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THE HOUSTON APARTMENT ASSOCIATION MAGAZINE
ABODE September 2017
MAINTENANCE Maintenance & Government Legislative issues to remember in property maintenance.
We See You at the Bowling Tournament, Go-Getter Happy Hour and much more!
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CONTENTS September 2017
ON THE COVER 36 Maintenance Matters – Our maintenance teams are an integral part of the success of our apartment communities. In this issue, ABODE continues its coverage of the 2017 Honors Awards. Interviews with the maintenance award winners begins on Page 36. ABODE gets personal with the 2017 Honors Supplier of the Year, Jacob Kunath of Century A/C, in a Q&A, which starts on Page 44. Throughout the rest of the magazine, readers can find maintenancerelated articles starting on Page 48. Cover Maintenance Image by Dave Bredeson/ dreamstime.
FEATURES & PHOTOS 16 On the Scene – Photos from the Expo Appreciation Party at State Fare Kitchen & Bar.
COLUMNS & MONTHLY UPDATES
30 On the Scene – Photos from the It’s the Law Luncheon in August.
7 President’s Corner – Maximizing maintenance, a multifamily legislative win and information on the 2017 HAA Directory and Buyer’s Guide.
32 On the Scene – Photos from the Wonka Bowl in July.
8 Patron of the Month – Meet and support AAA Plumbers.
36 Maintenance Matters – Read Q&As on our 2017 Honors Awards maintenance winners, David Aleman of Relik Realty, Nick Gomez of Gables Residential and Roberto Espinosa of Greystar.
9 Legislative Update – How legislature can affect maintenance.
44 Investing in Involvemnt – The 2017 Honors Awards Supplier of the Year, Jacob Kunath of Century A/C gets personal in his Q&A. 48 The Power of the Maintenance Supervisor – Management tips for maintenance supervisor.
11 It’s The Law – Learn the laws on sewage spills. 14 Resident Relations – A resident disputes damages. 19 Upcoming Education – Find out what education courses the Houston Apartment Foundation is offering in September and October. 20 Calendar – HAA’s schedule of events for the next coming months.
54 Prevent Plumbing Problems – Here is an easy list of plumbing tips to share with your on-site team.
26 NAA Update – Property management companies are turning to training.
58 On Site with ABODE – Honors Awards Senior Living Property of the Year.
28 On the Road with HAA – Photos from the Pearland Area Council Meeting.
59 On Site with ABODE – Honors Awards 2016 New Development HighRise Property of the Year.
62 Welcome Mat – Meet the newest HAA members.
60 On Site with ABODE – Honors Awards 2016 New Development MidRise Property of the Year.
64 Go-Getters – Making membership matter! 68 The Ambassador ONE Society – News from the HAA welcome wagon. 70 Portfolio Changes and In the News – Industry news clips from our members. 74 Index of Advertisers – See the supplier members who support this publication. 75 MarketLine – The latest area market numbers. 76 BackPage – HAA gives New Hope.
We welcome your comments. Email us at email@example.com.
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OFFICERS AND ASSOCIATION LEADERSHIP
JOHN BORIACK Vice President at Large
MICHELLE PAWELEK President-Elect KYLE BROWN President
JOHN FEDORKO Vice President at Large
DIANE GILBERT Vice President at Large
KELLY SCOTT Secretary/Treasurer
CLAY HICKS Vice President at Large
HOWARD BOOKSTAFF General Counsel
STARLA TURNBO Vice President at Large JEFF HALL Executive VP
BOARD OF DIRECTORS Alison Hall, Immediate Past President Josh Allen Mack Armstrong Jeff Blevins John Boriack Kyle Brown Joe Bryson Tina Cavaco Grant Crowell Scott Douglas Ian Douglas John Fedorko Paula Forshee Amy Funk Israel Garza Diane Gilbert Stephanie Graves Ira Gross Bryan Head Clay Hicks David Jones Jacob Kunath Barby Lake Laura Lestus Kristin McLaughlin Carlos Neto Dean O’Kelley Michelle Pahl Velissa Parmer Jenifer Paneral Mark Park Michelle Pawelek Jackie Rhone Christy Rodriguez Kelly Scott Kurt Seidel Kim Small Debbie Sulzer Dana Tucker Starla Turnbo Beth Van Winkle Quintina Willis Tracie Yoder DIRECTORS EMERITUS Gary Blumberg Ken Bohan Kathy Clem Jack Dinerstein
Darlene Guidry Jenard Gross David Hargrove Larry Hill Stacy Hunt Hap Hunnicutt Mike Koch Dick LaMarche Tim Myers P. David Onanian John Ridgway Eileen Subinsky Steve Sweet Kirk Tate Suan Tinsley H.J. Tollett Pat Tollett Vic Vacek Jr. Jerry Winograd ADVISORY DIRECTORS Terri Clifton Brenda Crawford Billy Griffin Cesar Lima Robert Lopes Sonia Lopez Karen Nelsen Shelley Watson Tony Whitaker GENERAL COUNSEL EMERITUS Joe Bax HONORARY LIFE MEMBERS Claude Arnold Kenn Brown Tina Cavaco Kevin Fenn Diane Gilbert Anita Harrison Dwayne Henson Mike Koch Merry Mount Monette Reynolds Sherry Stevenson Kirk Tate Suan Tinsley Sonny Unverzagt Del Walmsley Nancé Wells
H.P. Paul Young Jeanne Marie Zublin Dicks PRODUCT SERVICE COUNCIL OFFICERS Israel Garza, CAS, President Maintenance Supply Headquarters Grant Crowell, CAS, Vice President The Urban Foresters Jacob Kunath, CAS, Secretary Century A/C Supply Laura Lestus, CAS, Treasurer The Liberty Group Kristin McLaughlin, CASE, Immediate Past President Mohawk Industries MEMBERS Marivel Bownds, CAS, Valet Waste Dixie Caldwell-Greer, CAS, The Liberty Group Peggy Charles, CASE, Sunny Rock International LLC Dylan Coleman, CAS Camp Construction Services Deborah DeRouen, CAS, Respage Derek DeVries, CAS, Camp Construction Services Brian Febbo, CAS FSI Construction Jimmie Hotz, CASE, HD Supply Dan James, CAS Redevelopment Services Debra Knight, CAS, Valet Waste
Stephanie Krop, CASE, Buyers Access Liz Levins, CAS David Lindley, CAS, FSI Construction Inc. Candis Mohr, CAS, AAA Plumbers Doug Oehl, CAS Power Express PATRON MEMBERS 1980 CSC ServiceWorks 1982 Republic Services 1986 Craven Carpet 1987 For Rent Media Solutions 1994 AAA Plumbers Presto Maintenance Supply 1996 Houston Planned Energy Systems 1997 RentPath 1999 FSI Construction Inc. 2003 Dixie Carpet Installations 2009 Camp Construction Services 2013 Criterion Brock
SPONSOR MEMBERS 1968 Century A/C Supply Hoover Slovacek LLP Reliant 1973 Brady Chapman Holland & Assoc. CORT Furniture Rental 1974 Mueller Water Conditioning 1976 Great American Business Products 1977 Webb Pest Control 1978 Houston Metro Electrical Corp. The Liberty Group 1981 AmRent Marvin F. Poer & Company 1983 Namco Mfg. Co. Inc. Sherwin Williams Company 1984 RENCON 1985 Gemstar Construction Development Inc. 1986 ApartmentData.com 1988 Wallace Garcia Wilson Architects Inc. 1992 Alexander-Rose Associates Saint Clair & Sons Inc. 1998 AAA Staffing Ltd. CoreLogic Rental Property Solutions 2000 Moveforfree.com Inc. Pura Flo Corporation 2001 Apartment Life Inc. 2002 American Fire Systems Classic Touch Painting Direct Energy LP Keystone Resources Southwest Painting Contractors Inc. 2003 Sign-Ups & Banners 2005 LSR Multifamily Swain & Baldwin Insurance & Risk Management United Protective Services 2006 Bell’s Laundries CAD Restoration Services DoodyCalls Lopez Carpet Care & Painting Masonry Solutions Inc. Roto-Rooter Services Co. TXU Energy Multifamily Services Valet Living 2008 ARE Business Solutions Flavor Finish Resurfacing HARCO Insurance Services Texas Turf Management 2009 Contractors Inc. Moen Inc. Redevelopment Services Storm Maintenance & Monitoring 2010 ALN Apartment Data Inc. BAC Products Belfor Property Restoration Certified Termite and Pest Control Cotton Commercial USA FTK Construction Services 2011 DNM Contracting Inc. Fantastic Floors Greenway Environmental Services Infinite Energy Inc. Parking Management Company/PMC Towing 2012 ABC Supply Co. Inc. Accent Sign & Awning Co. Brown & Gay Engineers Cantrell McCulloch Inc. EnviroSmart Multifamily Pest Solutions Floor and Decor Giordano Construction Go-Staff Inc.
Maldonado Nursery & Landscaping Inc. Nationwide Eviction Texas Concrete Professional Company 2013 ACTIV Answer by Audio Images Arbor Contract Carpet ASAP Steamers Carpet Cleaning Capitol Wrecker LLC Comcast Gambit Construction Gorman Roofing Services Outdoor Elements Pool Works LLC ProMaster Roofing & Gutter StoveTop FireStop Tidal Renovations LLC 2014 Adventure Playground Systems Inc. Chadwell Supply Classic Same Day Blinds D & G Quality Roofing J National Jonah Systems LLC MX2 Commercial Paving Pathfinder Insurance Group Perma-Pier Foundation Repair of Texas Ram Jack Foundation Solutions SisTerra Landscape Texas Apartment Pool Services The Katy Plumbing Co. Virtual Leasing Systems WCA Waste Corporation Zillow Group 2015 Admiral Linen & Uniform Service by Alsco Air Pro Systems America Outdoor Furniture American Painting & Renovations Inc. ASAP Personnel Inc. BSI Cameras Onsite CertaPro Painters Citi Fence Commercial Competitive Choice Inc. CSILED.com DeNyse Companies Division-9 Inc. Duke Sys Fix My Slab Foundation Repair Fulton Law Group PLLC Gateman Inc. Goes Heating Systems Greater Houston Pool Management H.S. Services Holder’s Pest Control Infinity Power Partners Kathy Andrews Interiors Lane Law Firm Notifii LLC Pace Mechanical Services Power Express Prestige Restoration LLC Smith Protective Service The Allshouse Group LLC Torocon Services LLC Wilsonart 2016 3'D Painting & Construction LLP 5885 Roofing & Construction Inc. Action Window Coverings Inc. Air Rescue Allied Fire Protection, LP Armadillo Professional Landscaping LLC Bath Fitter BH Fitness North America Cinc.h – Cabinet Refacing Kits Citi Fence & Concrete CoverAll Pests Delaney's Roofing & Restoration E-Systems Pest Management Inc. Ecolo Environmental Inc. Embark Services Entrust Movers Express Employment Professionals EZneeds Fidus Construction Services Fun Abounds Furniture Options Green City Recycler Green City Security Green Days Lawn Care Guardian Chimney Sweep Halo Doors Inc. Hillcroft Group LLC
Hive Houston Metro Security JLL Johnstone Supply Kastle Systems KONE Leah McVeigh Design and Consulting Liquid Waste Solutions Manning Pool Service McCann Total Security Solutions Murrah & Killough PLLC Murray Insurance & Financial O’Conor, Mason & Bone PC Paul Davis Restoration North Houston Pet and Playground Products Platinum Enterprises LLC Progressive 1 Roofing & Construction Quantum Fitness Ram Construction Roadrunner Restoration RoofTec Ross Fried Consulting Sparkle Wash Pressure Washing Stream Energy Sustain-Ability Solutions Texan Glass & Solar Control Texas Southwest Floors The Home Depot The Perfect Light The PI Company ValencePM VMI’s Premier Group LLC WASH Multifamily Laundry Systems WellKept WF Athletic Supply Whitmans Contracting and Roofing 2017 911 Security Cameras Inc. Abilities Unlimited Inc. ACT Security Group Advanced Property Services All About Doody Pet Soutions LLC All American Mailboxes of Houston Inc. Allegion American Fire Protection Group Apartment Total Services BioTechs South Houston Brooklet Energy Distribution Buddy's Roofing & Construction Co. Byte Time Computing Cano Electric Inc. City Supply Co. Inc. Classic Towing CoreServ LLC Creative Surface Cypress Landscaping & Irrigation Inc. D&C Painting Designs by Holmes Disaster America Eagle Restore, LLC Energy Ogre Fast Forward Services Flooring4.Us Frost Insurance Agency Gage Multifamily Services Genesis Panel Systems Gravely & Pearson LLP H Town Movers and HVAC Services HousingManager.com Lithotech Printed Products/Forms Center Maven Auto Detailing McMahan's Flooring Inc. Media Nation Outdoor MPS Direct Norman Construction NorthMarq Capital On Site Towing LLC Paul Ryan Windows POPIC Re-Mark Technologies Group LLC Reliable Fire Protection Rent Accelerator Richmond Equipment Roof Top Innovations SEAL Security Solutions Secure Insurance Special Touch Landscaping State Sign - A Comet Signs Company Student Movers Inc. Symmons Industries TD Waterproofing Texas Crime Prevention Agency Texas Eviction, LLC Willbanks & Associates
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ABODE SEPTEMBER 2017 I VOLUME 40, ISSUE 9 Executive Vice President and Publisher
JEFF HALL, CAE firstname.lastname@example.org EDITORIAL AND DESIGN STAFF
Director of Publications and Design DEBORAH NIX email@example.com Writer/Editor MORGAN TAYLOR firstname.lastname@example.org ADVERTISING
Vice President of Membership and Marketing AMANDA SHERBONDY email@example.com CONTRIBUTING STAFF
Vice President and General Manager SUSAN HINKLEY, CAE firstname.lastname@example.org Vice President of Professional Development EMILY HILTON, CPP email@example.com Vice President of Public Affairs ANDY TEAS, CAE firstname.lastname@example.org Vice President of Finance NANCY LI LO, CPA email@example.com Director of Information Technology ART EIDMAN firstname.lastname@example.org Director of Resident Relations MATILDE LUNA email@example.com Director of Events and Meetings EMILY BANNWARTH, CMP firstname.lastname@example.org Director of Rental Credit Reporting TINA DEFIORE email@example.com Education and Meetings Coordinator KAREN MITCHELL firstname.lastname@example.org Strategic Growth Manager LAUREN TURNER, CMP email@example.com Membership and Marketing Coordinator LAUREN WOLFSON firstname.lastname@example.org Public Affairs Specialist ALPA PATEL email@example.com Webmaster and IT Specialist WILL ALFARO firstname.lastname@example.org PRINTER
TGI PRINTED www.tgiprinted.com HOUSTON COMMITTEE Executive Program & Budget Nominating Ethics Investment Fair Housing By-Laws Past Presidents Council Strategic Growth Legislative PAC Fundraising HAA Better Government Fund Century Club Multifamily Fire Safety Alliance Media Relations Golf Developers Leadership Development Product Service Council Community Outreach Resident Relations Appeals Resident Relations A Resident Relations B Membership Ambassador ONE Society 2017 Expo IROC Education Advisory Council Career/Community Development NEXT HAF Fundraiser Property Awards HAA Street Team
APARTMENT ASSOCIATION COMMITTEES CHAIR STAFF ADVISOR KYLE BROWN JEFF HALL MICHELLE PAWELEK JEFF HALL ALISON HALL JEFF HALL EILEEN SUBINSKY JEFF HALL KELLY SCOTT JEFF HALL BRYAN HEAD JEFF HALL KIM SMALL JEFF HALL JENIFER PANERAL JEFF HALL KELLY SCOTT LAUREN TURNER MICHELLE PAWELEK ANDY TEAS JERRY WINOGRAD ANDY TEAS STACY HUNT/JOHN RIDGWAY ANDY TEAS LAURA LESTUS ANDY TEAS JOHN FEDORKO ANDY TEAS JOHN FEDORKO ANDY TEAS CLAY HICKS ANDY TEAS CYRUS BAHRAMI ANDY TEAS MACK ARMSTRONG SUSAN HINKLEY IZZY GARZA SUSAN HINKLEY JOHN BORIACK SUSAN HINKLEY DARLENE GUIDRY MATILDE LUNA HEATHER LACLAIRE MATILDE LUNA KARI CARGLE MATILDE LUNA CLAY HICKS AMANDA SHERBONDY DEBORAH DEROUEN/DEREK DEVRIES AMANDA SHERBONDY GRANT CROWELL AMANDA SHERBONDY STEPHANIE BRYSON EMILY HILTON STARLA TURNBO EMILY HILTON DIANE GILBERT EMILY HILTON LINDSAY TORRES/DAVID LINDLEY EMILY HILTON SUSAN WELLS/ARRIE COLCA EMILY BANNWARTH DAVID JONES/STEPHANIE GRAVES TINA DEFIORE CARINA BRYARS LAUREN WOLFSON
HOUSTON APARTMENT ASSOCIATION MISSION AND VISION HAA is the leading advocate, resource and community partner for quality rental housing providers in the Houston and surrounding area. HAA develops leadership in the multifamily industry by engaging broadly diverse membership, embracing effective technology and advocating for a geographically inclusive association.
Visit HAA Online at www.haaonline.org ABODE IS THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE HOUSTON APARTMENT ASSOCIATION. Serving the multihousing industry in Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Colorado, Fort Bend, Harris, Liberty, Matagorda, Montgomery, San Jacinto, Waller and Wharton counties. ABODE, SEPTEMBER 2017 VOLUME 40, ISSUE 9 ABODE (USPS 024-962) is published monthly by the Houston Multi Housing Corporation. Publishing, editorial and advertising offices are located at 4810 Westway Park Blvd., Houston, Texas 77041. Telephone 713-595-0300. The $50 annual ABODE subscription rate is included in all member dues and additional subscriptions are available. The annual subscription rate is $50 for members, $65 for non-members. Advertising rates are available upon request. Contributed material does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Houston Apartment Association. Copyright Â© 2017 by HAA. Periodicals Postage Paid at Houston, Texas. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to ABODE, 4810 Westway Park Blvd., Houston, Texas 77041.
