by Stephen Ursery
The National Association of Real Estate Editors’ (NAREE) 47th Annual Conference continued last night and today in downtown Atlanta, with attendees getting a chance to hear about the history of the Atlanta skyline, tour Atlantic Station and attend educational sessions on topics ranging from real estate radio shows to luxury housing.
Here are five quick blurbs about some of the sights and sounds of the past 24 hours:
#1 Up from the Ashes. On Wednesday night, NAREE revelers enjoyed drinks, appetizers and a view of thunderstorms over the city in a model condo on the 26th floor of the W Hotel & Residences in downtown Atlanta. Scott Trubey, commercial real estate reporter at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, graciously provided the group the backstory on the building, which was foreclosed on in 2010. The problems were related to a complicated ownership dispute and the failure of Silverton Bank. Trubey told the crowd that the property is doing well today. “Atlanta’s symbol is the phoenix, as in rising from the ashes,” he said.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Scott Trubey speaks during the W Hotel & Residences Tour.
#2 This Party Isn’t Over. The recovering single-family housing market doesn’t “mean the fun is over for the multifamily industry,” said Mark Obrinksy of the National Multi Housing Council during Thursday morning’s “Multifamily Midyear Forecast” session.
The number of young adults still living with their parents is still quite high, Orbinsky added, and as the labor market improves and they leave home, apartment demand will increase.
Greg Willett of MPF Research pinpointed Washington D.C. as one market that is the subject of strong overbuilding concerns within the industry, but he said most of the product coming online appears to be well-placed.
On the subject of micro apartments in Texas, Willett said a developer proposing a building with those units “would just be laughed at.” Everything is indeed bigger in Texas.
#3 Big Year for Hotels. 2014 is shaping up to be one of the best years for the hotel industry in a while, according to Mark Woodworth of PKF Hospitality Research. Woodworth made his remarks during Thursday’s “Mid-Year Hotel Outlook” session.
The top U.S. markets for hotel revenue growth are Houston; Newark, N.J.; Oakland, Calif.; Chicago; and Oahu, Hawaii. Memphis is experiencing the lowest revenue growth of major U.S. cities, according to Woodworth.
Wherever he is these days, Elvis is surely weeping.
#4 Radio Talkers Talk. “Make a bold statement and then support that.” That’s Michael Bull’s advice for the guests on his weekly “Commercial Real Estate Show” radio program – and that’s how he urged attendees of Wednesday’s “Behind the Mic” lunchtime session to handle any radio or television appearances they might make.
Bull, the president of Bull Realty, and Ilyce Glink, host of the residential real estate-focused “Ilyce Glink Show,” discussed their broadcasting careers at the session.
Bull said he seeks a diversity of commercial real estate perspectives on his show, from analysts to in-the-trenches brokers.
Glink noted that industry figures can create their own podcasts fairly easily by using online services such as Blog Talk Radio or by purchasing their own hardware for a fairly cheap price. “A good digital recorder costs $100,” she said.
#5 High-Class Living. “The Boom in Luxe Housing” panel drew a lively crowd on Thursday morning. Kofi Natei Nartey of The Agency of Beverly Hills said that pocket listings for luxury homes are on the rise. “Creating mystique is a sales strategy,” he said.
Accountants of high-net-worth entertainers also are urging their clients to invest in luxury real estate, Nartey said.