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PRESIDENT’S CORNER The start to 2017 has certainly been busy and productive here at NVAA. The organization has been hard at work laying out the schedule for events and activities throughout the year, as well as setting the stage for future growth and successes. We know everyone’s schedule fills up fast these days, so we appreciate all the help and support we have received from the membership so far this year. On February 21st we held our 6th Annual Founders Awards. This wonderful annual tradition recognizes outstanding achievements in the multi-family industry, and we’re always proud to show off the skill and dedication of our members. From our Management Company of the Year, to Maintenance Technician of the Year, to our Rising Stars, everyone had a great time honoring the nominees and award recipients. Behind the scenes, the Board of Directors has been refining the organization’s strategic plan to ensure our continued success. Together with our Executive Director Ludwig Gaines, we held our annual Board Retreat here in our Arlington office to spend a day discussing goals and objectives, and laying the groundwork for events and services that will occur throughout the year. This year’s retreat proved to be both lively and productive, and the entire Board is excited about the coming year. One new initiative is our upcoming Owner / Developer Series. The first event planned in this series will be an intimate seminar and conversation about the local market conditions, investment trends, recent multi-family sales activity, and approaches to multi-family property valuation. The ongoing series will offer the opportunity to engage with local industry and government leaders in an informal and personal atmosphere. We expect this to become a very popular event and one that provides significant value and opportunity to our owner and developer members. Finally, we have our Annual Apartment Summit just around the corner. You should be receiving plenty of information regarding this great one-day event, so please keep an eye on your inboxes. This year’s schedule of speakers and seminars is packed with leading experts and current ‘hottopic’ issues, and will be an opportunity to educate and innovate with other members of the multi-family industry. Reserve your space early to ensure you don’t miss this opportunity! Sincerely, Kevin Eakin President, NVAA Board of Directors
NVAA would like to thank the outgoing members of the NVAA Board of Directors. We appreciate your dedication and contributions to ensure the continued growth and success of the Association. John Welsh—AHC, Inc. Kristin Clegg—Dittmar Company Carrie Ehart—Raine and Son LLC
Jan Haub—Paradigm Management Jen Paige—Gates, Hudson & Associates
We would like to welcome the 2017 Board of Directors. We look forward to what is to come in the upcoming year!
Officers / Executive Committee: Kevin R. Eakin—Snell Properties ● President Gerald E. Pierce—E.G. Reinsch Companies ● Vice President Barbara Fleming—Commonwealth Terrace ● Treasurer Patrick O’Meara—Paradigm Management ● Secretary Directors: Wendy Dickinson—ServPro ● Larry Edmonds—Owl Pest Prevention ● Justin Miller—Caruthers Properties LLC ● Rob Whitaker—AHC Management LLC ● Cheryl Monno—Seaport Properties ● Joe Murphy—HMS Insurance Associates
Executive Director: Ludwig P. Gaines, Esq.
Legislative Council: John “Chip” Dicks
Launch Lunch Recap NVAA Members Find Ways to Get Involved
NVAA hosted a Launch Lunch on January 12, 2017 for members to learn about ways to get involved in Association initiatives. The event was a great success and we look forward to generating some new ideas to maximize NVAA’s value for its members. Larry Edmonds of Owl Pest Prevention served as the MC and Christian Siding sponsored the event. Chairs from NVAA’s committees took time to introduce their committee goals and NVAA Executive Director, Ludwig Gaines, delivered remarks on the future direction and outlook of the Association.
By the numbers... A total of 20 new volunteers signed up for one or more committees!
NVAA Committees: Education Founder’s Awards Legislative Membership Newsletter / Marketing Scholarship Special Events / Outreach If you weren’t able to make the lunch and would like to learn more about how to get involved with NVAA committees, please call the NVAA office for further information.