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Bill DinersteinMemorial T o u r n a m e n t Benefiting the Houston Apartment Association Political Action Committee
Monday, October 16, Riverbend Country Club, 1214 Dulles Ave, Sugar Land, TX 77478
Join us for the 38th annual HAA Golf Tournament. Prizes for: Closest To Pin • Longest Drive • Tournament prizes awarded for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place, net scores. Check-in opens at 8 a.m. with a breakfast buffet. Shotgun start at 9 a.m. with award reception to follow. Two owner/management and two suppliers per team. NEW! Tiger Drive One “Tiger Drive” may be purchased for $50 per team. The Tiger Drive may be used on Hole #12 and assumes that “Tiger” hit your first shot and allows teams to skip the tee box and proceed to the designated area where they will hit their second shot.
Registration fee includes golf fees, breakfast, beverages during play and reception. *Please note this event is open to sponsors and players only, no spectators. In the event of rain, your contribution will go to the HAA Political Action Committee. Contributions are not tax-deductible as charitable contributions under the Internal Revenue Code. Paid for by HAA Political Action Committee, Stacy Hunt, Treasurer.
Payment must be made by personal credit card Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover or personal check payable to HAA PAC. Payment must accompany registration. HAA is prohibited from accepting corporate contributions for PAC events. Name __________________________________________________________________________________________________ ____________ Company________________________________________________________________ Phone (____________)_________________________ MC____ Visa____ AmEx____ Discv_______ Credit Card #________________________________________________________________________ CC Security Code____________ Expiration Date__________ Name on Card______________________________________________________________ Number of players (two owner/management, two supplier) paid for___________ @ $180 each by October 9/$200 after October 9 = $_________ Add “Tiger Drive” for $50 $_________ = _____________ (total amount paid). Owner/Management Name____________________________________________Company_______________________________ Handicap___________ Owner/Management Name____________________________________________Company_______________________________ Handicap___________ Supplier Name________________________________________________Company___________________________________ Handicap___________ Supplier Name________________________________________________Company___________________________________ Handicap___________ Mail completed form and payment to: HAA PAC, 4810 Westway Park Blvd., Houston, Texas 77041. Credit card registrations may be emailed to email@example.com or faxed to 281-582-1520; payment must accompany registration.
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President’s Corner By KYLE BROWN, CPM, 2017 HAA President
MAXIMIZING MAINTENANCE Coverage of the Honors Awards continues with this issue of ABODE.
LAST MONTH ABODE sat down with the Honors Awards managers and upper management recipients. In this issue, ABODE has extended its Honors coverage with Q&As from the Honors maintenance personnel and the Supplier of the Year recipient Jacob Kunath, Century A/C. All of this begins on Page 36. Following the Honors maintenance coverage are maintenance related articles, which speak to both maintenance personnel, maintenance leaders and even property managers. You can find these articles starting on Page 48. New Hope Housing On Aug. 3 the HAA Community Outreach Committee dropped off a haul of donated items to the New Hope Housing Community Rittenhouse. New Hope Housing provides quality, permanent housing with support services for people who live on very limited incomes or who are transitioning out of homelessness. Thank you to Brook Furniture Rental, Texas Eviction, Murphy’s Corporate Housing, Houston Waste Solutions, our in-
credible Ambassador ONE Society and all who made such generous donations to this outstanding organization. See the Back Page to see photos and more information.
This new law protects apartment owners from class-action lawsuits over water billing disputes, while still ensuring that residents can make complaints through the Public Utility Commission.
A Water Bill Win I want to briefly talk about the most important state legislative victory that came courtesy of two Houston-area lawmakers, Sen. Brandon Creighton (R-Conroe) and Rep. Jim Murphy (R-Houston). HAA General Counsel Howard Bookstaff touched on it in the July issue as part of his monthly column. This new law protects apartment owners from class-action lawsuits over water billing disputes, while still ensuring that residents can make complaints through the Public Utility Commission. This bill was aggressively opposed by the plaintiffs' trial lawyers, but was passed by both the House and Senate with a super-majority. This was particularly important because it takes a two-thirds vote for a bill to become effective immediately. The immediate effect was needed to prevent
enterprising attorneys from filing lawsuits before the law change became official. Rise Above the Competition: Directory Deadline Stand tall and get spotted this year by listing your company in the HAA’s 2018 Directory & Buyers Guide before the deadline on Sept. 30. I personally rely on the HAA Directory and Buyer’s Guide for qualified and vetted supplier companies. The Buyer’s Guide reaches over 2,900 apartment communities, more than 900 management companies and 800 supplier companies. Contact Amanda for information and assistance at 713-595-0316 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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These companies have generously supported the Houston Apartment Association with their patron membership. Please give them careful consideration, whenever possible, in your business.
Houston Planned Energy Systems
For Rent Media Solutions
HAA Member since 1978
HAA Member since 1987
HAA Member since 1982
HAA Member since 1985
Presto Maintenance Supply
HAA Member since 1983
HAA Member since 1984
FSI Construction Inc.
HAA Member since 1961
HAA Member since 1999
Dixie Carpet Installations
HAA Member since 1986
HAA Member since 1987
Camp Construction Services
HAA Member since 1994
HAA Member since 1979
September Patron of the Month
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By MICHELLE PAWELEK, CPM, CAPS, HAA Legislative Chair, with ANDY TEAS, CAE, Vice President of Public Affairs
MAINTENANCE & GOVERNMENT Legislative issues to remember in property maintenance.
WE OFTEN THINK of the apartment industry’s legislative issues as big financial matters that only affect company executives and investors. Increasingly, federal, state and local legislative matters impact the day-today operation and maintenance of a multifamily property. Here are a few legislative matters for you and your maintenance staff to keep in mind. This is not a complete list (as one would not fit in a single magazine article) – just a few highlights. Federal Requirements If your property has a pool, you’re probably familiar with the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool & Spa Safety Act, which requires special antientrapment drain covers and equipment in swimming pools and spas throughout the United States. Not only does your pool need to be in compliance, but you also need to keep the paperwork that shows when your drain cover was installed. Keep in mind, it’s only good for a specific number of years, depending on the type you have. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has a rule that requires you to allow residents to have satellite dishes, subject to a number of restrictions. There’s an article in the TAA Redbook with all the details, and you need to know the rules as you deal with residents trying to attach satellite dishes to the buildings. Texas Requirements Smoke Alarms: Texas law requires smoke alarms in every apartment unit. In recent years, this was expanded to require a smoke alarm in each bedroom. The owner has to make sure it works when the resident moves in, but it’s the resident’s responsibility after that. If you’re notified by a resident that a smoke alarm is missing or inoperable, you need to fix it “within a reasonable time….” Security Devices: Texas law is really www.haaonline.org
specific about door and window locks. Every exterior door Increasingly, federal, state and local legislative matto a unit needs a “keyless boltters impact the day-to-day operation and mainteing device” – usually a deadbolt nance of a multifamily property. Here are a few lock with a lever on one side of legislative matters for you and your maintenance the door – nothing on the other staff to keep in mind. side – with at least a 1-inch throw into a metal strike plate. Each door needs a wide-angle door viewer (peephole). Every window needs a latch. Every sliding glass door needs a pin lock. Employee Liability: For many years, some There are very specific requirements about the jurisdictions would send inspectors to an type and placement of these in your Redbook. apartment property. If something was amiss, When you do a makeready, it’s a good idea to they would write a ticket to the first employee check all the security devices for compliance. they spotted, sometimes holding a part-time Hot water: This sort of thing is usually govleasing agent or an assistant maintenance erned by local codes, but Texas law specifically technician personally, criminally liable for requires the property to “…supply hot water of some sort of construction defect. The legislaa minimum temperature of 120 degrees ture finally passed a law saying an employee Fahrenheit.” Keep in mind that 120-degree can’t be held personally liable as long as they water isn’t going to be that hot at the kitchen give the inspector the name and contact infortap in the farthest unit from the boiler, so plan mation of the owner. If you’re a maintenance accordingly. tech, make sure you know this information. Swimming Pools: Texas law requires a 4foot high fence with a self-closing, self-latchLocal Requirements ing gate around an apartment pool. This is County and city requirements can vary measured on the outside side of the fence, greatly by jurisdiction. The Houston Apartwhich always seems to be in a flower bed, for ment Association has long had their primary some reason. It’s important for maintenance focus on the City of Houston, but we’re trying techs to be aware of this – a thick layer of nice, to do a better job of keeping track of local renew mulch may be great for the plants, but it quirements in other areas. Here are a few might put your fence out of compliance. Gate maintenance items to keep in mind. latches seem to require frequent – if not conFire Code: Houston uses a modified version stant – service, and should be at the top of any of the International Fire Code, with a few maintenance tech’s list of items to check. State changes specific to our city. In older Houston pool rules require a shepherd’s crook, ring apartments, any time a single-station smoke buoy and throwing rope. These aren’t toys, but alarm (the old 9-volt battery kind that is not residents sometimes feel otherwise. A frequent interconnected) is broken or missing, you check of these safety items is an important need to replace it with a sealed, tampertask for your maintenance staff. Another state resistant alarm with a lithium battery. When rule involves the emergency phone. Again, a maintenance techs replace an alarm, make quick, frequent check of the phone by your sure they’re using the approved type. Most / See Legislative, Page 61 maintenance staff is a good idea. September 2017
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It’s the Law
By HOWARD BOOKSTAFF, Hoover Slovacek LLP , HAA General Counsel and RYAN PATRICK, Former Judge of the 177th Criminal District Court, Harris County
A MESSY BUSINESS
Sewage spills are a crime – get familiar with the law in this break-down. YOU ARE SITTING at your desk minding your own business. You see police lights outside your window. Police show up at your door. They tell you to get in their police car to go downtown. You are being arrested! “For what?” you ask. Turns out the property had a sewage spill about a year ago. You cleaned it up, but that doesn’t matter. Nobody seems to care. You are being charged with a felony! You have a number of questions. Before you call your lawyer, you decide to read the ABODE magazine to find out what the law is. Here you go … Is it a crime when sewage spills at your property? Yes. The Texas Water Code has two provisions that could apply. Section 7.145 of the Texas Water Code provides, in part, that a person commits an offense if the person, acting intentionally or knowingly with respect to the person’s conduct, discharges or allows the discharge of a waste or pollutant into or adjacent to water in the state that causes or threatens to cause water pollution unless the waste or pollutant is discharged in strict compliance with all required permits or with an order issued or a rule adopted by the appropriate regulatory agency. Section 7.147 of the Texas Water Code provides, in part, that a person commits an offense if the person discharges or allows the discharge of any waste or pollutant into any water in the state that causes or threatens to cause water pollution unless the waste or pollutant is discharged in strict compliance with all required permits or with a valid or currently effective order issued or rule adopted by the appropriate regulatory agency. What if I unknowingly discharge sewage? These two offenses, while similar, have a very important distinction. The offense www.haaonline.org
under 7.145 requires the state to prove that the discharge was done intentionally and knowingly. This higher burden on the state carries with it a harsher penalty for the defendant. However, section 7.147 contains language allowing the state to prosecute an entity or person without alleging any culpable mental state.
Section 7.145 of the Texas Water Code provides, in part, that a person commits an offense if the person, acting intentionally or knowingly with respect to the person’s conduct, discharges or allows the discharge of a waste or pollutant into or adjacent to water in the state that causes or threatens to cause water pollution unless the waste or pollutant is discharged in strict compliance with all required permits or with an order issued or a rule adopted by the appropriate regulatory agency.
What is the penalty for an unauthorized discharge of sewage? It depends on whether the offense is committed intentionally or knowingly and whether the offender is an individual or an entity. If the offense is intentionally or knowingly committed and the offender is an individual, the punishment is a fine of $1,000 to $100,000 or confinement of up to five years in jail, or both. If the offender is not an individual, the punishment is a fine of $1,000 to $250,000. If the offense is not committed intentionally or knowingly and the offender is an individual, the punishment is a fine of $1,000 to $50,000 or confinement of up to one year in jail, or both. If the offender is not an individual, the punishment is a fine of $1,000 to $100,000. Repeat offenses with respect to either crime doubles the possible fine ranges with each day of a violation being a separate offense. Is the crime a felony or misdemeanor? If the crime is committed intentionally or knowingly, the crime can be charged as a felony. A crime that is not committed intentionally or knowingly can be charged as a misdemeanor. What if I cleaned up the sewage as soon as I knew about the spill? It may not matter. There are no defenses to
these offenses and no allowance for mitigation after the fact. There is nothing in the law that creates a defense to prosecution when the actor takes corrective action after a spill. Generally, once sewage touches the ground, especially if it makes its way into a storm sewer, the sewage is considered in the water supply thus triggering the Texas Water Code provisions. Like most criminal offenses, ignorance of the law is not a defense. The only limited defense to sewage waste violations is if the discharge was caused by an act of God, war, strike, riot or another catastrophe. It may be important to note that conduct punishable as an offense under the Texas Water Code that is also punishable under another law may be prosecuted under either law. While these two sections are the most commonly filed with respect to sewage spills, a charge could be brought under any other appropriate law. For example, if a person is injured by a sewage spill by contracting a disease or some other injury, the state could arguably file a charge of “reckless aggravated assault” or some similar crime. Whether this could happen or not will depend upon the facts associated with each particular case. However, it is important that if a spill occurs, the spill must be cleaned up immediately in compliance with proper procedures and applicable law. September 2017
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The law is harsh when it comes to sewage spills. The best offense is a good maintenance program to avoid issues.
How long does the state have to pursue a violation of the law? The statute of limitations for the felony offense is three years. The statute of limitations for a misdemeanor offense is two years. In other words, after a spill occurs, the state could pursue offenses for three years and two years, respectively. What can I do to avoid a problem? The easiest answer is to avoid sewage spills. This may be more difficult than it sounds since oftentimes sewage spills are out of your control. Apartment communities are active places. Residents seem to constantly put inappropriate items down sinks and toilets that can cause sewer problems. Residents cook with grease without appropriate grease traps which can lead to clogged pipes. Maintenance personnel try to unclog lines by taking off sewer caps without following proper procedures to avoid sewage spills. Preventative maintenance is always a good idea. Although many of the problems that cause a sewage spill are outside of your control, there may be a few things you can do to minimize problems. Be sure that sewage lines are well maintained and in good shape. If sewage lines need to be flushed, the appropriate permits should be obtained. Be sure to regularly inspect sewer lines for cracks. Monitor water usage to better able detect leaks caused by cracks. Adopt rules regulating what residents can put down the sink and the toilet. The TAA lease provides that trash must be disposed of at least weekly in appropriate receptacles in accordance with local ordinances. This requirement could be beefed up with community policies regarding the disposal of items in sinks and toilets. The law is harsh when it comes to sewage spills. The best offense is a good maintenance program to avoid issues. If a sewage spill occurs, clean it up quickly and in accordance with applicable laws. Even though an offense may not be avoided, raw sewage flowing at your property will create a multitude of other issues ranging from resident dissatisfaction, odors or potentially health hazards. If you ever find yourself in a position of being questioned by the authorities, treat the issue seriously and get the assistance of competent legal counsel. Since sewage spill offenses involve potential criminal prosecution, a criminal lawyer should be involved whenever dealing with the authorities.
Want to see more “It’s the Law?” You can access current and previous issues of ABODE online. Go to http://issuu.com/haa_abode View this issue on your computer, tablet or smartphone at http://issuu.com/haa_abode/docs/abode_sept2017. 12
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Resident Relations from the RESIDENT RELATIONS COMMITTEE
IT WASN’T ME!
A resident seeks to dispute damages that he claimed were there upon his move-in. A RESIDENT FILED a complaint
with HAA to dispute charges. Upon move out, the resident had a final bill of $1,730.86, which mostly included cleaning charges and unpaid utility charges. The resident said he shouldn’t have been charged for those damages. He claimed the damages were there upon move-in and all other damages should be considered normal wear and tear. He did however agree to pay his final utility bill, which totaled $215.90. Enclosed were copies of the move-in condition form and move-out statement. Management responded to HAA and that response was forwarded to the resident. Management felt the resident was charged accord-
ingly. Enclosed were copies of the lease, application, The HAA Resident Relations Committees provide move-in condition form, an impartial review of resident complaints using move-out statement and the documentation provided by both the resident invoices. Pictures were and management. also provided. After reviewing the documents provided, including the photos, the committee deThe resident may wish to pursue this comcided in favor of management with an adjustplaint in small claims court. ment made. Because management failed to If you are a manager with a resident provide an invoice for the resurfacing charges, relations issue, call HAA at 713-595-0300 the committee deducted the resurfacing for assistance. Renters can be referred to HAA charges of $230. to speak to a trained consultant Wednesdays After the adjustment was made, the resifrom 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and Thursdays and Frident owes the property $1,500.86. days from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
I wasn’t expecting it at all. I was surprised that they nominated me!” he said, laughing. “ I’ve been with this business for 15 years. I never expect anything. For me, if I get my job done or get it right, I’m satisfied with that. I don’t need recognition. As long as my resident and my management and the owner are happy, I’m happy. It was a good experience, though, feeling that way. I didn’t know that someone was watching!”
I wasn’t expecting it at all. I was surprised that they nominated me!” he said, laughing. “ I’ve been with this business for 15 years. I never expect anything. For me, if I get my job done or get it right, I’m satisfied with that. I don’t need recognition. As long as my resident and my management and the owner are happy, I’m happy. It was a good experience, though, feeling that way. I didn’t know that someone was watching!”
I wasn’t expecting it at all. I was surprised that they nominated me!” he said, laughing. “ I’ve been with this business for 15 years. I never expect anything. For me, if I get my job done or get it right, I’m satisfied with that. I don’t need recognition. As long as my resident and my management and the owner are happy, I’m happy. It was a good experience, though, feeling that way. I didn’t know that someone was watching!”
