom could definitely help with.

Here’s the link to the video: Barry Sternlicht at Schack RE Conference For more great video from the conference Continue reading Find the freight trains in your life and get on them instead of in front of them.- Barry Sternlicht Video via @Michael_MBA

Portland unemployment drops to lowest in 3 yrs. Good for #Multifamily Via @hfo_apt_brokers

The Oregonian reports data from the state employment department about the Portland-area’s unemployment level falling to 8.6 percent, its lowest in three years.

Meanwhile, most people are still unaware of a report issued last month by the Oregon Employment Department forecasting an 18 percent increase in employment statewide in the coming decade. See the post here: http://bit.ly/yxMb1y

Thanks to Greg Frick at HFO in PDX

Multifamily rental construction definitely the brightest sector in housing market.

See the Housing Wire piece here:

Seattle Apartment Building Investment Cycle peaking or just taking a breather?

In his Q4 report on the Seattle multifamily market ARA’s Jim Claeys says:

Vacancies and Concessions UP

Absorption and Rents DOWN

New Construction Pipeline UP 140% from year ago

Also Home and Condo Sales UP 41, 70% respectively

Sounds kind of like the cycle is moving to the next phase doesn’t it? See the whole article here: This may be a good time for developers to reassess their projections

FHA Streamlines Approvals on Multifamily loans less than $25M/250 units.

“It’s a huge help,” says Jonathan Camps, managing director of production for Washington, D.C.-based Love Funding.

In the past, any loan of at least $15 million, or any deal of more than 150 units, had to go through the FHA’s National Loan Committee. That threshold has been dialed up to $25 million, or 250 units.

What’s more, any existing FHA-insured loan looking to refinance through the Sec. 223(f) program no longer needs to go through either the regional or the national loan committee.

Good news indeed! See the whole article here: FHA Streamlines Multifamily Loan Approvals

Top 10 Tips for Acquiring Distressed Multifamily Properties

Nice article in MHN Online, good tips and reminders. There are still plenty of properties worth less than the debt, and there are more foreclosures to come. Most of the distressed multifamily properties are B, C and D class properties. These properties can provide great returns with cap rates from 8 percent to 12 percent on existing income, and in most cases have plenty of vacancy for even more upside.

My top two that apply to all properties distressed or otherwise:

Good management: Distressed B, C and D properties require experienced and diligent asset and property management. Your management team should be top notch. Your turnaround plan should be realistic and properly implemented.

Talented leasing staff: Your leasing team should be properly motivated and for lease marketing extremely thorough. You want a well-thought-out, multi-disciplined lease up plan to stabilize properties in this cycle.

See the article here: http://bit.ly/xW6fZp

Hoisington Quarterly Review and Outlook “Recession in 2012”.

Housington Investment Management runs about $4B in fixed income institutional money so they pay very close attention to the economy, government as well as fiscal and monetary policy. In fact Dr. Lacy Hunt, co-author of the report, is one of Mauldin’s most highly regarded economists. Here’s the exec sum (see the whole article at http://bit.ly/wM9DIY):

High Debt Leads to Recession

As the U.S. economy enters 2012, the gross government debt to GDP ratio stands near 100% (Chart 1). Nominal GDP in the fourth quarter was an estimated $15.3 trillion, approximately equal to debt outstanding by the federal government. In an exhaustive historical study of high debt level economies around the world, (National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper No. 15639 of January 2010, Growth in the Time of Debt), Professors Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart [Again with those two!] econometrically demonstrated that when a country’s gross government debt rises above 90% of GDP, “the median growth rates fall by one percent, and Continue reading Hoisington Quarterly Review and Outlook “Recession in 2012”.