Launch Lunch Gallery NVAA Members Find Ways to Get Involved
Reserve Your Spot at the 4th Annual NVAA Summit! NVAA is gearing up for the 4th Annual Northern Virginia Apartment Summit: Multifamily Opportunities in a Time of Disruption. The event will take place on Tuesday, April 4th at Founders Hall on the George Mason University Arlington campus. The keynote address will be delivered by Jamie Gorski, Chief Marketing Officer at The Bozzuto Group. Sandy Paul, Managing Director of National Market Research at Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, will deliver the feature presentation, “Scale of Disruption—The Sharing Economy’s Effect on Real Estate.”
The schedule for the day will be as follows: 9:00 AM—10:00 AM: Registration, Refreshments, & Mini Tradeshow 10:00 AM—10:15 AM: Welcome Remarks 10:15 AM—11:00 AM: Keynote Address 11:00 AM—11:15 AM: Break 11:15 AM—12:00 PM: Feature Presentation Registration is now OPEN! Click here or visit NVAAonline.com to reserve your spot. Tabletop sponsorships are also available.
Spotlight: Tim Cutrona Regional Property Manager Scott Management, Inc. We have all gone out in the evenings to see musicians perform at local venues. What many don’t realize is those talented individuals have already put in a full day’s work before coming to perform. Tim Cutrona has been a musician for over 20 years. However, like many others in the music industry, Tim needed to work during the day to make ends meet. He had picked up some jobs as a handyman but the work was irregular. Tim came across an advertisement for a maintenance engineer position offering a salary as well as an apartment and applied. Even though Tim was not offered the position, unbeknownst to him, his information was referred to the manager at The Latrobe Apartments. The manager called him and Tim initially thought they were trying to reach one of his brothers, as both had attended college in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. The manager then clarified they were calling from a property in DC and were interested in interviewing Tim for a maintenance position. This opportunity launched Tim’s career in the property management industry. He has since been involved with over 40 properties in six different roles. Currently, Tim is a Regional Property Manager at Scott Management in Alexandria, Virginia. Tim became involved with NVAA in 1999 while working at Foxchase Apartments. He is a firm believer in the value of association involvement and began attending NVAA’s monthly meetings. Tim’s involvement grew and he eventually served a term as NVAA President and held a position on the Board of Directors. The education NVAA provides has been invaluable to Tim. He appreciates how NVAA offers a platform for members to share ideas and discuss issues affecting communities throughout Northern Virginia. Tim also realized many unexpected benefits of his membership with NVAA. “What I did not expect was the access to industry experts, legislators, officials, service professionals, and peers that I believe is the cornerstone of NVAA’s mission and the core service it provides its membership,” he said. “It is unparalleled in our areas and is a great example of why the economy in Northern Virginia leads the region.” Tim has been inspired by the improvements to NVAA over the last few years. He sees the enhancement of
educational programs, elevated frequency of networking events, and the optimization of communications as key factors in the Association being recognized as a leading resource for professionals to advance their careers and investments. He stresses the importance of NVAA’s continued advocacy for the industry. “As stakeholders in Northern Virginia, the representation of our issues, regulatory concerns, and the master plan of the region must be in our sights. The perception of NVAA is to be regarded as the go-to resource for continued development and management of real estate investments in our geographical area of expertise.” Tim’s advice for getting the most out of NVAA membership is to attend events catered to your professional goals. He encourages members to share ideas with the Executive Director and the Board to help them create programs focused on advancing the resources offered to members. An additional piece of advice from Tim: “Golf with NVAA!” Tim’s passion for the property management industry lies in is his ability to positively impact others. He describes the most enjoyable aspect of his job as “building community through our contributions to the quality of life for our residents.” Tim’s feels the biggest challenge of his position is controlling expenses when often times the cost of operations outpaces revenue growth. Scott Management has been in operation for more than 50 years. However, many don’t realize the company began with the prolific construction projects of the Banks family and their partners, an initiative designed to provide strong value in housing and services to the greater community. Scott Management still proudly manages these assets and this legacy continues to define the company’s overall mission of delivering value to the community and its residents. Even though Tim has built an impressive career in property management, he has never lost his passion for music. He continues to perform at venues throughout the local area.