I wasn’t expecting it at all. I w surprised that they nominated said, laughing. “ I’ve been wit business for 15 years. I never e anything. For me, if I get my j or get it right, I’m satisfied wit don’t need recognition. As lon resident and my management owner are happy, I’m happy. I good experience, though, feel way. I didn’t know that someo watching!”
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On the Scene with the HAA Expo Committee Expo Committee Appreciation Party Friday, June 30 at State Fare Kitchen & Bar Expo Committee Chair Grant Crowell and the top producing members of the committee enjoyed an afternoon of fine food in appreciation of their hard work for the 2017 “It Starts Here” HAA Education Conference & Expo. Congratulations to our top producers: 1 Best Team Spratt’s Origins with team captain Natalie Spratt, Scenic Property Group; 2 Rookie of the Year Meredith Savoie, The Dinerstein Companies; and 3 Top Producer Peggy Charles, Sunny Rock International, for the fourth year in a row!
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SEPTEMBER CAMT Interior & Exterior Maintenance and Repair Tuesday, September 12 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Program fee: program $795 per member; individual modules can be taken as stand-alone seminars at $165 each Sponsored by Ferguson Facility Supply See Page 23 for details CAMT Electrical Maintenance & Repair Wednesday, September 13 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Program fee: program $795 per member; individual modules can be taken as stand-alone seminars at $165 each Sponsored by Texas Apartment Pool Services See Page 23 for details. CAMT Plumbing Maintenance and Repair (2 days) Thursday, September 14 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Program fee: program $795 per member; individual modules can be taken as stand-alone seminars at $165 each Sponsored by AAA Plumbers See Page 23 for details. Leasing 101 (Day and a half) Tuesday, September 19 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Program fee: $65 by Sept. 19; $75 post Sept. 19 An in-depth introduction to the apartment industry for new leasing professionals as well as those individuals looking to learn more about the industry as a career. Topics covered include: greeting and qualifying the
SCHEDULE AND FEES
From the HAA EDUCATION DEPARTMENT
customer; executing the lease contract; overcoming objections and closing techniques; an overview of Fair Housing and more. Students who complete the course will receive a certificate, as well as a listing of placement agencies and management companies that are members of HAA. APPLE: Maintenance Session 2 – Looks Don’t Matter and Other Lies your Mama Told You Thursday, September 21 8:30 a.m. to noon Program fee: $50 per session Sponsored by Hire Priority Staffing & Executive Search See Page 22 for more details. IROC Breakfast Friday, September 22 7:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. Program fee: $25 per nonmember Sponsored by Presto Maintenance Supply The Independent Rental Owners' Connection (IROC) offers customized education and networking programs just for you. Whether you're a brand-new apartment community owner, or have been a part of the industry for many years, we encourage you to network within your fellow independent owners. APPLE: Marketing Session 3 – Mad Men Marketing Secrets Everyone Should Know Tuesday, September 26 8:30 a.m. to noon Program fee: $50 per session Sponsored by Best Plumbing See Page 22 for more details. ACES September Luncheon Friday, September 29
are subject to change without prior notification. Notice of cancellation is required two days in advance to receive a refund, less a $15 administrative fee. Seats are guaranteed on a first-come, first-served basis when payment and registration are received in advance of the program. Unless otherwise indicated, courses are held in either the Camden and Michael Stevens Interests Room or the Direct Energy and Liberty Personnel & Executive Search Room at the Dinerstein Reed Prokop Education Center, 4810 Westway Park Blvd. on the second floor of the HAA Office www.haaonline.org
11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Program fee: $55 per member Sponsored by Guardian Construction and Texscape Services Please note that this program is open only to executives in property management (owners, presidents, regionals, supervisors, marketing/ training directors, etc.). Eligible attendees to ACES luncheons are permitted to invite any of their staff to the programs, provided the registration also includes at least one person at the supervisor level or above.
OCTOBER NALP I: Bringing in New Residents: Be Prepared Tuesday, October 3 8:30 a.m. to noon Sponsored by Best Plumbing Program fee: $325; $65 per seminar Sponsored by Best Plumbing This course focuses on the skills needed to deliver exceptional leasing support. See Page 24 for details. NALP II: Marketing and Maintaining Your Community Tuesday, October 3 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Program fee: $325; $65 per seminar Sponsored by Best Plumbing Explore the importance of image, reputation and brand in wellmaintained communities. See Page 24 for details. HAA NEXT: Professional Development Breakfast Friday, October 6 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Program fee: $10
Sponsored by Brandt Electrical Services This niche group within HAA is dedicated to the networking and professional development needs of HAA members 35 and younger. Network with your peers at this low-cost breakfast and grow your career together among the next generation of HAA leadership. NALP III: Why Your Competition Matters Tuesday, October 10 8:30 a.m. to noon Program fee: $325; $65 per seminar Sponsored by Best Plumbing A loyal and satisfied resident is at the heart of this course. See Page 24 for details. NALP IV: Relevant Laws and How to Apply Them Tuesday, October 10 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Program fee: $325; $65 per seminar Sponsored by Best Plumbing This course teaches a full spectrum of Fair Housing and ADA compliance. See Page 24 for details. APPLE: Core Session 6 – Ultimate Closing Thursday, October 12 9 a.m. to noon Program fee: $50 Sponsored by The Liberty Group See Page 22 for details. It's the Law Luncheon Friday, October 13 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Program fee: $25 Sponsored by Redevelopment Services / See Education, Page 25
Building. Seating is limited. You must pre-register. For more information and to register, go online at www.haaonline.org. Notice to Attendees: All pre-registered no-shows will be billed. For admittance into HAA/HAF events, payments will be required at the door if not received prior to the event. Start times listed above include a 30-minute registration period. Notice of cancellation is required two days prior to the event for a refund, less a $15 administrative fee. September 2017
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SEPTEMBER S M T W T
Calendar HAA Education, Events and Meetings SCHEDULE
3 4 5 6 7 10 11 12 13 14 17 18 19 20 21 24 25 26 27 28
F 1 8 15 22 29
S 2 9 16 23 30
OCTOBER S M T 1 2 3 8 9 10 15 16 17 22 23 24 29 30 31
W 4 11 18 25
T 5 12 19 26
F 6 13 20 27
S 7 14 21 28
Offices Closed The HAA offices will be closed on Monday, September 4 in observance of Labor Day.
Richmond/Rosenberg Fair Housing Seminar Wednesday, September 13 8:30 a.m. to noon Location: TBD Join Howard Bookstaff for a refresher course in Fair Housing. Contact Lauren Turner at email@example.com for details. Sponsored by Texas Apartment Pool Services
Leasing 101 (Day and a half) Tuesday, September 19 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
APPLE: Marketing Session 3 – Mad Men Marketing Secrets Everyone Should Know with Julie Irvin Tuesday, September 26 8:30 a.m. to noon See Page 22 for details. Sponsored by Best Plumbing
CAMT Electrical Maintenance & Repair Wednesday, September 13 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. See Page 23 for details. Sponsored by Texas Apartment Pool Services
Go-Getters Meeting Wednesday, September 20 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Café Adobe 7620 Katy Fwy, 77024 Visit the Go-Getters Corner at www.haaonline.org/gogetters for tips and tools for recruiting. Sponsored by AAA Plumbers and Impact Floors
6-8 Offices Closed The HAA offices will be closed from 3 p.m. Wednesday, September 6 through Friday, September 8 for HAA’s yearly Staff Planning event.
6 New Supplier Member Orientation Wednesday, September 6 3 p.m. Sherlock’s Baker St. Pub 10001 Westheimer, 77042 All new supplier members welcome. Contact Amanda at firstname.lastname@example.org for details. Ambassador ONE Society Meeting Wednesday, September 6 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sherlock’s Baker St. Pub 10001 Westheimer, 77042 Contact Amanda at email@example.com for details.
12 CAMT Interior & Exterior Maintenance and Repair Tuesday, September 12 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. See Page 23 for details. Sponsored by Ferguson Facility Supply
Resident Relations Committee B Wednesday, September 13 2 p.m.
14 CAMT Plumbing Maintenance and Repair (2 days) Thursday, September 14 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. See Page 23 for details. Sponsored by AAA Plumbers The Woodlands Happy Hour – Management Personnel Only Thursday, September 14 4 p.m. Calling all Conroe and The Woodlands area management and property professionals, please join us for some networking and fun. Meet your industry peers, and take a break from the heat. Your first drink is on us. Contact Lauren Turner at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Chili Committee Meeting Tuesday, September 19 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Committee members only. Contact Emily Bannwarth at ebannwarth@ haaonline.org for details.
27 Board Meeting Wednesday, September 27 4:30 p.m. Sponsored by Brandt Electrical Services
29 ACES September Luncheon Friday, September 29 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Sponsored by Guardian Construction and Texscape Services
21 APPLE: Maintenance Session 2 – Looks Don’t Matter and Other Lies your Mama Told You with Katie Rigsby Thursday, September 21 8:30 a.m. to noon See Page 22 for details. Sponsored by Hire Priority Staffing & Executive Search Lake Jackson Happy Hour – Management Personnel Only Thursday, September 21 4 p.m. Calling all Lake Jackson area management and property professionals, please join us for some networking and fun. Meet your industry peers, and take a break from the heat. Your first drink is on us. Contact Lauren Turner at email@example.com for details.
22 IROC Breakfast Friday, September 22 7:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. Sponsored by Presto Maintenance Supply
OCTOBER 3 NALP I: Bringing in New Residents: Be Prepared Tuesday, October 3 8:30 a.m. to noon See Page 24 for details. Sponsored by Best Plumbing NALP II: Marketing and Maintaining Your Community Tuesday, October 3 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. See Page 24 for details. Sponsored by Best Plumbing
4 New Supplier Member Orientation Wednesday, October 4 3 p.m. Sherlock’s Baker St. Pub 10001 Westheimer, 77042 All new supplier members welcome. Contact Amanda at asherbondy@ haaonline.org for details.
UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED, all events meet at our Dinerstein Reed Prokop Education Center, 4810 Westway Park Blvd., second floor, in either the Direct Energy and Liberty Personnel & Executive Search or the Camden and Michael Stevens Interests Room. Meetings located at the HAA Offices, 4810 Westway Park Blvd., first floor, will be held in the Redi Carpet and Winograd Families/Judwin Properties Conference Room. See www.haaonline.org for an interactive calendar. 20
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Please note that dates and times are subject to change. Check the calendars at www.haaonline.org for the most up-to-date information.
Ambassador ONE Society Meeting Wednesday, October 4 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sherlock’s Baker St. Pub 10001 Westheimer, 77042 Contact Amanda at asherbondy@ haaonline.org for details.
NALP III: Why Your Competition Matters Tuesday, October 10 8:30 a.m. to noon See Page 24 for details. Sponsored by Best Plumbing
Bill Dinerstein Memorial Golf Tournament Monday, October 16 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Riverbend Country Club 1214 Dulles Ave. Sugar Land, 77478 See Page 6 for details and sponsorship information.
NALP Market Survey Presentation & Exam Tuesday, October 24 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. See Page 24 for details. Sponsored by Best Plumbing
5 HAA PAC Luncheon Thursday, October 5 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Program fee: $30 per PAC member; $40 per non-PAC member Contact Alpa at apatel@ haaonline.org for registration and details. Sponsored by Secure Insurance
6 HAA NEXT: Professional Development Breakfast Friday, October 6 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Sponsored by Brandt Electrical Services PSC Supplier Education Program: Coffee Talk Friday, October 6 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Program fee: FREE for supplier members It all starts over coffee and good conversation. HAA and the Product Service Council offer this special program to help supplier representatives gain a better understanding of the opportunities available in the multifamily industry. Learn how to develop relationships with management personnel that result in business for your company. Register online at ww.haaonline.org/ supplierprogram. Sponsored by the HAA Product Service Council
Area Council: Rosenberg Tuesday, October 10 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Location: TBD Contact Lauren Turner at firstname.lastname@example.org for details. NALP IV: Relevant Laws and How to Apply Them Tuesday, October 10 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. See Page 24 for details. Sponsored by Best Plumbing
11 Resident Relations Committee A Wednesday, October 11 2 p.m.
12 APPLE: Core Session 6 – Ultimate Closing with Rebecca Rosario Thursday, October 12 9 a.m. to noon See Page 22 for details. Sponsored by The Liberty Group Fort Bend Happy Hour – Management Personnel Only Thursday, October 12 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Calling all Fort Bend-area management and property professionals, please join us for some networking and fun. Meet your industry peers, and take a break from the heat. Your first drink is on us. Contact Lauren Turner at email@example.com for details.
13 It's the Law Luncheon Friday, October 13 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sponsored by Redevelopment Services
17 NALP V: The Sales Process and Building Relationships Tuesday, October 17 8:30 a.m. to noon See Page 24 for details. Sponsored by Best Plumbing Chili Committee Meeting Tuesday, October 17 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Contact Emily Bannwarth at firstname.lastname@example.org for details. NALP VI: Effectively Meeting the Needs of Current Residents Tuesday, October 17 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. See Page 24 for details. Sponsored by Best Plumbing Baytown Happy Hour – Management Personnel Only Tuesday, October 17 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Calling all Baytown-area management and property professionals, please join us for some networking and fun. Meet your industry peers, and take a break from the heat. Your first drink is on us. Contact Lauren Turner at email@example.com for details.
25 APPLE: Leadership Session 3 – Making the Move from Peer to Supervisor with Sue Weston Wednesday, October 25 8:30 a.m. to noon See Page 22 for details. Sponsored by Best Plumbing
26 Webster Happy Hour – Management Personnel Only Thursday, October 26 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Calling all Webster-area management and property professionals, please join us for some networking and fun. Meet your industry peers, and take a break from the summer heat. Your first drink is on us. Contact Lauren Turner at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
28 27th Annual Chili Fest Saturday, October 28 Noon to 5 p.m. See Page 73 for details and sponsorship information.
31 Industry Math Tuesday, October 31 8:30 a.m. to noon
18-20 TAA Board Meetings Wednesday, October 18 through Friday, October 20 Hyatt Regency Houston/Galleria 2626 Sage Road, 77056
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Here’s a taste of the next four sessions:
t h g ri e th h it w er re ca r ou y w ro G ideas, the best advice and watch your future blossom –
Grab an APPLE! APPLE is sponsored by
APPLE features some of the best nationally acclaimed speakers in the industry.
APPLE: Maintenance – Session 2 September 21 Looks Don’t Matter and Other Lies Your Mama Told You with Katie Rigsby Groundskeepers, maintenance and the entire make-ready team are vital to the success (or failure) of a property and we have the stats to prove it! In this interactive session, we will look at the multiple roles of the support staff and the impressions they make with prospects and residents alike. Participants are given scenarios and encouraged to discuss where support staff can directly affect occupancy, resident retention and profitability while becoming a valued company asset. Key takeaways include: • Learn where maintenance/support staff ranks in the top 10 resident complaints • Understand how the role of maintenance and support staff directly affects occupancy, resident retention and profitability APPLE : Marketing – Session 3 September 26th Mad Men Marketing Secrets Everyone Should Know With Julie Irvin From signage, internet, print and outreach marketing – learn the ad agency secrets on how to get it done for less and done right.
Individual sessions are priced at only $50 each, a real steal for quality education. Annual Property Subscriptions are also available with unlimited attendance for all on-site property staff to all sessions at discounted prices: • Only $199 per year per property for properties with fewer than 200 units • Only $399 per year per property for properties with 200 to 350 units. • Only $450 per year per property for properties with more than 350 units.
APPLE: Core - Session 6 October 12 Ultimate Closing With Rebecca Rosario Apply sure-fire closing techniques to your leasing presentations that can double or triple your closing rates. • Take the fear out of asking for the money • Learn 10 closing cues to develop your personal sales techniques • Integrate closing questions throughout your leasing presentation APPLE : Leadership – Session 3 October 25 Making the Move from Peer to Supervisor With Sue Weston Intended for aspiring and new managers, we start with a “how you are perceived” assessment and then talk about the typical company response to your promotion. The transition from strong performer to manager is often unsupported and misunderstood. Former teammates are confused and even confrontational. Leadership may assume too much and be distant. Too many times it ends in dissatisfaction and poor results. This workshop provides the tips and tools for a successful transition for the newly-ascended supervisor. Learn how to: • Move from tactical to strategic thinking • Separate personal from professional relationships • Delegate to and defend a team of former peers • Use humor and camaraderie to support, not undermine, your new role • Ask for help • Measure your own success
Take a bite out of these education opportunities and enroll for 2017 today. Contact the HAA Education Department at email@example.com or register online at www.haaonline.org.
And there’s more sessions for 2017! Visit www.haaonline.org for details. 22
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Spend a few days with HAA building your future! Certified Apartment Maintenance Technician Program’s objective is to further the technical, business and personal development skills of today’s multifamily maintenance technician, resulting in improved on-the-job performance and a heightened awareness of customer service and responsibility. Course Schedule: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Total Program Cost: $795 Tuition can be paid per module: $165 per module for five modules.
