MHN’s October 2020 Must-Reads

Catch up on our most important stories, interviews and analyses for last month.

Last month, we continued to keep an eye on how many residents were able to make partial or full rent payments, with NMHC reporting rent collections hit 79.4 percent as of Oct. 6. That’s a 3 percent increase from the same interval in September when 76.4 percent of renters had made payments. However, in less positive news, the following day the Trump administration announced that negotiations over the latest proposed stimulus bill have been halted until after the election. The news came as a blow to multifamily and renter advocacy groups, which had been urging for additional federal rent relief. To understand what the presidential election means for the multifamily sector, we sat down with industry experts to discuss the issues that are top of mind for apartment executives.

October was also a month full of conference coverage. The industry is paying close attention to senior housing and student housing, the more at-risk multifamily sectors, as the occupancy rate for senior housing fell to a record low. Between Oct. 6 and 8, we attended the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care Fall 2020 conference, where panelists talked, among other topics, about how the pandemic has already left an enormous mark on the industry. Later in the month, we attended the NMHC/InterFace Student Housing conference, where experts discussed the importance of communication, flexibility and strong internet connectivity in filling beds during the pandemic, as well as an array of other interesting topics.

As the year slowly draws to a close, investment activity picked up in October, especially for the single-family segment. The most significant deals included Pretium’s $2.4 billion acquisition of Front Yard Residential Corp. and QuadReal Property Group’s purchase of a 50 percent interest in CA Ventures’ student housing business. Early in the month, Nuveen Real Estate announced plans to invest up to $400 million in a new single-family rental startup called Sparrow, just two weeks before Hines launched Willowick Residential, a multifamily property management arm.

Here are MHN’s must-reads for last month:

10 Fastest-Growing Multifamily Property Management Companies of 2020

The Top 10 Fastest-Growing Multifamily Property Management Companies of 2020 utilized self-reported data for all firms.

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The Multifamily Mystery: Q&A With Freddie Mac’s Steve Guggenmos

The GSE’s vice president of research and modeling talks about the macroeconomy, COVID-19 and where the rental sector is heading.

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How Multifamily Rents Stand Up to Inflation

A study from Middleburg Communities takes a closer look at the correlation between rental prices and economic pressures.

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U.S. Multifamily Starts Fall 16% in September

Soaring lumber prices have helped constrain multifamily development, according to a new report on the housing market by Marcus & Millichap.

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Podcast: What to Know About California’s Prop. 21

California Apartment Association CEO Tom Bannon talks about the potential impact on the state’s rental housing market if the rent control-related ballot measure passes on Nov. 3.

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Suburban Markets Shine Amid Pandemic

NMHC’s Quarterly Survey of Apartment Market Conditions showed a modest rebound from impacts of COVID-19, though its Index of Market Tightness displayed weakness.

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COVID-19’s Impact on Student Housing Under Review: Q&A

“Since the start of the pandemic, all data points for student housing have been positive,” says Cushman & Wakefield’s Travis Prince.

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Turning Historic Factories into Apartment Projects

Benjamin Orgel of Tennessee’s Tower Ventures shared insights on adaptive reuse during the CREate 360 virtual conference held by SIOR.

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