NVAA’s 5th Annual Founder’s Awards At the ceremony held on February 21st, NVAA members were recognized for demonstrating leadership and exemplifying excellence in the industry. The winners were chosen based on the established criteria, eligibility, and merit for each individual award. The ceremony also included opening remarks from Arlington County Board Member Christian Dorsey, who is a former Planning Commissioner, Landlord Tenant Commissioner and is currently Senior Leader at the Economic Policy Institute. Mr. Dorsey opened by crediting NVAA for its efforts, saying, “I applaud NVAA for its outstanding work in the apartment industry and in the community." We would like to thank the Founder’s Awards Committee Chair, Kara Permisohn with Minkoff Company, and committee members Larry Edmonds with Owl Pest Prevention, Gerald Pierce with E.G. Reinsch, and Kat Zimmerman with Central Wholesalers for making this event a huge success!
Jorge Noe, Paradigm Management Maintenance Supervisor of the Year
Larry Edmonds (left), Owl Pest Prevention Greatest Contribution to NVAA by an Individual Kevin Eakin (right), Snell Construction 2016 Property of the Year – Garden Style, Monticello Falls Church
Mason Gabber, Jr., E.G. Reinsch Maintenance Technician of the Year Adrian Tomalo, E.G. Reinsch Assistant Manager of the Year
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Carrie Ehart, Raine & Son, LLC Associate Member of the Year
Lisa Novakoski, Paradigm Management Leasing Consultant of the Year
NVAA’s 5th Annual Founder’s Awards
Shining Star Winners (pictured from left to right): Shukhrat Asrorov—Paradigm Management, Pedro Benitez-Berrios— Paradigm Management, Shannon Hensley—Paradigm Management, Morgan Babcock—Paradigm Management, Antonio Yarborough—Owl Pest Prevention, Michael Gnaho- Paradigm Management, Robert Hall—E.G. Reinsch Winners not pictured: Darlene Lawson—E.G. Reinsch, Joseph Shay—Snell Properties, Robert Owusu—E.G. Reinsch
Paradigm Management, Management Company of the Year Additional winners not pictured: AHC Management—The Frederick, Hi-rise Property of the Year Durcy Carbajal—Gates Hudson, On-site Manager of the Year
Congratulations to all of our winners and thank you for going above and beyond to make a positive impact on the industry and NVAA! Check out additional photos from the event on page 15
Question of the Quarter We asked some of our members to weigh in on the following question: What is the best professional advice you have ever received and how has it helped you in your property management career? “I think one of the best pieces of professional advice I have received in my 35+ years in property management came from the late Rob Duffett, who was a member of NVAA. He advised me not to deviate from company policy and procedures, as they relate to all tenants and owners under any circumstance. This way there is no room for anyone, tenant or owner, to suggest they are being treated any differently than other customers or clients.” Cheryl C. Monno Principal Broker, Seaport Properties
“Someone once told me that in property management you are an actor and a therapist. An actor because you have to interact with all future and current residents regardless of your personal or professional feelings. You need to greet everyone with a smile, effectively communicate with individuals with diverse personalities, and deliver high-level customer service to everyone who walks through the door. A therapist because you are responsible for handling a range of personal and financial situations (spouses, divorces, children, job transfers, etc.,), all of which effect the lease or occupancy of your apartments.” Roxana Hernandez Property Manager, E.G. Reinsch Companies “The best professional advice I received long time ago was ‘Be patient and be a good listener.’ This advice has helped me tremendously in my property management career. It has been vital in handling residents, communicating with vendors regarding the quality and cost of services, and effectively addressing and resolving issues among co-workers. We are in the customer service business and if you fail to listen to your customers, you will struggle in this wireless universe. It is true you can’t always fulfill everyone’s needs, but if you listen and pay attention, it will go long way. Whether through in-person or digital communication channels, residents appreciate it when you acknowledge their concerns . In this wireless world, our residents love to communicate more than ever, via phone , email, or social media. Listen to your residents—good or bad— and remember both are equally helpful. Thank them for their feedback, regardless of whether they are praising or complaining; this will allow you to resolve issues faster and provide optimal customer service.” Shahnaz Faruque Property Manager, LCOR