Non-Technical Courses: The two non-technical courses are taught entirely online, allowing learners to take each course at their own convenience and at their own pace. After learning the new content in each course, students will go through a set of scenarios in which they evaluate the performance of maintenance technicians in realistic situations, then rate them on a set of criteria related to the learning points in the course. Each online course is approximately two-anda-half hours in length. Online courses can be available via the HAA computer lab for students without access to a computer or highspeed internet. • Inside the Apartment Business • People, Projects and Profits Both courses online only
Programs sponsored by AAA Plumbers, Blackmon Mooring/BMS CAT, Ferguson Facility Supply, Presto Maintenance Supply and Texas Apartment Pools
CAMT Course Required Modules: Technical Courses: The five technical courses take place in the classroom with an instructor presenting core concepts and procedures, as well as leading course participants through reinforcing learning activities. These activities will range from discussions to solving “what if” scenarios to hands-on activities. After each course, learners will go online to go through practice scenarios for that course. These scenarios let learners play the role of a maintenance technician in a realistic and safe environment. They will make decisions to prioritize, diagnose and repair problems, just as they would on the job. Interior and Exterior Maintenance and Repair Tuesday, September 12 Electrical Maintenance and Repair Wednesday, September 13 Plumbing Maintenance and Repair Thursday and Friday, September 14-15 Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Maintenance and Repair Tuesday and Wednesday, November 14-15 Appliances Maintenance and Repair Thursday and Friday, November 16-17 Comprehensive Exam Wednesday, December 20
Register online today at www.haaonline.org or call 713-595-0300 for details. www.haaonline.org
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ore m e Se
.org e n i l aon a h . ww at w
Education is your key to a great future
Distinguish yourself amongst a field of “tour guides” – learn to be a real salesperson and attain your NALP credential this year. The National Apartment Leasing Professional Program enhances the skills of the apartment leasing professional, resulting in better informed, highly professional individuals with increased lease activity and improved resident relations. Course Location and Schedule: Courses are held at the HAF Dinerstein Reed Prokop Education Center, 4810 Westway Park Blvd., off the beltway at Clay Road. Morning Sessions: 8:30 a.m. – Check-in and registration 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. – Program Afternoon Sessions: 12:30 p.m. – Check-in and registration 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. – Program
Sponsored by Best Plumbing
Total Program Cost: $325 Individual modules may be taken as stand-alone seminars at $65 per module. NALP I: Bringing in New Residents: Be Prepared Morning Session, October 3 This course focuses on the skills needed to deliver exceptional leasing support. From personal organization and time management to teamwork and technology, the top leasing professional applies these talents to a successful outcome for prospective residents. NALP II: Marketing and Maintaining Your Community Afternoon Session, October 3 Explore the importance of image, reputation and brand in well-maintained communities. The course covers a detailed list of what keeps a community in peak showable condition, along with the importance of a robust and varied marketing approach for maximum exposure. NALP III: Why Your Competition Matters Morning Session, October 10 A loyal and satisfied resident is at the heart of this course. The leasing professional is a critical component in inspiring and maintaining loyalty but must also understand the role of competitors and their offerings. This knowledge must be complete, accurate and timely. NALP IV: Relevant Laws and How to Apply Them Afternoon Session, October 10 This course teaches a full spectrum of Fair Housing and ADA compliance for both prospective and current residents. In addition, the course covers laws applying to prospect screening, application verification, the lease and lease addenda. NALP V: The Sales Process and Building Relationships Morning Session, October 24 Learn the foundations of relationship selling and the importance of problem-solving for both the prospective and current resident. Learn essential duties such as listening and responding specifically to the customer, handling objections and meaningful ways to close the sale. The course closes with a personal assessment of sales readiness. NALP VI: Effectively Meeting the Needs of Current Residents Afternoon Session, October 24 Once the prospective resident moves in, the leasing professional’s relationship and responsibilities continue. Learn the importance of handling maintenance and resident issues and continuing to be the positive brand for the community. Lease renewals and a focus on the all-important resident’s sense of community are pivotal skills for success. NALP: Market Survey Presentation & Exam: October 24
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Education, continued from Page 19 Join HAA's Legal Counsel, Howard Bookstaff, for lunch and a legal discussion in a casual environment. NALP V: The Sales Process and Building Relationships Tuesday, October 17 8:30 a.m. to noon Program fee: $325; $65 per seminar Sponsored by Best Plumbing Lean the foundation of relationship selling and the importance of problem solving for both the prospective and current resident. See Page 24 for details. NALP VI: Effectively Meeting the Needs of Current Residents Tuesday, October 17 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Program fee: $325; $65 per seminar Sponsored by Best Plumbing Once the prospective resident moves in, the leasing professional's relationship and responsibilities continue. See Page 24 for details. NALP Market Survey Presentation & Exam Tuesday, October 24 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Program fee: $325; $65 per seminar Sponsored by Best Plumbing A required component, students take a comprehensive online exam and present their market survey findings to the class. See Page 24 for details. APPLE: Leadership Session 3 – Making the Move from Peer to Supervisor Wednesday, October 25 8:30 a.m. to noon Program fee: $50 Sponsored by Best Plumbing See Page 22 for details. Industry Math Tuesday, October 31 8:30 a.m. to noon Program fee: $99 A New curriculum authored by NAA, this half day workshop is an excellent opportunity to sharpen your mathematical skills in preparation for attending any of the credential programs. From calculating percentages, to converting fractions to understanding averages and more, this is your chance to "go back to school" in a relaxed and low-stakes environment. Learn how various mathematical calculations influence operations and get introduced to the more advanced concepts you'll need to know to advance in your industry career.
No credit card or HAA login? No problem! We do not accept registrations over the phone. However, if you do not have access to a credit card, just use our “Express Registration” page (no login required) at www.haaonline.org/expressregistration. This simple form generates an email to us with your registration request. This is a binding transaction, and all cancellation policies still apply. NOTE: For your own individual HAA login ID and password, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Industry Update from the NATIONAL APARTMENT ASSOCIATION and the NATIONAL MULTIHOUSING COUNCIL
MAINTENANCE QUANDRY Property management firms are turning to training, among other solutions, to help fill the gap.
AT THIS POINT, we all know what happened to residential construction jobs in 2007 and 2008. From April 2006 to January 2011 the construction industry lost 2.3 million employees— 200,000 more people than live in Houston. When the construction market tanked, some of those workers entered the apartment industry to work in maintenance, according to Chris Pilato, vice president of construction and development for CAPREIT. Others moved to other industries, retired or left the United States altogether. Now, that development is booming, some of these maintenance technicians are moving
back to higher-paying construction jobs. For apartment developers, that is a good thing. But for property managers, it presents a challenge. On the West Coast, Vanessa Siebern, a vice president at FPI Management, an apartment management firm in California talks with construction companies and she says contractors are turning down work because they do not have enough labor. “You can swing a hammer and make $20 to $30 an hour,” Siebern says. “Our entry-level salary is definitely lower than that.” At Fogelman Management Group, Chief Administrative Officer Melissa Smith, also faces outside competition for maintenance person-
nel. “The HVAC companies are killing us,” Smith says. “They are hiring anyone they can and getting them certified. With so much development going on, anyone that can find a skilled worker is hiring them and paying them a lot more money.” While construction and HVAC companies are often able to offer maintenance technicians more money, they are not in the only threat. In areas where a lot of apartments are being delivered, management companies are poaching talent from their competitors. “There have been a bunch of units delivered in most of the markets we are active in,” says Dominic Rechichi, a principal at Pensam Devel-
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opment. “As these properties are built, there is a demand for quality maintenance supervisors and maintenance technicians. The field is spread thin.” Multiple Solutions The tactics for retaining and finding maintenance talent are about as lengthy as the number of threats faced. Hiring new maintenance technicians can be a challenge because there are not as many applicants as there are for onsite positions, according to Kevin Smith, director of recruiting for Camden. “The issue with maintenance is that we receive about one-third of the applicants that we do for office jobs,” Kevin Smith says. “I think it is because a lot of these guys do not have a social media presence. They are not well versed using on the Internet.” One solution is finding maintenance technicians within your organization. “We would rather train than hire because hiring is difficult,” Pilato says. “For us, it has been easier finding someone we can train to do the job we need.” The problem with training, of course, is that you could be improving an employee’s resume and they eventually leave you. “That is something we are cognizant of when we are training for air-conditioning certification and project managers,” Pilato says. “If you train someone to be HVAC-certified, what is to stop him or her from going to a company that pays a couple of dollars more?” CAPREIT understands that its wages need to be competitive while providing a great work environment to retain these employees. For other firms, outside-the-box solutions offer promise. Cortland Partners is using construction teams to help supplement its maintenance staff. “For properties under construction or in renovation, our teams would take over the makeready process for immediate move-ins, which allows the facilities team to focus on residents’ needs,” says Clay Landers, executive vice president of construction at Cortland. When all else fails, sometimes it is best to outsource hiring. The most difficult position for Western National to hire is the porter position. As such, Western National has begun an initiative with a third-party service to replace its open porter and housekeeper positions at some communities. “Recently, because of the lack of candidates that we have seen, it has benefited us,” says Scott Wickman, regional vice president at Western National. – Les Shaver
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On the Road with HAA Pearland Area Council Meeting Tuesday, July 18 at Discovery at Shadow Creek Ranch Sponsored by 1 TPI Construction & Painting Inc. Pearland Economic Development President Matt Buchanan made a return appearance for our July Pearland meeting. Managers enjoyed hearing about new businesses coming to the area as well as updates on infrastructure improvements. Bruce McClenny, ApartmentData.com, presented a market snapshot for the area as well. Thank you to Rebecca Slater and her team for hosting us at their property.
HAA IS REACHING OUT to better serve our members by bringing targeted networking and educational events to different parts of our 12-county service area. Contact strategic growth manager Lauren Turner at email@example.com to sign up for these FREE, management-only events where you can learn about issues affecting your area and network with your fellow managers. Want to host an event? We are looking for member properties to host Area Council meetings. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org. 28
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HAA is reaching out and hitting the road to better serve our members by bringing Fair Housing Seminars to different parts of our 12-county service area, presented by HAA General Counsel Howard Bookstaff. How should you deal with service animal requests? Criminal background screening? What do you do when you receive a complaint? Fair Housing is changing and you need to be up to speed. We’re bringing HAA General Counsel Howard Bookstaff to your area for this refresher course. Topics include: • Anatomy of a Fair Housing complaint: Navigating through the Fair Housing process. • How to respond to requests for accommodations and modifications. • Lions, tigers and bears, oh my! Taming assistant animal issues. • Too much stuff! Dealing with the hoarders. • Discriminating against criminals – Is that wrong? • Protecting children – How can that be wrong? • What’s on the horizon?
Don’t miss the next seminar: Richmond/Rosenberg Fair Housing Seminar September 13 8:30 a.m. – Noon Location: TBA Cost: $65 Pre-register $75 Door
For more information and to register, visit www.haaonline.org/educationoutreach/
HAA Roadshow Education Outreach: Fair Housing Seminars with Howard Bookstaff
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On the Scene with HAA It’s the Law Luncheon Friday, August 4 at the HAF Dinerstein Reed Prokop Education Center HAA General Counsel Howard Bookstaff presented an “It’s the Law” luncheon covering important legislative topics for apartment owners and property management professionals.
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On the Scene Photos by MARK HIEBERT, Hiebert Photography HAA “Wonka Bowl” Bowling Tournament Friday, July 14 at Copperfield Bowl Sponsored by 1 Gemstar Construction Development and
It was a world of pure imagination at this year’s HAA Bowling Tournament. 3. Best Team Costume – Better World LLC 4. Best Female Costume – Dru Phelps, FSI Construction 5. Best Male Costume – Kyle Brown, Milestone Management 6. 2017 Wonka Bowl Champs – Century A/C Supply 7. Second Place Team – First Choice “Wonka Choice” 8. Third Place Team – Arbor Contract Carpet/Marquette 9. Male MVP – Arnold Pedregon, Parawest 10. Female
MVP – Kirsten Glen, Century A/C Supply 4
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On the Scene Photos by MARK HIEBERT, Hiebert Photography HAA “Wonka Bowl” Bowling Tournament
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MATTERS David Aleman Maintenenance Supervisor of the Year, Mutliple Properties Relik Realty
You’ve been in the industry for 18 years. How did you get your start in the apartment business? I first started in this industry as summer help. When my family and I first moved to San Antonio, a property manager who I’ve known since I was a kid was running a property and asked me if I was interested in working at her property. At the time I was working at a grocery store, so I told her I’d give it a whirl and it snowballed into what it is today.
MORGAN TAYLOR, HAA Staff
Meet the top maintenance professionals in the Houston area, the 2017 HAA Honors Award winners David Aleman, Nick Gomez and Roberto Espinosa.
“Through my 10 years of doing this, communication and accountability are the two biggest things. You have to be able to hold your team and yourself accountable, but you also have to communicate to the proper people. I say this to everyone, no matter how long you’ve been in this industry, if you get stuck on something, ask for help. If not, you’re going to get frustrated and burnt out.” – David Aleman
When did you join the Relik Realty team? July 5, 2016. I left the property I was at in San Antonio to come to Relik. It was an opportunity for development and to grow into something more than just a standalone position. Kristin Settles (Relik Realty regional manager) worked at the same company I did in San Antonio. When she left, about a year later she contacted me to see if I wanted to come down and talk to Relik, and here I am. What does winning this award mean for your career? For me, it was nice because of the recognition, but I share it with the people who helped me. When you first started working at Relik, they just took over several rehab projects. You were the rehab supervisor, but you had to take over the maintenance supervisor/tech role, too. Tell me about that madness. The maintenance role was more of a challenge than the rehab role. As rehab supervisor, I would check the sites, make sure everything was running smoothly, that people were actually working, and communicate with the super to see what was going on. That was pretty much it unless something went awry. The maintenance role was hands-on and there was a lot of bouncing around. The nice thing was, all the properties were close together. The main thing was just keeping calm. Things will always go wrong, you just have to learn how to handle it and prevent it if you can. It all comes down to experience. I had experience in the past juggling two roles at the same time, but the construction aspect of it with Relik was a little bit of a learning curve, but I’ve already got it down. Kristin says that because of you the contractors were completing projects in a timely manner. How were you able to juggle both roles and do them so well? I believe, if you’re going to do it, then do it and stick to www.haaonline.org
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a timeframe. I got ahold of a contract agreement and I made the contractors sign it. That helped. I think the main thing was communication, because communication prior to me was lacking. Everyone has to be held accountable. Through my 10 years of doing this, communication and accountability are the two biggest things. You have to be able to hold your team and yourself accountable, but you also have to communicate to the proper people. I say this to everyone, no matter how long you’ve been in this industry, if you get stuck on something, ask for help. If not, you’re going to get frustrated and burnt out. We have to talk about you installing 40 A/C units in 20 days. How did you accomplish that? At other properties I have worked at, I was expected to replace four A/C units in one day. Because these properties had enough equipment to do all four in one day, it made it easier. Plus, I learned a good technique. When I needed to install those 40 A/C units for Relik, I had some of my own equipment and with my personal equipment and Relik’s equipment, I was able to do three a day. I’d start one, go to the next one and then the next one. Then, I’d come back, go inside, rip down the air handle inside, put a new one in, solder it up, vacuum and so on. I treated it like an assembly line. The staff was influential because they helped me get parts that were missing or whatever it might have been. As long as you have all the equipment and the drive to do it, you can get it all done.
“You have to show yourself and your strengths and the promotions will come. You have to look at yourself each day and see what your weakness was from yesterday might have been and work harder on that today.” – Nick Gomez
You are able to save your company a great deal of money by doing a lot of things in-house, such as plumbing and electric work. How did you learn to do those things yourself? Part of that came from the military base I worked at. I was working on houses, though; full-standing houses and they were generally 70 years old and older, so I had to get creative. I took what I learned from that and what I learned from newer developments and melted them together to come up with a solution. With electrical, it’s more technical and you have to learn how to read your meter. It was all hands-on learning, trail by error. Some of it was getting knowledge from other people who have more experience. Have your properties received the Blue Star certification yet? Yes, two of our properties are now Blue Star certified, and I am really excited about it. I’m working on the third one right now. I know you were really active in making sure that happened. Tell me about your involvement, what all you did to make it happen and why it was important to you. These properties are the first ever in Spring Branch to get certified – not just for Relik, but for all of the Spring Branch district multifamily. Me and the liaison for the police department worked together to make it happen. I would get the list of things that needed to be remedied, and me and the on-site staff would run through it. I would then do my own check. I would wait until it got dark to walk the property. I made sure the day before they were coming to walk the property and I was there the night before to make sure everything was checked out. We actually had to replace a light bulb that went out that morning. It was trying. And then with the other property, we had to work on the gates, cut down the shrubs and stuff like that. We’re working on the third now. It’s a big accomplishment for the teams that were in place, it’s a big deal for them, and it’s an even bigger deal for the communities to be the first in the Spring Branch district. How do you motivate your team to provide great service? I tell them get to work (laughs). I think me getting there before everyone else and them seeing me working is more beneficial than an encouraging poster. Seeing is better than speaking in this aspect. If you had a new maintenance tech walk in the door, what would your advice be? Stay busy. Take things in stride. Stay calm.
Nick Gomez Maintenance Supervisor of the Year, Single Property Gables Residential
Congratulations! How did you feel when you heard your name called? Excited! It made me feel very accomplished. You’ve been in the apartment industry for 26 years! That is a long time. How did you get started in this industry? I started at 21 as a porter. A friend referred me to my first industry job. What do you love most about your job? I love the interactions with the residents. It’s always great to meet someone new or talk to someone I have known for a while. How were you able to decrease maintenance expenses by $72 per unit in 2016? By repairing something before replacing it. The same goes for makereadies. Maybe we don’t need a full paint every time and a touch up will look just as good.
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Since 2015, you have overseen and completed 251 apartment renovations. What have you learned through this experience? It was a very big challenge, but it taught me that communication is key. Whether with the residents or the office staff, everyone needs to be on the same page. You’re very involved with helping children in other countries. You’re the founder of Centro de Restoration Verbo en Accion, an organization that has raised money for 80 kids in Nicaragua and 150 kids in Guatemala for school supplies and better schooling. Why is doing this so important to you? I feel like my childhood has helped me understand that I need to help these children. Growing up, my family had a hard time, whether it was with clothes, food or money. I figured that if I saw someone struggling, it would be my job to help them. I also feel like it keeps our community close. Since we are a non-profit and do not have any financial support, it is up to us to raise the money to help these children to have clothes and even to go to school through fundraisers, but mostly out of our own pockets.
Reviews of your property rave about the maintenance. How do you make sure your residents are having a great maintenance experience? I like to make sure that our maintenance requests are always completed promptly and that there is a high quality to the work that we do. The office staff also follows up to make sure that we did everything to each resident’s satisfaction. How do you approach training your maintenance technicians? By communication. Every morning we have a meeting to make sure everyone is clear on what we need to do that day and the order that we need to do it in to ensure that we prioritize the things that we need to get to first. How do you motivate your team to provide great service? First, I have a list of the top 10 things that should be followed each day based on the Gables guidelines. Each day we need to make sure that we are being the best we can on all 10 items. Secondly, with coffee, lunch and sometimes donuts. What advice would you give to a maintenance technician or porter who is just starting out in the apartment industry? I would like to start by saying that they have a bright future in this industry. Just look at me, I started from the bottom as a porter and worked my way up in each position. You have to show yourself and your strengths and the promotions will come. You have to look at yourself each day and see what your weakness was from yesterday might have been and work harder on that today.
