Winston-Salem’s downtown district has come a long way in the past 15 years and housing has played a major role in that revitalization:
In his column this week in the Business Journal, Justin Catanoso looks at just how far downtown has come in the last 15 years. He tells WFDD’s Keri Brown that a big part of the city’s revitalization plan in this area revolves around more housing.
“There are 3,100 residential units downtown, most of them built since 2006. Some 700 have come online in the past year, with more planned. Rents are high; vacancy is low. People are everywhere, a significant factor in the downtown’s steady upward trajectory,” says Catanoso.
You can read Catanoso’s full column here.
As all of you (hopefully) know, PTAA has been running an annual food drive for Second Harvest Food Bank of NWNC every year for the past ten years. Each year we try to raise more food than the last, and that’s necessary because every year the number of people that Second Harvest and its partner agencies serve also grows. The High Point Enterprise ran a series of stories this week that vividly illustrate the severe hunger issues in our community. Here’s just a sample from the first story in the series:
After all, there’s a reason the city has more than 40 food pantries and/or soup kitchens working to alleviate hunger.
There’s a reason the local Salvation Army just introduced a mobile food pantry to visit the city’s seven food deserts.
There’s a reason Guilford County Schools continues looking for new ways to feed its students who aren’t getting enough to eat at home.
There’s a reason so many schools have backpack programs, in which a sponsoring organization — say, for example, the United Way or Backpack Beginnings — provides backpacks stuffed with food for students to take home and eat over the weekend.
The reason? People are hungry, and those people — the faces of hunger — are not necessarily who you think they are.
“The thing about hunger is, it’s not always the stereotype,” says Carl Vierling, a local hunger advocate who works for Open Door Ministries as the coordinator of the Community Resource Network. In that capacity, Vierling has examined High Point’s hunger crisis extensively and is trying to coordinate community efforts to effect change.
And some of the individual stories are nothing short of heartbreaking:
This past summer, Lisa Hawley took food to a woman she’d heard about who was struggling to feed her three high school-aged sons. Hawley introduced herself and said to the woman, “I’ve brought you some food — do you need help?”
“I do,” the woman replied, “but do you see those seven children walking down the street? There’s not one thing to eat in their house. You need to give them that food.”
Hawley tears up as she tells the story.
“That broke my heart,” she says. “She needed help, but she wanted to give the food to someone else who needed it more.”
On Monday, November 24 we will be dropping off a check for a little over $6,500 at Second Harvest. This is a portion of the online donations we’ve received as part of our Food Drive, but please don’t take this to mean that the drive is over. Our 2014 drive doesn’t end until the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve and we ring in 2015. We’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of our members who have so enthusiastically participated to this point and to urge you to keep up the good work.
Here’s a link to the food drive page just in case you need it.
If you’d like to read the rest of the Enterprise stories you can find them here:
A Connecticut-based private investment group has bought the 144-unit Sedgefield Apartments complex in Winston-Salem for $9.8 million…
Berkshire Property Advisors had owned the complex, at 4755 Country Club Road, since January 2008, when the real estate investment management company bought it for $8 million, deeds show.
The Fair Housing Project, a unit of Legal Aid of North Carolina, has been awarded a HUD Private Enforcement Initiative (PEI) grant of $325,000 a year for three years. According to a release from Legal Aid, “PEI grants fund nonprofit organizations that conduct testing and enforcement activities to prevent or eliminate discriminatory housing practices.”
We’ve heard from one source that these funds are already being used to ramp up the number of Fair Housing ‘shops’ in the Triangle and Triad areas. We’ve also heard that testers might be telling the site teams at the end of the tour that they’ve “passed” even though that tester has not yet compared notes with any other tester for the property. That could be a problem if the reports don’t match up.
We should stress that these are not formal reports or complaints that we’ve received – they are just the first hint that we’ve had that the Fair Housing Project inspections have increased. The purpose here is simply to inform you that your site teams may see an increase in Fair Housing ‘shops’ and that you might want to consider reinforcing the Fair Housing training that you already conduct.
Every year the National Apartment Association’s Annual Education Conference is the biggest apartment industry event in the country. In 2014 over 8,000 people attended the conference in Denver, CO to hear keynote speakers like Michael J. Fox, to attend any of the dozens of educational sessions, and to visit a trade show floor that featured almost a thousand top-notch vendors. On June 24-27, 2015 the conference will be held in Las Vegas and it’s expected to be the biggest and best yet.
To help make the conference as “do-able” as possible for our members, PTAA has arranged a huge discount on registrations for our members. If you register through us your registration rate will be $575 which is a $150 savings over what it would cost you to register on your own. That’s a savings of over 20%!
Also, if you’re a member of another NAA affiliate in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee or Kentucky you should check with your local affiliate to see if they are offering the discount. If not you’re more than welcome to register through us as well. If you’re not a member of any affiliate or of NAA directly you can still get $150 off the non-member rate.
We’re in the process of setting up our registration system now and should be live in the next week or so. In the meantime we are taking pre-registrations. Simply click here to get a PDF version of our registration form, fill it out and email it to Jon Lowder. Once our registration system is live we’ll get you entered and send you your confirmation number(s) so that you can arrange your housing whenever you’re ready.
From an AP report on new home construction statistics for October, 2014:
Builders started construction at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.009 million last month, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday. That was a drop of 2.8 percent from September when construction had jumped 7.8 percent to 1.038 million.
The weakness stemmed from a 15.4 percent plunge in apartment construction, a category that tends to have big swings from month to month. Construction of single-family homes was up 4.2 percent, the third gain in the past four months…
While overall construction was down in October, analysts said the weakness was confined to apartment building, which had seen a huge increase in September.
PTAA member – and past PTAA board member – Rebecca Rosario has an article on NAA’s blog titled Four Ways to Keep Residents Coming Back for More:
When potential residents make the effort to call, email, and spend time at searching for a place to call home, most apartment community staffs are on their best behavior, trying to make the positive first impression in hopes to “woo” the prospect into a lease signing, rent paying member of the community. Mutual trust is built, the future looks bright, and hopes are high for a wonderful relationship. Unfortunately, after the lease is signed, the wooing sometimes stops. As a result, down the road the resident gives notice, serves the office with papers, and the sad fact is they want to end the lease agreement. Similar to a divorce, ending the relationship can be a painful, expensive process. You ask yourself, where did I go wrong?
Proactive property managers, and savvy staff know how to not only take care of the obligatory tasks of handling resident(s) needs, they are remarkably good at keeping them (residents) coming back for more and encouraging their friends and coworkers to do the same, creating new resident referrals. -
Visit the blog to see Rebecca’s four ways to keep your residents coming back for more.