Photography and text by Nicole Goodness, Contributing Editor
626 Dekalb, a Greystar-managed community in Atlanta, bridges the old with the new by nestling a modern aesthetic within the city’s Old Fourth Ward historical district. The location is just enough of a buffer from the heart of the city to lend the feel of a resident’s own personal oasis, while maintaining a close proximity to popular activities in the core of the diverse city center.
Residents enjoy a 24-hour fitness center with a yoga room and an expansive courtyard that leads to a crescent-shaped pool and 24/7 business center. Among the various amenities 626 has to offer, it’s the 5th floor that makes it a unique place to call home. A theater room with reclining chairs and stadium seating, in addition to a game room, are major draws.
Most impressive is the spacious Emerald Lounge, a large bright room with a flat-screen TV, oversized couch and large, modern kitchen that remains stocked with refreshments and coffee. From the living area, a balcony features sweeping views of the city’s skyline. The property holds monthly community events within the Emerald Lounge for residents and live-in staff members to meet and greet each other.
With everything 626 has to offer, it’s the staff that anchors the resident experience. This relatively small property of 204 units offers a strong sense of family and community. It’s imperative to staff that each resident feels recognized as more than just an apartment number. “If you don’t know the names of each and every resident, you need to stop leasing apartments,” says Jerrico Webster, the community’s assistant manager. Exceptional customer service has made word-of-mouth one of the community’s most effective marketing strategies.
Meeting the community needs is something in which the staff at 626 takes pride. Staff and residents regularly participate in local food drives, clothing donations and community cleanup days.
The slow rental market in the current economy has resulted in reduced monthly rates. “We offer the same quality of product, but you’re getting it for a lower dollar,” Webster says. “At the moment, we are trying not to make the owner lose money but rather maintain and make a profit.” The staff at 626 also negotiates with vendors to get the lowest bids possible, while retaining the same quality residents expect.
While it’s difficult to keep resident retention at an acceptable level, 626 staff has found that being receptive to resident issues is the best strategy. With rent costs equal to the mortgage on a house—$800-$1,300 per month—it’s imperative to hear any complaints a resident may have.
Even with 10 new properties moving to the vicinity, the 626 staff remains confident that what they offer residents can’t be beat. The building is tucked away in a corner of the city’s historic district, which provides residents just enough space from city life to feel at home. After a day at work or a night on the town, residents can leave the bustle behind and come home to a quiet, secluded neighborhood.
The 204-unit 626 Dekalb, located in Atlanta’s historic Old Fourth Ward district, prides itself on its customer service, in addition to community events in which staff and residents partake. The Greystar-managed
community is currently offering
17 different floor plans—all recently upgraded—with monthly rents
ranging from $800 to $1,300.