“Be willing to learn and never think about the money, just focus on how much you’re going to learn. Be somebody who always says yes. You have to always say yes in order to provide customer satisfaction, and at the same time you have to kneel down and thank God that you have a job – Roberto Espinosa be grateful.” – Roberto Espinosa Maintenance Technician of the Year Greystar
Congratulations! How did you feel when you heard your name called? Were you surprised? Yes, I was surprised. It feels great. It’s a real privilege to work with a team and do all of these efforts so that people can recognize you for what you have done. It feels great. You’ve been in this industry for 15 years. How did you get your first job in the apartment business? Like everybody else, I was looking for a job. I started out as a porter and started learning; I didn’t last very long as a porter. I went from porter to painter to makeready to an assistant maintenance technician and right now I’m the lead maintenance. I love fixing things and making people happy. Whenever you fix something for residents, it makes them happy. You took a struggling community that failed annual maintenance inspections time after time and, because of your efforts, had it pass with an 85.5 percent score – the highest the property ever received. How did you make this happen? First of all, it’s a 1969 apartment property that had a lot of maintenance issues. I went back in history, found all the failed inspections and started fixing everything. It took me about four months to get the property ready not just for the inspections, but for the property’s longevity. It was a lot of work, but it had to be done. I had a lot of help from the property manager, and I have great team members. When Memorial Apartments was short-handed, you were able to carry the community by yourself with just a porter. How were you able to overcome that experience? I work for a company and I work
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for a good company named Greystar, and when you start working on a property, you have to treat it like it’s your own home. If you take care of your home, everything will run smoothly. Even if you are short-handed, you can start teaching people to make it easier on yourself. How long did that last for? About six months. Your efforts resulted in an average occupancy of 95.5 percent. Why is quality maintenance service so important to residents? Let’s say you buy a phone and the service isn’t good, you’ll move on and go another company that can provide you better service – it’s the same with residents. If you don’t provide good service to your residents, it doesn’t matter how low or high the rent is, if you don’t provide good maintenance and customer service, you will lose residents. The maintenance team has to smile, say good morning, good afternoon and thank the residents for calling. Sometimes, you have to apologize, too. You have to provide good customer service with every resident, no matter if they are mean, mad or happy. Memorial Apartments was purchased for redevelopment and was holding in lease down mode due to market conditions. Lori Lindley said you were able to beat the
budget by 2 percent and create a positive NOI. How were you able to achieve this? By trying to do everything in-house. It’s A plus for the residents because they don’t have to wait and for the company because it saves money. When you can save your company money, you’re proving to yourself and to everyone else that you can get it done. (Shows photo of an inhouse pool repair.) That was $17,000 I saved the company. I learned to do a lot in-house by asking questions. I would call my former maintenance supervisors who have more experience than I do and they taught me how to do the things I didn’t know how to. Greystar is a great company because it’s a team-member company. In the apartment industry, it’s so big, but at the same time it’s so small – everyone knows each other. What do you love most about your job? Making people happy. I enjoy seeing the smile on a resident’s face after everything is fixed and done. It just feels great to come home happy. What is the most challenging aspect of apartment maintenance? Trying to train and educate the residents on how to use their appliances and take care of their apartment. For example, some residents are under the impression that a dishwasher actually washes dishes when it only sanitizes them. A lot of the
time residents don’t know what not to put in the garbage disposal or what temperature to set the refrigerator at. Sometimes they don’t know that you can’t leave your A/C off all day and come home and expect it to cool your apartment in five minutes, especially when you live on the second or third floor. Sometimes you have to explain to residents that they can’t flush diapers down the toilet or that they can’t put dish soap in the dishwasher. It only takes five extra minutes to explain these things to a resident. You have to break it down to them. I want to start making videos on maintenance for residents, such as how to use and clean the garbage disposal, how to use a dishwasher and things like that. When a resident signs a lease, I want to be able to send each resident multiple links of videos to help them take care of their appliances. What advice would you give to a maintenance technician or porter who is just starting out in the apartment industry? Be willing to learn and never think about the money, just focus on how much you’re going to learn. Be somebody who always says yes. You have to always say yes in order to provide customer satisfaction, and at the same time you have to kneel down and thank God that you have a job – be grateful.
Rental Credit Reporting (RCR) was established in 1977 to solve screening problems the Houston Apartment Association founders felt plagued the local apartment industry. RCR has unsurpassed data on resident rental histories in the Houston region. The Houston Apartment Association and CoreLogic are partnered to expand RCR and include the following searches in one bundled report with immediate and unlimited inquiry access. National Landlord-Tenant Data • Texas Criminal Data • Terrorist Check • Sex Offender Search Move-in/Move-out Entry • Eviction Entry • Inquiry History • Quick and Easy • Cost Effective Immediate Access • Monthly Activity Report Subscribe Today – For approximately 32 cents per unit per month, RCR can help make sure you know just who your prospective residents are. * For properties 49 units or less, you have unlimited inquiries for $10 per month.
To subscribe or to learn more, call RCR at 713-595-0300, email email@example.com or visit www.haaonline.org. 42
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Investing in Involvement
The 2017 HAA Honors Awards Supplier of the Year Jacob Kunath talks about his career in the multifamily industry and his HAA involvement in this personal Q&A.
acob Kunath of Century A/C took home the 2017 HAA Honors Award for Supplier of the Year. This is a high honor for supplier members and it's only awarded to those who have a proven track record of dedication, support and involvement over an extended period of time. Jacob got involved with HAA almost immediately after accepting a job in the multifamily industry. His HAA involvement
includes the Ambassador ONE Society, Community Outreach Committee, Chili Cookoff Committee, Expo Exhibitor Committee, Century Club chair, Political Action Committee, Resident Relations Committee, Business Exchange Committee co-chair and so much more. He is the current Product Service Council treasurer, the incoming HAA Expo Chairman and a Leadership Lyceum graduate. Congratulations, again, Jacob. How did it feel to hear your name called as the supplier of the year? Total shock. Although, things throughout that day were weird. Freddie Rodriguez (Century A/C) called me and asked me to go to breakfast with him and that never happens. Then, Michelle Bridges-Pahl (Century A/C vice president of multi-housing sales) said Rick Luke (Century A/C president) was going to be at Honors. Then, my wife sends me a text during the day to tell me she and the kids are going to the lake to spend the day there. I tried to act normal, but in the back of my head there was a chance. Still, when they called my name it was a huge shock. I looked over at Michelle and she had a big grin on her face because she kept it from me the whole time. And then when I got off stage, Patrick Brothers (Century A/C), who was supposed to be in Corpus Christi, was there at the bottom of the stage with Freddie and my wife and kids. It was a really neat and awesome experience.
You’ve been involved with HAA for 10 years! And you kicked off your membership with the Ambassador ONE Society. Tell me about your first Ambassador meeting. The deal with Century A/C is, we’ve been involved forever. We’ve been an HAAmember for about 40-something years – its crazy. At Century, you are expected to be involved with the association. Your first job is to sell and your second job is HAA. Starting out in a sales role at Century, the expectations on the job side and the expectations on the volunteer side are two totally different things. I had to do well in sales to keep my job, but then I had back that up by volunteering with the association. Michelle told me that I absolutely had to be invited to the volunteer appreciation party at the end of the year, and the Ambassador One Society seemed like the most natural place to start. That was when I met Izzy Garza (Maintenance Supply Headquarters); we hit it off and we’ve been best friends ever since. Izzy isn’t the only friend you’ve made through HAA. Tell me about other lifelong friends you’ve made through the association. It’s such a big association, but it’s small when it comes to the supplier network. I’ve made lifelong friends with so many people who I can see hanging out with 20 years from now. The list of who all took me under their wing and showed me what’s up can go on and on, truly. From Michelle, Patrick and Billy Griffin (Camp Construction, former Century A/C vice president) to Izzy, Mark Park (AAA Plumbers) and Dean O’Kelly (Liberty Group), the list is endless. Do you think Century A/C Supply CEO and Founder Dennis Bearden influenced the emphasis on getting involved with the association? No doubt. When he started Century, the main focus of his business was multifamily.
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So, you actually didn’t start your career in multifamily. Tell me about your journey into the multifamily supplier world. (Laughs) I didn’t have a clue about air conditioning as a matter of fact. Michelle can attest to this – during my interview she asked me what I know about air conditioning. I said, “I like the way it makes me feel in the summer.” That was all I knew. Well, your lack of A/C knowledge certainly didn’t deter Michelle’s decision to hire you. She took a shot. I think I remember her telling me I was one of several who interviewed for my job, and Amanda Sherbondy (HAA vice president of membership and marketing) was one of them. The first time I met Amanda she told me, “You know I interviewed for that job, too?” Felt pretty good, after the fact, knowing that I was among some really qualified people. Michelle actually noted on your nomination form that despite not knowing a thing about HVAC, you were really fast to learn everything. How were you able to quickly learn? I just rode around with the other sales representatives as often as I could and leaned on them when I needed it. Century offers classes year-round so I also took classes every chance I could. One Saturday, a property of mine was doing an A/C unit install. I went and helped them install it from start to finish and that was very eye opening. Being able to lean on my coworkers was really beneficial. It’s great to have that support. Century is a big-time family. Our youngest sales person has been with us for 10 years. Once you’re in, you’re in. I think the family mentality starts with our leadership and has trickled all the way down from our CEO and Founder Dennis Bearden who started Century in 1973. Even our President Rick Luke started out as a salesman. Dennis treats his employees like family and because of that, Century definitely operates as a family. Did you face any challenges in the beginning of your multifamily career? Like I said, Michelle took a chance on me. Coming in with very little sales experience, I got a little distracted at the very beginning of working with Century trying to do and understand everything so quickly. My lack of HVAC knowledge was definitely a challenge, but so was getting familiar with how Century operates. Again, Century operates as a family and in my previous sales jobs I was on my own. I never had someone checking in on me, guiding me or mentoring me. Getting used to the company culture early www.haaonline.org
on was a struggle. It took a while for me to grow on them and I’m glad they stuck with me. It was a tough transition, but I’m thankful for it now no doubt about it. Challenges at work were hard to overcome at first, but there were never any challenges with the association because you guys make it so easy. You certainly overcame those challenges, to say the least. Michelle describes you as the “go-to-guy” in the Century office. She says a problem is always considered handled when it’s in your hands. How did you develop this skill? Growing up, there were seven of us all together in small-town Louisiana. One bathroom, four brothers, three sisters and a mom and dad. My dad was a southern Baptist preacher. It was a tough time and things were so tight around the house. There was never postponing anything – if something was brought to the family’s attention, it was handled immediately. At a very young age I always had the mentality that if someone gave me something to do, just do it, just handle it. There is no reason to put it off or not handle it. That is the way I’ve always been. Last year you hit an all-time sales record for Century. Tell me about that. Last year was a whirlwind. When it comes to A/C in Houston there is no such thing as a soft market, there is always a need for A/C in this city. I can only attribute that year to the relationships I’ve built over the last seven or eight years. Without people referring Century to their colleagues, I wouldn’t have been able to hit that record. What is the most important skill for a salesman to have? I don’t consider myself a salesman, I consider myself a friend. People buy from their friends. I like to show up, talk to people and if they happen to buy from me because they like me, I’m okay with that. What is your approach to establishing longlasting business relationships? I don’t walk onto a property looking to sell something. The great thing about this industry is it’s so huge and vast, but super small. A property manager you met yesterday at Property A, can be on Property C tomorrow. It’s very rare that a management company or a property doesn’t recognize Century. It’s very easy to form and maintain a relationship because of how long Century has been in the business, and you’ve met them a thousand times before on different properties. It’s a big network.
What is your favorite part of your job? Talking, making new friends and hanging out with the friends I have. We talked a little bit about Ambassadors, but we haven’t touched on why you are passionate about it. Because it was the very first committee I was a part of. I would not have been as successful as I have been if it wasn’t for the networking opportunities I got through Ambassadors. Izzy, Mark Park, Dean – there is a laundry list of people who mentored me. The current mentorship program we have with the Product Service Council wasn’t near as strong as it is today, but looking back there is no way I would have been able to do what I do without the mentorship I got. It was just a really easy group to fall into. You found your niche within HAA right away. When new members sign up, they typically want to be everywhere all the time. How can new members find their home within HAA? The only way to know if a committee or a group within HAA is right for you is to go. The reason I started going to Ambassadors was for the network. I felt like that was where I was going to get the most out of my membership in the very beginning, because you get to meet so many new people who are trying to do the same thing you’re doing – they’re trying to get their foot in the door somewhere, trying to find their place, trying to see if it works out, if the money is worth it and so on. Because that is where I started and where I got the most out of my start with HAA, I suggest new members to start there, too. It’s like we always say in this association, you get out what you put in. You also have to find that committee or group within HAA that fits your personality and that will get you the most out of your membership. The PSC has a mentorship program for new supplier members for people who want to be mentored. Because all of us on the PSC have been involved for so long, we can guide members to a committee we think will be the best fit for them. We typically meet for coffee or lunch and go over what they want out of their membership. We usually start with Ambassadors or the Community Outreach Committee – I keep going back to Ambassadors, but for the suppliers it’s really a no-brainer. The Community Outreach Committee is a great start too for most suppliers because it’s a mixture of management and suppliers. You get to work on a committee with September 2017
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a bunch of people you should probably know and you’re helping out the community. Can you tell me why it’s so important for a supplier to find a mentor within HAA? For new people, it is especially necessary because they don’t know how the association works, they don’t know who they need to talk to, where they need to be, what they need to go to and etc. I think I was lucky coming in with Michelle, Rick, Billy and Patrick to tell me what I needed to be doing. For the people who don’t have that support system, utilizing the PSC and the mentor program if they truly want to be successful in this industry, is a necessity. Otherwise, you’re going into it blind, you’re going into a management company’s office and you have no idea who to talk to because you haven’t broken the ice with anyone in that company yet. It’s just an easier way to get to your end goal rather than doing it solo. You’re the treasurer for the PSC this year, so tell me a little bit about the PSC and how an HAA-member gets on that council. You really have to earn it. A couple years ago we made it a requirement to have your CAS (Certified Apartment Supplier) certification, because that shows us a level of dedication and it shows who really is interested in becoming more involved with HAA, especially on the mentorship side. The PSC is for the suppliers who want to get the absolute most out of their membership and who want to be able to help the people who are just coming in get the most out of their membership. It’s a really great go-to group. What is it like after 10 years of HAA involvement and mentorship, getting to give back and now be a mentor? There is no way I would be here without the people who mentored me. I feel obligated to take someone on and show them what all I had to go through to get where I am to prove that it is possible. It’s a duty, I really truly feel it is. Throughout your 10 years of involvement, you have been on nearly every committee HAA has to offer, which is a pretty big accomplishment. (Laughs) I really have. Have you heard my Resident Relations Committee story? Well, just a few years into my membership, I called Susan Hinkley (HAA vice president and general manager) and told her I was interested in the Resident Relations Committee. She told me there was an opening and to come check it out. I walk into the room they were meeting in and there was only six people in there. Matilde Luna (HAA director of resident relations) sent me a
huge packet of stuff. I didn’t even open it, I just brought it in an envelope. I’m sitting there as they’re going over all these cases and I was thinking to myself, “What in the world?” As soon as that meeting ended I went into Susan’s office and I told her I didn’t think that was the committee I was talking about. “I wanted resident relations,” I said to her. She assured me that was it. “No, the fun one, the one with food drives,” I said. She goes, “Oh, you meant community relations.” (Laughs) I didn’t think I was a good fit for resident relations, but I stayed on it for the whole year. I think that is a great example of how easy it is to get lost in this association. For someone who is new to the association, what advice can you offer? Get involved, get your company involved, join different committees and so on. Did you see Ryan Weis’ (Impact Floors) shirt at the HAA Bowling Tournament? It said, “You joined HAA and you’re not involved? Tell me how that is working for you!” I think we need to mass produce those shirts because it’s true. You can’t just pay your dues and expect good things to happen. You’re in total control of your success. You have to be involved and get to work to make your membership work for you. Having been on every committee, what has been your favorite committee? Or favorite event? It’s always a compliment to be asked to be on a committee. The Chili Committee is easily my favorite just because it’s a lot of work, but it’s a lot of fun at the end of it. It’s just a blast. My favorite event … Can I say bowling because it’s inside? (laughs) Bowling is my favorite because it’s a relaxed atmosphere and you get the opportunity to walk up and down the lanes to say hello to people you haven’t seen in a while. It’s a really fun “hey-how-ya-been” type of event. When people talk about big-dog suppliers, your name is amongst them. How have you been able to create a name for yourself amongst HAA members? First off, that is super humbling. Being totally honest, I have no clue. Just like being asked to be on a committee, it’s really humbling and I’m grateful for that, but I don’t see myself as one of those people. And you never say no to HAA! This association has given me so much, I feel like it’s my duty to give back. Do you have any plans as the Expo committee chair for 2018? What is next for you in the association world? Well, this year will be the first year without a theme. Being the first to do this new deal, I hope we can blow it out of the
water. My goal is to beat every other committee chair in every way possible. You name it, I want to do it. Outside of Century A/C and HAA, you coach baseball for your sons, you serve on the missions committee at your church and you’re involved with Camp Hope. Tell me about your outside volunteer-work. We are blessed as suppliers, we truly are. When I grew up, we had nothing. We would have to jump into dumpsters to find cans just to get money. To go from there to where I am now, I feel like it’s a blessing to give back. The missions committee at my church, the role there is we go to peoples’ houses and fix their homes. Whether it be flooring or a leaky roof, stuff like that. It’s just something my church has always done, and my wife and I feel strongly about getting our boys involved too. They’re scrapping paint outside the house while we’re fixing the inside. It truly is a joy to be able to do that. As for Camp Hope, our veterans give everything for us so I’m happy to be able to help out in any way I can. When you talk to David Maulsby (PTSD Foundation executive director) and Doug Brown at Greystar, you can hear the passion they have for Camp Hope in their voices. And when you see someone that passionate about something and they asked you to be involved with it, you can’t help but want to get on the same train and feel the same drive and feel the same passion. And coaching your sons’ baseball team? That is a job within itself. It is definitely a job, but I grew up playing baseball. I love that my boys love baseball, which keeps me going with it. If they didn’t love it, no big deal. My boys are 11 and seven now, but when they were younger and playing T-ball, it was crazy. They’d be sitting on the bases, drawing circles in the dirt, picking grass out of the field and you’d be trying to get little Johnny to run. If you want to learn the virtue of patience, coach a team. It will test you to no end. What is the best piece of advice you’ve received? Be a better person today than you were yesterday. My twin brother told me that. He has been my biggest fan and biggest critic my whole life. I’m so thankful to have him and my wife Courtney. There’s no way I’d be as successful as I am without her. This is going sound cliché, but she really is my rock and I’m thankful that we can show our boys, Jaxon and Dane, what it’s like to have such an awesome support system at home to match what I have with my Century family.
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Management tips for maintenance supervisors. By
SUSAN WESTON, The Susan Weston Company
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he maintenance team is probably the most critical element in a successful customer experience at an apartment property. So, when it’s not working – it shows in the numbers and morale. What do you do about those problem people? Accept the call to lead your team wisely and professionally. Use these leadership tools to be the power of one. Let’s look at some of the typical problems and what you can do to respond. Supervise a Group or a Team? A work group is a bunch of people that report to work at the same place every day and take a paycheck from the same boss, but have little in common. A work team is focused on the same goal and sees the value of everyone’s unique contribution – the make-ready tech, the maid, the groundskeeper – they each have roles to play but they depend on each other. Together they maintain the property. To solve this, sit down and share the property goals, ask each team member how they can make a difference and model how they depend on each other Porter: “By keeping our grounds neat, the pool area orderly and delivering notices to the right doors, you show how residents how we care about them.” Make-Ready: “By completing your work on time and cleaning up after yourself, you make the maid’s final clean easier and we can get new residents moved in quicker.”
Got Whiners? Almost every staff has a whiner. You know who they are – they can’t wait to go home, haven’t had a day off in forever, always have something that hurts or has a resident story of misery you can’t top! This is especially bad on the maintenance staff when you work so hard and frequently interact with residents. Whiners share four unique traits: 1. They are the victim: Always! Not responsible for their own behavior – ever. 2. What’s in it for me: They are the center of their universe 3. Apathetic: Always looking for ways to avoid work, they hate it when you monitor or police their work! 4. Hyper critical: The company is wrong; the boss is wrong, you are wrong. Here are eight tactics you can try to manage this negative influence on your team: 1. Be remote: Stay away from them – don’t be rude – but steer clear (whiners love audiences). 2. Be in agreeance: Give them a “you may be right” and change the subject to something you need to go do or check. It will confuse them. 3. Be calm: They love to see you upset. Hide it. 4. Be direct: Tell them, “Your complaining bothers me, I need to go do …” or try, “It bothers me when all you ever discuss is negative things.” Let them know it’s not OK. 5. Be first: If they always complain about their weekend, jump in first thing Monday
morning with a “So I’ll bet your weekend really sucked!” Their likely reaction will be to defend it and they may quit complaining. 6. Be aware: It may be that the employee’s whining is a security blanket – they protect themselves with it. If the work gets done to your expected level, so be it. 7. Be responsive: Ask for the complaints in writing. This helps because often they can’t come up with exactly what’s wrong. And most don’t want any formal documentation. 8. Be curious: Ask them, “So what would you like to have happen?” Give them your permission to fix as much as they can. Many have no idea what they really want. Overbearing People These are those team members who talk the loudest, have the “most experience,” “been there, done that,” don’t think that anyone else has anything of value to offer. A maid who has “seen it all.” A porter who has years of exterior grounds keeping. A make-ready tech who has turned hundreds of units. When others do try to offer up a suggestion, they are ridiculed, ignored or refuted. These people can control the entire mood of the team. I once knew an assistant maintenance technician who literally drove away the rest of the team, including the new supervisor, because he threw his know-it-all attitude everywhere. Don’t let this happen to you. Here is what to do: 1. Use the staff meeting to reinforce the idea that everyone has a say.
Maintenance Supervisor www.haaonline.org
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2. Get agreement from the over-bearer that others must learn as well. 3. The next time it happens, pull them aside, acknowledge their years of experience, but ask them to be patient and allow others to learn.
Feuding Team Members Two team members can’t stand being around each other, much less work together. The make-ready tech and assistant maintenance used to work well together, but now it’s completely out of control. A maid is avoiding the groundskeeper. Worse, they are telling stories and complaining about each other so you can’t tell who is right or wrong or what is going on. Here is what to do: 1. You may have to help them open up. First, speak with each individual separately. 2. Be careful that there might be underlying harassment or other workplace issues.
your team is facing a huge project, such as heavy make-readies, retrofits and rehab items, occupancy goals and etc. Here is what to do: 1. Be careful about acting on “he said, she said” stories. Better to call this employee out if you heard it yourself. Reluctant Participants 2. Focus on his or her job performance. These are the opposite of overbearing peoOften you will see reduced productivity and ple. These are the staff members who are lontardiness on tasks. ers and introverts. Often, they work well alone 3. Be specific if you witness the undermining. and prefer it that way. They are either over4. Consider assigning them a very visible whelmed or are unaffected by over-bearers – task. Something that if they choose to ignore it but either way, you get limited interaction. – everyone will see. Maybe it’s an assistant tech who has never had Finally, be aware you can have team players the opportunity to voice his own opinwho present multiple problems. ion. It could be a tech who was harassed Stay focused on supervision! Look on her last job and so she just stays for performance and their impact If a supervisor treats the team badly or quiet. Whatever the case, these people on the rest of the team. Your team without much care, then your team is can add so much to your group. Here is makes a financial difference at the what to do: property – don’t let problem people going to respond with lower levels of 1. Use the staff meeting to ask for cost you. performance and satisfaction. their thoughts. 2. If it’s a project or a specific goal, Taking Care of YOU? Residents will see the property as just divide it into roles where he or she gets You juggle a lot of balls, often go another place to live for a while. When an equal part. unrecognized and may have little 3. When you know they have had a control over your day or your daily that happens, residents expect more similar experience, ask them for their duties. But you do have the opporfrom a price point. They also tend to insight – “Mary, you went through this at tunity to take care of yourself as a your last job. What do you think?” professional! Here are seven enebe harder on frontline staff members, mies that can get in your way: and they are not likely to renew. Discounts and Flops 1. Giving in to your own demons: Yep, these are the complaining You’re not perfect, never will be, but Residents stay with a community for a Charlies, the negative Nellies. There don’t give in. Manage yourself – variety of reasons that go way beyond always seems to be a dark cloud over your strengths and your weaknesstheir heads and they bring it with them es. A pro knows both. low prices. They constantly evaluate wherever they go. Residents are always 2. Giving in to the chaos around the property, service and you. a huge challenge, working conditions you: Every day workload can divert aren’t fair and their personal needs are your attention. Take the time to never met. They always have somestep back and think about how you thing negative to say, a bad experience and a 3. If you think there might be, get your manage the load. “it will never work” attitude. They ridicule supervisor or human resources involved. 3. Misreading or missing cultural clues: Yes, statements and ideas, ignore positive rein4. Conduct a meeting with both employees, your company has a culture. Do you fit in? Get forcement and can cause open hostility on a tell them they are valued, but they must settle in step, be credible, then try and make changes team. As I mentioned above – these are often their issue(s) because it has a negative effect you see needed. whiners. Here is what to do: on the work. 4. Misfiring with your own manager: If you 1. Listen for anything positive buried in their 5. Ask each person separately what are not in sync, this is deadly! If there is a gap negativity. For example, if it never worked they want the other to do – bring together – reach out, take responsibility for asking before, ask what would have made it work? to resolve. for meetings, how to prioritize, what the 2. Resist your own urge to ignore them. They manager needs from you. Asking is not a are hard to listen to! Undermining People sign of ignorance. 3. Privately, point out how negative they are Worst of all, these are people who look like 5. Overlooking others on and off site: Reach – they may not know. and act like they are team players, but behind out regularly to other supervisors, reach out to 4. If their negativity is hurting the team outeveryone’s back, they bad-mouth and ridicule your own staff for their ideas and what they put, tell them their behavior is having a bad the work or duties and underperform. They are need from you. These are the threads of the influence on the team. Be specific and tell often back-biters and will sabotage or simply fabric that connect you to others. them to stop or risk discipline. ignore assignments. This is especially bad if 6. Alienating your own team: Never be the
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big boss with the big head or inflated idea of how cool you are. You are little without your team. Seek their support 7. Forgetting your own plans: Where are you headed as a maintenance professional? How is this particular job a part of that? This is a fantastic model for your team! So What is the Big Deal? Bottom line – the better you lead, the better you communicate to your team that satisfaction and good service is the only way to perform, the more likely you will have satisfied customers AND satisfied employees. Research shows there is a direct relationship between customers and employees and pay back when your maintenance team is happy and clear on how you and the company want them to treat residents – they actually provide a better customer experience. If the team is unhappy or unclear, they will take poorer care of the residents. If residents are happy with the property’s product or services, they actually create a more favorable environment for your team to work in. Conversely, if residents are dissatisfied, they will take it out on frontline employees – your team. If a supervisor treats the team badly or without much care, then your team is going to respond with lower levels of performance and satisfaction. Residents will see the property as just another place to live for a while. When that happens, residents expect more from a price point. They also tend to be harder on frontline staff members, and they are not likely to renew. Residents stay with a community for a variety of reasons that go way beyond low prices. They constantly evaluate the property, service and you. The big deal is loyalty and renewals make a huge financial difference. It costs five times as much to sign a new resident as it does to keep an existing one. They may not be telling you why they are moving out, but 68 percent of all customers stop doing business with us because of how they were treated. According to Satisfacts, surveys of residents prove that the fewer the outstanding work orders, the higher the level of satisfaction and the higher the likelihood to renew. Here is what the resident identified as top maintenance practices: • Maintenance cleaned up the area • Job done right the first time • Office followed-up on
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Move-out cost per unit
Assuptions Average rent
Average vacancy loss days Average concessions
Calculations Vacancy loss
Leasing staff time/loss
Marketing/advertising/rental/referal locator fees/commissions
Hard turnover costs (painting, carpet repairs, cleaing, miscellaneous costs)
Maintenance staff time/cost Total cost of turn
$765 $165 $2,363 Satisfacts Research
• Service done quickly • Service was high quality Satisfacts proved that when these conditions existed, the results were dramatic: • “Very likely to Renew” rose from 43 percent to 48 percent • “Unlikely to Renews” dropped from 20 percent to 13 percent Improved maintenance = improved satisfaction = improved renewals. Satisfacts customers with 96 percent or more Satisfaction ratings have a turnover rate 17 percent below the NAA national average. Nationally, in 2013 turnover was 54 percent overall for individually metered garden apartments (same for Dallas and Fort Worth). What would a 20 percent reduction look like for you? What was the turnover at your property last year? If we just use the average turnover above and you have a 200-unit property, that means 108 units turned over. A 20 percent drop would mean about 22 fewer
units would move-out. So What’s the Big Deal? Nothing really – just a potential savings to your property of $51,896! Above is a handy chart to use for yourself. Drop in your own average rent and average days vacant to customize it for your property. We have completed one here for the average rent currently in Fort Worth $801 (in Dallas its $923) we also used an estimated time from move-out to new move-in of 15 days. And no concessions offered – so this is a lean number.
other negative influences on the team. • Taking care of yourself and what you need as a professional. • Realizing that you are only as good as your team and how you manage the various personalities and needs of each member can make or break property performance. And now you know that you exert some very real and significant impact on the property’s bottom line. Make the decision to make the difference.
Tying It All Together As a maintenance supervisor, you may not have all kinds of power and authority. You may not be authorized to hire and fire your own team, but you always have the ability to supervise and lead well. That means: • Making sure your team is really a team, rather than just a few people who work at the same place – you set the pace. • Protecting the team from whiners and
Susan Weston, CAM, CAPS, operates The Susan Weston Company, a consulting and training firm. Susan is an HAA APPLE speaker and will be leading the management session on Oct. 25 titled “Make the Move from Peer to Supervisor.” For more information, see Page 22, and to register visit www.haaonline.org.
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Here is an easy list of tips to share with your residents and/or on-site staff to remedy and prevent plumbing issues. By
CANDIS MOHR, AAA Plumbers
hat kind of plumbing issues do multifamily properties face? The truth is, multifamily properties can face some of the same issues that any singlefamily property may face. The difference is that one issue can have a domino effect on other residents or other areas of the community. Below, you will find some helpful tips that you can share with your residents and/or on-site staff to avoid potential complications. Helpful Tip No. 1: Know where the hot and cold water shut-off valves are located for each building, as well as the water heater, boiler, etc. It is not the time to try and locate the valve to help mitigate water damage once you have a leak on your hands. Helpful Tip No. 2: Know where your gas meters are and how to turn them off in the event of a gas leak. A good rule of thumb is if you detect a faint smell of gas, call your plumber; if you can hear the gas leak, evacuate the area immediately and call the gas company. Helpful Tip No. 3: If your property is on a boiler system, it’s important to know where the hot water loop is and which sections the circulating pumps service. This will help the on-site team offer better service to the residents when there is an issue with the boiler. Helpful Tip No. 4: If your property has a newer LoNox style of domestic hot water boiler, it is important that the on-site maintenance team cleans the air filters monthly. Dirty filters restrict the necessary combustion air and can lead to a dirty burn. This then leads to the boiler sooting up and failing earlier and more often. Components that fail due to lack of maintenance are often not covered under the manufacturer’s warranty. Helpful Tip No. 5: Implement resident social functions or distribute pamphlets that include education regarding fats, oils and greases in the drain lines. Residents pouring FOGs down the drain is huge contributor to sewer stoppages. Encourage residents to put FOGs in a container once they are cooled and toss in the trash. Inform residents not to use acidic based drain cleaners from the big box stores to clear stoppages. Repeated use of these types of cleaners eat at the drain pipes and fittings and will cause leaks. Helpful Tip No. 6: Run water through garbage disposals on a regular basis, even if you don’t have anything to grind up. The parts inside the disposal can freeze up and rust, and leftover food inside can harden leading to odors and clogs. Grinding up citrus fruit peels every once in a while will help clean the blades and eliminate odors.
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Helpful Tip No. 7: Use cold water when running the garbage disposal. Hot water can soften the food you are trying to grind up and make it stick to the sides of the disposal. Cold water will help harden it and make it easier to grind up and push out the drain pipe. Helpful Tip No. 8: If a resident reports an odor coming from his or her dishwasher, the culprit is often a drain hose connected to the garbage disposal that is not properly installed. The drain hose from the dishwasher should make a high rising loop above the inlet to the side of the garbage disposal. Without the loop, food waste from the disposer is easily pushed into the dishwasher drain hose and down towards the dishwasher. Helpful Tip No. 9: You can use food coloring to detect a “silent” toilet leak. Sometimes it’s easy to detect a leaking toilet when you can hear water running. However, a silent toilet leak can flow directly from the tank into the bowl undetected. You can add eight to 10 drops of food coloring in the tank and wait about 10 to 15 minutes. Check the bowl. If there is colored water in the bowl, you have a leak. Helpful Tip No. 10: Train your on-site teams about the importance of not pouring and/or washing anything down the storm drains. This is particularly important after a sewer stoppage that leaves behind solid waste. Not only does it contaminate the water flowing to our rivers and oceans, it also brings a hefty fine and possible jail time if caught. Have your maintenance teams certified in cleaning up sewer waste or contract with a supplier that is licensed to do so. Remember that educated residents and on-site personnel can help you avoid costly repairs and headaches. Share these 10 helpful tips with your multifamily community today! As a dedicated HAA-member, AAA Plumbers was the red-carpet sponsor at the 2017 HAA Honors Awards. AAA has been in business since 1984. They take pride in delivering the most comprehensive range of plumbing services for their apartment/multifamily clients. Available 24-hours a day, seven days a week, AAA will provide you with phone support, emergency services and access to their on-call supervisor. AAA offers free estimates for their lineup of multifamily plumbing services and delivers the best possible solutions for their clients throughout the Houston-area. For more information visit www.aaaplumbers.com.
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On Site with ABODE
Photos provided by Lafayette Plaza
“On Site with ABODE” features a randomly selected member property each month. This month, ABODE recognizes the 2017 Honors Award property winners. “On Site with ABODE” will give you a closer look at the winning properties in the coming months. Property: Lafayette Plaza Apartments Owner/Management: William Henson/Allied-Orion Group Location: 7320 Clarewood Drive, near Bellaire Boulevard and US 59. Units: 122 Built: 2015 Web: www.lafayetteplaza.com Interesting features: Lafayette Plaza Apartments offers active seniors an independent lifestyle at affordable prices. Located in southwest Houston, this beautiful property offers one and two-bedroom apartment homes that are comfortable and convenient for their residents.
Amenities that include a fitness center, a pool, a business center, a theatre room and even an on-site hair salon create a suitable living experience for the residents who choose this community as their home. Lafayette Plaza is also a pet-friendly property. Inside each apartment are stainless steel, electric appliances, washer and dryer connections, a built-in desk with shelving, walk-in closets, cable availability, two-tone paint and spacious floor plans. Select homes even have wood flooring. Residents have 10 floorplans to choose from, including two wheelchair accessible floorplans. This community’s location is close to the Memorial Southwest Hospital and there are a handful of golf courses nearby. The Metro bus stop is right across the street, making public transportation a breeze. This property won the 2017 Honors Award for Senior Living because of its outstanding design and community events. This property is so popular, there is a continuous waiting list. I wasn’t expecting it at all. I was surprised that they nominated me!” he said, laughing. “ I’ve been with this business for 15 years. I never expect anything. For me, if I get my job done or get it right, I’m satisfied with that. I don’t need recognition. As long as my resident and my management and the owner are happy, I’m happy. It was a good experience, though, feeling that way. I didn’t know that someone was watching!”
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On Site with ABODE
Photos provided by Pearl Washington
2016 NEW DEVELOPMENT Mid-Rise
Property: Pearl Washington Owner/Management: Morgan Group Location: 5454 Washington Ave. Units: 322 Built: 2016 Web: www.pearlwashingtonapts.com Interesting features: Located in the vibrant area of Washington Avenue packed with trending restaurants, craft beer taverns, wine bars, sports lounges and bars, this community is perfect for someone who is looking for a home in the midst of an exciting neighborhood. This property is walking distance from many bars, restaurants and even Memorial Park, which is just a half mile walk from the community. This property’s location isn’t the only thing that is vibrant. The ambiance has a distinct style that is both modern and captivating. It has the atmosphere of a high-end
hotel, but all of the amenities of a luxury community. Community amenities include a private meeting room with video conferencing, a social lounge with a pool table and old school video arcade machines (yes, that means Pac-Man), an athletic center with Peloton Bikes, a dual yoga and spin room, a Las Vegas-style pool with sunshelves (unfortunately not pictured), bike storage and so much more. Apartment homes come in spacious one, two and three-bedroom layouts and there are even penthouse units available. Inside each unit, residents are spoiled with bluetooth enabled speakers, expansive balconies, USB charging ports, high ceilings, designer appointed fixtures and finishes, tubs and separate showers, spacious closets with built-in shelving and much more.
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business for 15 years. I never expect business for 15 years. I never expect get myexpecting job doneit at all. I was anything. For me, if I get my job done I wasn’t expecting it at all. I was anything. For me, ifI Iwasn’t satisfied with I that that. they nominated me!”or heget it right, I’m satisfied with that. I surprised that they nominated me!”or heget it right, I’m surprised As long as“ my said, laughing. I’ve been with this don’t need recognition. As long as my said, laughing. “ I’ve been with this don’t need recognition. the I never expectresident and my management and the business for and 15 years. business for 15 years. I never expectresident and my management owner are happy, I’m happy. It was a owner are happy, I’m happy.For It was anything. me,aif I get my job done anything. For me, if I get my job done good good experience, though, feeling that or get it right, I’m satisfied with that. I experience, though, feeling that or get it right, I’m satisfied with that. I way. I didn’t know that someone was way. I didn’t knowdon’t that someone was need recognition. As long as my don’t need recognition. As long as my watching!” watching!” resident and my management and the resident and my management and the
On Site with ABODE
Photos provided by Hanover Southampton
2016 NEW DEVELOPMENT High-Rise
Property: Hanover Southampton Owner/Management: The Hanover Company Location: 5122 Morningside Drive, located in the center of Rice Village near US 59 Units: 206 Built: 2016 Web: www.hanoversouthampton.com Interesting features: Hanover Southampton is Houston’s first luxury, high-rise apartment community built in the Rice Village neighborhood of Houston. This 12-story community offers iconic views of Rice University, Hermann Park, the Texas Medical Center and downtown Houston. Rice Village is a walkable, high-end outside shopping center with a selection of award-winning restaurants. Hanover Southampton was designed to offer a sophisticated living experience. Amenities include a 24-hour concierge, a 10,000 square foot rooftop lounge, a catering kitchen with a private dining room, a controlled-access parking garage, a clubhouse with HDTV and lounge seating, MW Cleaners valet dry cleaning service, a water wall garden, a private theater with surround-sound, a rooftop pool with sunbeds and poolside cabanas and so much more. Each apartment home on average is 1,432 square feet in size with details and features one would find in a custom home. From floor to ceiling windows, coffered ceilings in the entry ways, bedrooms and bathrooms to wet bars and wine fridges, the details in each apartment home create an elegant living space for each resident. Other apartment home amenities and details include built-in computer desks with granite desktops, chef-grade stainless steel appliances, double wall ovens and cooktops, framless cabinets with soft closing hinges, floor to ceiling windows with Solar Shades, media rooms and studies, powder rooms and terraces, rain-style showerheads, slab granite and quartize countertops and so much more. This community is also pet-friendly and offers a pet washing station for their residents and their furry friends. www.haaonline.org
I wasn’t expecting it at all. I was surprised that they nominated me!” he said, laughing. “ I’ve been with this business for 15 years. I never expect anything. For me, if I get my job done or get it right, I’m satisfied with that. I don’t need recognition. As long as my
I wasn’t expecting it at all. I was surprised that they nominated me!” he said, laughing. “ I’ve been with this business for 15 years. I never expect anything. For me, if I get my job done or get it right, I’m satisfied with that. I don’t need recognition. As long as my
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Legislative, continued from Page 9 jurisdictions in our area require carbon monoxide alarms in units with gas appliances or enclosed garages in the same building (Houston does not). Most jurisdictions also require large, older apartment buildings to be retrofitted with monitored, pull-station fire alarms. Houston requires this only for hotel-style properties where the units open into enclosed hallways. Don’t turn a vacant unit into a maintenance shop – your “R-2” occupancy classification means that unit is for residential use only. Habitability: Houston apartments are scrutinized by a number of different departments, but primary responsibility falls to Habitability Inspection. Here are the most common maintenance-related violations they see. • Make sure your property is registered (free at http://www.houstonmultifamily.org/), and that you have a print-out of your registration. Same with your certificates of occupancy (one for each building). Make sure your boiler inspection and gas test (if your property has natural gas) are up to date. • Make sure you have your “311 sign.” Under the Habitability Ordinance, every property is required to post a "NOTICE TO ALL RESIDENTS" legibly typed or printed in a font 28 points or larger, in both English and Spanish, the substance of which notice is as follows: "IF ANY CONDITION of this building CREATES A HAZARD to human safety or health, REPORT THE CONDITION to the building's manager or owner. You also may report the condition to the City of Houston by calling the City's Service Helpline at 311." • Make sure all your sewer cleanout caps are in place. Always have some spare caps on hand in case one disappears. • Check electrical boxes. Make sure panels are intact and that they're not locked. They need to be properly grounded. • Check your pools. Self-closing gate latches need to be working, and pool lighting needs to be protected with a GFCI. • Speaking of GFCI, you need one anywhere you plug in a soft drink machine – a lot of owners miss that. • Habitability doesn't measure outdoor lighting, but if you have a light socket, there needs to be a bulb in it. • If you have large laundry rooms with underground lint traps, make sure the traps are serviced regularly. They need to be pumped out from time to time to work properly. • Cracked, chipped and missing siding needs to be repaired or replaced. Bad siding exposed to rain over time leads to water incursion and structural problems.
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Introducing HAA’s NEW MEMBERS
All is Good/Holleyvale Homes Yogesh Patel 423 Hollyvale Drive Houston, TX 77060 314-960-0932 Hollyvale Homes Apartments
New JL Investments Inc. Jenny Liang P.O. Box 25005 Houston, TX 77265 713-899-8989 Hamilton Court Apartments New JL Investments Inc Properties
AMG Raintree LLC Shney Kalmanson 8033 Ridgeway Ave. Skokie, IL 60076 847-701-5544 Raintree Apartments
Peter Ngo Peter Ngo 4707 Ten Sleep Lane Friendswood, TX 77546 713-624-0624
Drive Guru LLC Himanshu Upadhyaya 533 Wisteria St. Bellaire, TX 77401 843-530-7804
Pidera Investment Bonnie Pfrenger 14 Havergate Drive Spring, TX 77389 402-672-0861
ECI Management LLC Emily Mask 2100 Powers Ferry Road #200 Atlanta, GA 30339 770-952-1400 The Columns at Shadow Creek Ranch
Richard Wilkerson Richard Wilkerson 10930 Beinhorn Road Houston, TX 77024 832-429-2238
Frank Kalkattawi Frank N. Kalkattawi 13131 Old Windmill Drive Richmond, TX 77407 713-305-6209 Galt Properties LLC Jeff Gorley 28510 Stonestead Drive Katy, TX 77494 806-786-3461 Referred by William Acuna H-Town Ventures LLC Craig Finnigan 8322 Shoregrove Drive Humble, TX 77346 832-326-0250 John Moon John Y. Moon 6830 Arborwood Lane Sugar Land, TX 77479 832-335-6356 Jose Cruz Jose L. Cruz 5403 Nautilus Lane Baytown, TX 77521 281-745-0151 Karen Lambert Karen Lambert 13831 Campwood Lane Cypress, TX 77429 832-444-3221
Ron Thompson Ron Thompson 10905 Roaring Brook Lane Houston, TX 77024 713-444-9093 Referred by Jerry Turner Royal Wildewood Manor Apartments Shea Wallace 201 Dixie Drive Clute, TX 77531 979-265-9604 Royal Wildewood Manor Apartments Shefali Aggarwal Shefali Aggavwal 3139 W Holcombe Blvd. #672 Houston, TX 77025 832-273-4258 Topher Investments LLC Christopher Cox 4818 McDermed Drive Houston, TX 77035 832-802-4943 Referred by Robert Lopes, NALP, CAM, CAPS, AIT
Wolfechrist Enterprises LLC Richard Eden 2004 Yupon St. Houston, TX 77006 713-838-6155 949 Teetshorn 1465 Missouri
ACT Security Group Johnny Atkinson 11250 Charles Road Houston, TX 77041 281-970-7768 Security Guard/Patrol Service, Courtesy Patrol Referred by Kristin McLaughlin, CASE
Coastal Valet Trash Services LLC Kathy White 1302 Waugh Drive #861 Houston, TX 77019 844-455-3500 Garbage Collection, Trash Service Valet
Albi Towing Services Chaim Albi 4620 N Braeswood Blvd. #456 Houston, TX 77096 713-280-8581 Towing Service, Wrecker Service
Energy Ogre Laura Thornquist 24 Greenway Plaza #725 Houston, TX 77046 832-304-7062 Energy Conservation/Management, Utility Management Referred by Kate Good
Apartment Guardian Steve Bonaventure 271 Wachusett St. Boston, MA 02130 978-998-2574 911 Phone Service, Security Consulting Service Referred by Aaron Potier
Garbage Grabbers Valet Trash Kacie West 700 Lavaca St. #1400 Austin, TX 78701 832-334-3931 Recycling Services, Trash Hauling, Trash Service - Valet, Waste Reduction/Disposal/Recycling
Aqua Art Pool Finishes Damien Garza 2610 Michaux St. Houston, TX 77009 713-303-2884 Swimming Pool Contractors, Swimming Pool Repair & Resurfacing
GreenTech Roofing Inc. Stephen Marino 13020 Murphy Road #G Stafford, TX 77477 713-675-7663 Roofing Consultants, Roofing Contractors
Atlas Foundation Repair Eric Ewing 8945 Solon Road Houston, TX 77064 713-641-4844 Foundation Contractors, Foundation Repair, Plumbing Contractors, Concrete Contractors
Increte of Houston Stacey Cooper 12763 Capricorn St. #700 Stafford, TX 77477 281-499-3990 Concrete Contractors, Gas Grills, Patio & Deck Builders
BioTechs South Houston David Morales 6500 DeMoss Drive #741913 Houston, TX 77274 713-999-4102 Cleaning Specialists - BioHazardous Material, Cleaning Specialists - Trauma CASK Industries Bobby Thomson 3424 Peachtree Road Northeast #300 Atlanta, GA 30326 904-451-0461 Building Materials, Kitchen Cabinets
ALL SUPPLIER MEMBERS are listed online at haabuyersguide.com, searchable by product/service category or company name. 62
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Interior Landscaping of Houston Brad Vitale 9337 B Katy Fwy #265 Houston, TX 77024 718-880-2066 Interior & Decorator Service, PlantsInterior Leasing/Maint, Holiday Lights & Decorations Referred by Tammie Garcia, CAM, CAPS LDC Paving Inc. Chad Davis 20220 Hempstead Road #26 Houston, TX 77065 832-640-7296 Parking Area Maintenance & Marking, Asphalt & Asphalt Products, Concrete Contractors Link Staffing Services Jenna Quirino 242 1st St. West Humble, TX 77338 281-448-5465 Employment Agencies, Personnel Agency Lithotech Printed Products/Forms Center Ken Williams 5601 Bintliff #550 Houston, TX 77036 713-782-3999 Printers, Graphic Designers, Promotional Products, Signs Referred by Kirk H. Tate, CPM On Site Towing LLC Jason Flatt P.O. Box 15348 Humble, TX 77347 713-401-0800 Wrecker Service, Towing Service, Parking Area Maintenance & Marking
SEAL Security Solutions LLC James Alexander 1525 Blalock Houston, TX 77080 713 -979-2388 Security Consulting Service, Security Guard/Patrol Service Special Touch Landscaping Ahmad Fobbs 5090 Richmond Ave #496 Houston, TX 77056 713-960-9366 Landscape Contractors, Lawn Maintenance, Sprinklers - Garden & Lawn, Tree Services Vivint Ashleigh Pepper 4931 N 300 West Provo, UT 84604 801-898-2318 Locks & Locksmiths, Security Control Equipment/Systems Willbanks & Associates Inc. Ryan Sentell 6610 Stillwell St. Houston, TX 77087-1418 713-640-2710 Water Heaters & Boilers, Boilers Distribution & Mfg Zumper Inc. Natalie Cariola 49 Geary St. #350 San Francisco, CA 94108 310-925-0961 Advertising-Internet, Locators Referred by Marlo Simmons
Paul Ryan Windows Josh Benoit 22341-A E Hammond Drive Porter, TX 77365 844-372-2155 A/C Contractors, Garage Doors Service & Parts, WindowReplacement & Repair Referred by Julie Batche Re-Mark Technologies Group LLC Frank Lopez 7070 W 43rd St. #101 Houston, TX 77092 713-338-2558 Computer Networking, Computers Service & Repairs, Telephone Equipment & Repairs
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The Go-Getters HAA’s MEMBERSHIP RECRUITERS
MAKING MEMBERSHIP MATTER Recruit all year round and become part of the Go-Getter Club.
Meetings are now quarterly! Be the top recruiter for each quarter and win one of the following items: 4 1st Quarter: Yeti 40 Hopper cooler 4 2nd Quarter: Apple Watch 4 3rd Quarter: Samsung 40” Smart TV 4 4th Quarter: $500 Holiday Cash Plus, for each new member you recruit, you’ll earn a chance to win gift cards ranging from $25 to $250! JOIN A TEAM and build relationships with like-minded members. Get involved with Go-Getters and make lasting industry connections. Visit www.haaonline.org/gogetterscorner to get all the information you need.
Mark your calendars! All meetings will be hosted at Cafe Adobe in the Marq-E Center 7620 Katy Fwy, Houston, TX 77024 HONORARY LIFE MEMBERS Members who have recruited more than 100 companies Claude Arnold Monette Reynolds Kenn Brown Sherry Stevenson Tina Cavaco Kirk Tate Kevin Fenn Suan Tinsley Diane Gilbert Sonny Unverzagt Anita Harrison Del Walmsley Dwayne Henson Nancé Wells Mike Koch H.P. Paul Young Merry Mount Jeanne Marie Zublin Dicks
September 20 December 7 3:30 p.m. – Go-Getter Happy Hour Register online today!
THE GO-GETTERS ARE THE BACKBONE of the Houston Apartment Association. By recruiting new members, the Go-Getter Club helps both new management and supplier companies and the association grow for the future. To join the club and get going on recruitment, see online at www.haaonline.org or contact Amanda and Lauren in the Membership Department at firstname.lastname@example.org. 64
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Go-Getters Happy Hour Thursday, April 20 at Cafe Adobe in the Marq-E Center 1. 1st Quarter Top Team for recruiting, Team #1 2. 1st Quarter Top Recruiter Aaron Potier, Houston Multi-Family Marketing, with four recruits and winner of the Apple Watch 3. Event co-sponsors Apartments.com and Reliant Energy 4. HAA presented a check for more than $25,000 to the Red Cross, proceeds from the All-Stars Sports Challenge.
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The Go-Getters HAAâ€™s MEMBERSHIP RECRUITERS
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ambassadors pg 68,69.qxp_Layout 1 8/15/17 3:12 PM Page 1
The Ambassador ONE Society HAA’s WELCOMING COMMITTEE
Join the Ambassador teams and visit communities to promote association involvement.
Mark your calendars and join us in 2017! Meetings are held on the first Wednesday of the following months: September 6 October 4 November 1 1. The Ambassador “ONE of the Month” is Vince Mallace, Roto-Rooter Services Co with 79 points. 2. The Ambassador ONE Society was recognized as a TAA Community Service Star for its community service initiative in support of the Houston First Responders 911 Bears Project.
Ambassador ONE Society members with at least 10 points, ranked by points earned: Shera Lehman Vince Mallace Raedean Mitchem Chelsea Quinteros Angie Lavrack Mat Tilley April Shane Wilton Paul Marks Logan Richter Shala Johnson Liz Levins Marivel Bownds Arely Pena Doug Oehl Alex Antonov Kristin McLaughlin Shannon Bass Keith Sobolik Angel Lopez Kurt Allshouse Marcus Wheatfall Will McGinnis David Lindley Paul Gilmore Matt Mistica Ryan Weis Blake Subinsky Phillip Price Zamara Nitcholas Diamela Bravo Hector Mendez Pete Lopez Jason Norbeck Joey Rodriguez Whitney Yeakey Jerry Lee Lewis Chad Emrie Danyell Wilkerson
Texscape Roto-Rooter Apartment Data Services Gail Construction The Liberty Group WeDoTrash PrestoX eConserve JMI Contractors Redi Carpet Valet Living The Liberty Group Power Express Lone Star Pro Services Mohawk Industries Lee & Barrier Builders Ted W Allen & Associates Metropolitan Staffing Solutions The Allshouse Group Triple Seal Insulation Incite Energy LLC FSI Construction Vinson Guard Service Bio-One Impact Floors HD Supply HD Supply Greenlogic Lighting & Electric Green City Security PPG Paints HD Supply Impact Floors The Urban Foresters PPG Paints Ameritex Movers BH North America ApartmentData.com
330 206 168 155 101 93 90 85 53 49 47 46 42 33 32 32 29 28 19 19 19 19 16 16 15 15 13 13 13 12 12 12 11 11 11 10 10 10
Ambassadors earn points by sharing leads, making introductions and visiting communities to promote HAA events and news.
THE AMBASSADOR ONE SOCIETY is an organized network exchange that helps supplier partners build their business contacts within HAA. It’s the perfect way for new suppliers to get started with the association. Group members share leads, make introductions and support HAA and its members. For details, attend an orientation and one of the meetings listed here, or contact Amanda in the Membership Department at 713-595-0316, or email email@example.com. 68
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3. First Place Team “The Cool Kids Corner” with 115 points 4. Second Place Team “Cash ME Onsite” with 51 points 5. Third Place “Team HC²” with 40 points
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Portfolio Changes The following owner/management companies have added the listed properties to their portfolios: • 8800 Broadway LLC: One Pine Apartments, 288 units at 4300 Sherwood Lane. • Adara Communities: Fairfield Ranch, 294 units at 20525 Cypresswood Drive in Cypress. • All is Good/Holleyvale Homes: Hollyvale Homes Apartments, 38 units at 423 Hollyvale. • Allied Orion Group: Winding Trails Apartments, 438 units at 10300 Wilcrest Drive. • AMG Raintree LLC: Raintree Apartments, 228 units at 1009 S. Richey in Pasadena. • Asset Plus Corp.: Red Pines Apartments, 244 units at 3823 Red Bluff Road in Pasadena. • Centennial-Lonestar Properties LLC: Rosslyn Heights Apartments, 60 units at 7015 Woodsman Trail. • Cornerstone Income Properties: Arbor Point Apartments, 65 units at 18142 S. Park View Drive. • Cypress Point Management: The Brixton, 301 units at 1601 Garth Road in Baytown. • Emart Inc.: La Bella Vista Apartments, 153 units at 3600 S. Shaver South. • Fairway Square Apartments Village: Fairway Square Apartments, 120 units at 2301 Fairway Drive in Alvin. • Finlay Management: Regatta Bay Apartments, 240 units at 2555 N. Repsdorph Road in Seabrook. • Fogelman Management: Villa Toscana Apartments, 504 units at 9125 Highway 6 North. • Grenada Management: Grenada Management, 33 units at various locations. • HM Equity Management LLC: The Cambridge Apartments, 128 units
at 301 Cannan Drive in Angleton and Towne Lake Apartmetns, 204 units at 5730 Timber Creek Place Drive. • Indus Management Group LLC: Tierra Bella Apartments, 234 units at 6833 Beechnut St. • Internacional Realty Inc.: Augusta Meadows Apartments, 264 units at 24215 Kuykendahl Road in Tomball. • Kirkwood Haven: Tronewood Apartments, 24 units at 9222 Lockwood. • The Lynd Company: Waters at Westchase Apartments, 260 units at 11490 Harwin. • Milestone Management: The Legend at Park Ten Apartments, 236 units at 15000 Park Row. • Mosiac Residential Inc.: Eagle Crest Apartments, 200 units at 5303 Atascocita Road in Humble and Timberlakes at Atascocita Apartments, 312 units at 18551 Timber Forest Drive in Humble. • Myan Management Group: Smart Living at Stuebner, 112 units at 7020 Stuebner Airline Road. • Nielsen Real Estate LLC: Delta Garden Apartments, 43 units at 3003 S. Broadway in La Porte. • Oak Leaf Management Company: Brazos Lofts, 25 units at 2727 Brazos St.; 2100 Woodhead Apartments, 14 units at 2100 Woodhead; Murworth Apartments, 22 units at 3611 Murworth; 1218 Jackson Apartments, 26 units at 1218 Jackson Blvd. • Pecan Villa Apartments LLC: Bell House Apartments,5327 Bell. • Pinnacle Property Management Services: Bridges of Cypress Creek Apartments, 314 units at 17710 Red Oak Drive. • Portico Property Management: Barringer Square Apartments, 284 units at 623 B Barringer Lane in Webster. • Prime Realty Property Management: French Quarter Residence, 40 units at 2550 S Highway 35 in Alvin.
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• Radco Residential: City Gate at Champions Apartments, 278 units at 12811 Greenwood Forest Drive. • Rockstar Capital Management LLC: Meadowbrook Apartments, 260 units at 515 S Bender Ave. in Humble and Parkside Place Apartments, 160 8455 Will Clayton Parkway in Humble. • Royal Wildewood Manor Apartments: Royal Wildewood Manor Apartments, 120 units at 2301 Fairway Drive in Alvin. • Saddlebrook Ventures LLC: Candlelight Manor Apartments, 88 units at 712 Pinemont and Candlelight Estates Apartments, 68 units at 818 Pinemont. • Veritas Equity Management: Crossings at Cherry Apartments, 124 units at 1100 S. Cherry St., in Tomball. • Westdale Asset Management Ltd.: Encore on the Bay Apartments, 296 units at 4601 Nasa Parkway in Seabrook.
In the News The Houston Apartment Association and Rental Credit Reporting welcomes Mariana Lima as our new RCR account manager. Lima
The education team for ApartmentRatings and SatisFacts announces the addition of Jennifer Carter as its new director for client performance. Keystone Resources is excited to announce it is now under the new ownership of Tina Nguyen, CPA, of Sugar Land and has recently moved to the Galleria-area. Century A/C Supply and Ruud recently presented Camp Hope, The PTSD Foundation of America, with a $10,000 donation from proceeds generated by Century’s 17th Annual Golf Tournament held earlier this year.
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Are you ready to take your HAA involvement to the next level? “Such a great experience to see firsthand, and understand how our local association works with our local and state government.” – Tammie Garcia, CAM, CAPS, Greystar
Leadership Lyceum HAA created this leadership development program to identify high-caliber, effective, well-informed industry professionals and educate them on the mission and strategic objectives of the association and its affiliated associations. Who is eligible? Individuals working for HAA members are eligible to apply. If you have three or more years of multifamily property management experience and have served on an HAA committee you may apply. If you are a supplier partner, you will need at least two years experience working for a supplier company and have served on an HAA committee. What does the program include? The program includes four - five sessions with specific topics, with a half a day commitment and attendance at other committee meetings which typically last on average of an hour. We schedule the sessions to occur the first half of the year. You have two years to complete the program so if you miss a session this year, you can catch it when it is offered the following year.
“I learned so many things about both HAA and TAA that will allow me to serve both organizations better.” – Brian Febbo, CAS, FSI Constuction
How many people will be selected? Up to 15 individuals will be selected for each class. How do I apply? If you would like to apply for the 2018 class, please contact Susan at firstname.lastname@example.org Your application must be accompanied by TWO letters of recommendation. One letter of recommendation should be from a supervisor and the 2nd letter from a colleague active in the industry. The Leadership Development Committee, comprised of HAA Executive Committee leaders, past lyceum graduates and Past Presidents of HAA will review applications and select participants. Applicants will be notified after the committee meets, typically in early December. Once I complete the program how will I be recognized as a graduate? All candidates that have completed the full program by the end of May will be recognized at the Awards event in June. Candidates who complete the program by the end of October will receive recognition and their HAA Lyceum pin at the Annual Business Meeting in November. All graduates will also receive recognition in HAA’s monthly magazine ABODE and the HAA website. Questions? Contact Susan Hinkley at email@example.com.
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Baby, it may not be cold outside but it’s still a magical time of the year. Come walk in our Chili Wonderland for the 27th Annual HAF Chili Fest! There will be lots teams serving up chili to warm your belly and lots of games and fun for everyone. And it’s all included in the price of your wristband!
Thanks to our “chill” Sponsors! “Habanero” Top Sponsors Earthworks Inc. HD Supply Maintenance Supply Headquarters Texas Eviction LLC “Poblano” Sponsors AAA Plumbers Bruns Construction Enterprises Inc. Crestmark Construction Services DayRise Residential Foundation Specialists HD Supply Hire Priority Staffing & Executive Search Impact Floors “Jalapeno” Sponsors Alfred’s Construction & Renovation Brook Furniture Rental Inc. Bruns Construction Enterprises, Inc CoreLogic Rental Property Solutions CORT Furniture Rental DNM Contracting Inc. Guardian Construction Orkin Pest Control Inc. Pavecon Ltd. PPG Paints Sunny Rock International LLC Trend Brand Solutions Valet Living
Over 21 Wristband Sponsor ApartmentData.com “Chili-tizer” Station Sponsors ApartmentData.com Best Plumbing Trophy Sponsor Poolsure Children Activity Sponsors Craven Carpet Inc. Earthworks Inc.
27th Annual HAF Chili Fest Saturday, October 28, 2017 Noon to 5 p.m. Houston Farm & Ranch 1 Abercrombie St, Houston, TX 77084 Wristbands: Adult – $7 prepaid; $10 on site Child (5-12) – $3 prepaid; $5 on site Kids 4 and under – Free
Interested in entering the Chili Cook-off Contest? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for cost and details on how you can get cooking!
Come chill out wit
h HAF! September 2017
ad index sept pg 74.qxp_Ad Index pg 74 8/15/17 3:15 PM Page 1
Index of Advertisers By CATEGORY
Glass – Plate, Window, Etc.
Security Control Equipment/Systems
Air Rescue . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .25 832-876-4471 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.airrescuetx.net
Ameristar Screen and Glass . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .51 713-683-6767 . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.ameristarglass.com
SentriForce . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 888-671-2202 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.sentriforce.com
Harco Insurance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .51 713-681-2500 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.harco-ins.com
Waste Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .25 713-354-5230 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.thinkgreen.com
Gemstar Construction Development . . . . . . . .47 281-821-1195 . . . . . .www.gemstarconstruction.com
A/C Supplies Century A/C Supply . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 281-530-2859 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.centuryac.com
Texscape Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .53 281-846-3779 . . . . . . . . . .www.texscapeservices.com
On Hold USA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .25 800-755-4142 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.onholdusa.com
Outdoor Elements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14 713-955-0990 . . . . . .www.outdoorelementstx.com
HAA Products & Services Rental Credit Reporting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .40 713-595-0300 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.haaonline.org/rcr
Laundry Equipment & Supplies Carpet Installation Dixie Carpet Installations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7 281-261-6334 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.dixiecarpet.com
WASH Multifamily Laundry Systems . . . . . . . .55 281-967-9507 . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.washlaundry.com
Locks & Locksmiths Electric Contractors Affordable Quality Electric . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13 713-695-5992 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.acuityelectric.com Brandt Electrical Services Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .43 281-693-3383 . . . . . . . . . . .www.brandtelectrical.com
CKI Wholesale Lock Supply . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .51 713-462-0704 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.ckilock.com
HAA reserves the right to reject any advertising if its content is inappropriate or inconsistent with HAA’s standards for publication or HAA’s business interests, in HAA’s sole opinion.
Maintenance Supplies Johnstone Supply . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .61 713-803-6231 . . . . . . . . . .www.johnstonesupply.com
Fire Alarm Systems American Fire Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .67 713-466-9898 . . . . . . . . . . .www.americanfiresys.com
Movers Ameritex Movers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .39 713-484-MOVE . . . . . . . . . .www.stressfreemove.com
Foundation Contractors Foundation Specialists . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5 832-767-1115 . . . . . . . . .www.foundationexperts.com
Paving Contractors Pavement Services . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .26 281-758-8434 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.nopothole.com
General Contractors Camp Construction Services . . . . . . . .Back Cover 713-413-2267 . . . . . . . .www.campconstruction.com
Personnel Agency BG Staffing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .71 713-781-8367 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.bgstaffing.com
Cotton Commercial USA Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 877-511-2962 . . . . . . . . . . .www.cottoncompanies.com Crestmark Construction Services . . . . . . . . . . . .57 713-426-6161 . . . . . . . . . . .www.crestmarkservices.com Disaster America . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .63 888-4-CATUSA . . . . . . . . . . . .www.disasteramerica.com FSI Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .41 832-767-1115 . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.fsiconstruction.com Gambit Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15 832-987-4242 . . . . .www.gambitconstruction.com Gemstar Construction Development . . . . . . . . .31 281-821-1195 . . . . . .www.gemstarconstruction.com RENCON . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Inside Back Cover 713-666-3636 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.rencon.com TPI Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 713-668-7986 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.tpiinc.com
Plumbing Contractors AAA Plumbers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .18 713-462-4753 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.aaaplumbers.com
Resident Screening Service CoreLogic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Inside Front Cover 888-297-8821 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.corelogic.com
Resurfacing Perfect Surface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .27 713-952-0202 . . . . . . . .www.perfectsurfaceinc.com
Ameristar Screen and Glass . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .71 713-683-6767 . . . . . . . . . . . . .www.ameristarglass.com
Want to see current and previous issues of ABODE online? Go to http://issuu.com/haa_abode. Or view this issue on your computer, iPad or smartphone at http://issuu.com/haa_abode/docs/abode_sept2017.
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MarketLine By BRUCE MCCLENNY, President, ApartmentData.com • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
HOUSTON Snapshot 88.9% $983/mo. 111.5¢/sq.ft./mo. 882 sq.ft.
Past 12 Months: -0.2% rental rate growth 11,302 units absorbed
Recently Opened (12 months): 86 communities 23,039 units
Under Construction: 30 communities 7,547 units
Operating Supply: 2,722 communities 637,595 units
Rental Rate (¢/sq.ft./mo.)
Occupancy: Price: Rental Rate: Size:
• • • • • • • •
– 87.0 Jul 17
Proposed Construction: 59 communities 17,436 units
History of Effective Rental Rate & Occupancy for All Units
Hottest Submarkets Over the Past Three Months
Annualized % of Market Rank Submarket Absorbed 1 Downtown 13.9% 2 Montrose/Museum/Midtown 11.3% 3 Highland Village/Upper Kirby/West U 7.2% 4 Woodlands/Conroe South 7.9% 5 Tomball/Spring 5.0%
Rental Rate Growth % 5.7% 4.7% 3.3% 3.0% 4.6%
Total Units Class w/Concessions All 257,482 A 79,867 B 88,605 C 78,154 D 10,856
% of Total Units 40% 56% 36% 39% 24%
Average Special -3.8% -7.4% -1.9% -2.2% -1.2%
Citywide Effect -8.6% -12.3% -5.4% -5.4% -5.2%
One Month Free = -8.33%
THE FIRST TABLE ABOVE GIVES A SNAPSHOT of the current market conditions. The graph displays the overall occupancy and effective rental rates over the past 24 months. These statistics are derived from a continuous survey of all apartment communities in the Houston region. The effective rental rates are the calculated net of concessions and utility adjustments. The second table lists the five hottest submarkets in the Greater Houston area. There are a total of 41 submarkets, and the ranking is based on the best combination of rental rate growth and absorption over the past three months. The third table distributes and analyzes concessions (specials) by classification. Concessions generally are represented by three types of specials: move-in, months free or floor plans. The effect of these specials is captured and prorated over a lease term to arrive at a percentage reduction in market or street rents.
Occupancy: Price: Rental Rate: Size:
Occupancy: Price: Rental Rate: Size:
Occupancy: Price: Rental Rate: Size:
92.1% $1,073/mo. 123.2¢/sq.ft./mo. 871 sq.ft.
90.4% $913/mo. 107.7¢/sq.ft./mo. 848 sq.ft.
91.4% $1,200/mo. 137.6¢/sq.ft./mo. 872 sq.ft.
Past 12 Months: 3.9% rental rate growth 13,723 units absorbed
Past 12 Months: 1.3% rental rate growth 4,366 units absorbed
Past 12 Months: 0.5% rental rate growth 7,968 units absorbed
Operating Supply: 2,936 communities 681,810 units
Operating Supply: 855 communities 179,990 units
Operating Supply: 912 communities 211,013 units
ApartmentData.com has been providing apartment data and marketing products since 1986. ApartmentData.com covers Texas’ four largest metro areas and provides real-time access for property specific information, market surveys and historic submarket data for more than 1.3 million apartment units. For more information, contact Bruce McClenny at 800-595-8730. © 2017 ApartmentData.com September 2017
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with News from around the COMMUNITY
HAA Gives New Hope The Houston Apartment Association donated five truckloads of items to New Hope Housing’s apartment communities, courtesy of HAA’s Ambassador ONE Society and HAA members, Brook Furniture Rental, Green City Recycler, Tarantino Properties, Murphy’s Corporate Housing, Texas Eviction and Veritas Equity Management. HAA-members contributed approximately 1,000 hardback books, dishware, flatware, pots, pans, can openers, paper towels, toilet paper, soap, bathmats, wall art, decorative items and more. New Hope Housing communities provide lifestabilizing, affordable, permanent housing with support services for people who live on very limited incomes. Thank you to Scott Wallace of Houston Waste Solutions for delivering the donations.
ONLINE STATISTICS for the Houston Apartment Association Website and Social Media www.haaonline.org Total visits . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14,563 Visitors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10,062 Most visited pages: 1. Jobline Board 2. Rental Credit Reporting 3. Renter Online Complaint Form
HAA Jobline Apply button cicks . . . . . . . . .4,202 Job postings for the month . .166 Resume postings . . . . . . . . . . . . .219 Job seeker signups . . . . . . . . . . . .94
Twitter @HAAOnline www.twitter.com Followers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5,392
Houston Apartment Association Group members . . . . . . . . . . .2,005
Linkedin http://tinyurl.com/2667ppr Houston Apartment Association Group followers . . . . . . . . . . . .1,690
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Houston Apartment Association 4810 Westway Park Blvd. Houston, Texas 77041
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Bought to you by Camp Construction Services. Our maintenance teams are an integral part of the success of our apartment communities. In this...
Published on Aug 18, 2017
Bought to you by Camp Construction Services. Our maintenance teams are an integral part of the success of our apartment communities. In this...