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Question of the Quarter (continued) What is the best professional advice you have ever received and how has it helped you in your property management career? “Manage what you own. I buy and hold. I own old garden apartments and I am constantly upgrading the buildings and upgrading the tenancy. This often means that I go beyond what is absolutely necessary to get the unit ready to rent. I do not have this option when managing other owners’ buildings. It is a question of shortterm versus long-term. I know that it is necessary to manage for others but gradually slide to the ownership side and the buildings will work for you.” Ralph Johnson Johnson Associates, Inc. “Use your natural strengths to find work you will intuitively be good at. I like doing a lot of different things. Property management has been great match for me because no day is ever the same.” Holly Harmon Property Manager, Paradigm Management 1. The 5 P’s for Successful Management: Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance. 2. The Golden Rule: Treat others as you wish to be treated! 3. Be sure that when marketing, the product (apartment, condo, home, or commercial space) would be a product you would purchase or lease yourself. Teresa Washington Director of Operations, AHC Management
Come Check Out NVAA’s Open House! Starting March 8th, 2017, NVAA will be hosting a monthly Open House. The Open House is designed for current, new, and prospective members to learn more about NVAA programs, benefits, and events. Ludwig Gaines, NVAA Executive Director, will be available to speak with attendees and answer any questions you may have about NVAA initiatives. The inaugural Open House will be on March 8th at the NVAA office (4600 Fairfax Drive, Suite 604, Arlington, VA 22203) from 10-11 AM. No registration is required and it is free to attend. Come see what NVAA is up to!
Six Keys to Successful Property By: Marc Courtenay Management www.propertymanager.com As a property manager, do you ever feel stuck in the mundane routine of your weekly responsibilities? Are you overwhelmed by the magnitude of the responsibilities that define your important career? If you answered yes to both or either question, don’t feel alone. Every honest property manager I’ve ever spoken with has confessed that at one time or another, they’ve been at the end of their “rope.” Consider the following ideas as often overlooked keys to your success and steps to solve your most gnarly problems. 1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. I’ve never met a successful manager, investor or business owner who was too proud to reach out to trusted advisors for ideas and insights. 2. Be certain of the results and outcomes you really want. As one success coach tells major corporations, “If you don’t know where you’re going you’ll probably end up somewhere else.” Spend some downtime to sharpen your definitions of what a successful property manager looks like. Spell out the details of where you’d like to be when you attain that level of professional excellence. The more specific the better, and commit it to writing as a symbol of determination. 3. Once you’ve focused on the level of success you desire, imagine yourself being there, experiencing it. In your mind’s eye “see” what your business and your life will be like when you’ve arrived at your destination. Then, as the late Dr. Wayne Dyer would say, “Feel the feeling of your wish fulfilled.” This isn’t “wishful thinking” or psychobabble. This is physics combined with the mindset that uses the imagination to create a clear visual image of your professional targets.
4. Be organized like you’ve never been before. If your methods aren’t working try new ones. If your goals and your business are chaotic, your successes will be totally unpredictable. Perhaps you’ve been putting off using the latest management software and technologies. Resolve to find out which of these tools can be most useful to you and then take the plunge. Be organized and stay organized! 5. Plan to not only succeed, but also plan to retire. Financial planners use the mantra, “If you fail to plan then you plan to fail.” That may be too morose but the point is to have a tax-advantaged retirement savings program in place for yourself and your employees. Talk to your CPA or a financial planner about your choices. Whether it’s a simple IRA, a SEP-IRA or a 401-K, get a plan in place and contribute to it regularly. The tax-deferred advantages will offset the reduction in your takehome pay, and the potential compounding over time can help fund a comfortable retirement. 6. Network, network, network until your network of potential clients, colleagues and acquaintances is bursting at the seams. Everyone you meet has at least one good idea, one powerful connection or one remarkable secret to success that they’d like to share with you. Don’t forget to take a vacation every year so you can recharge, refresh and clear your mind for new possibilities in the year ahead. Ready, get set and proceed confidently in the direction of your dreams.
Spotlight: Jennifer Epstein Regional Director, Multifamily Kastle Systems After graduating from The University of South Carolina with a degree in Journalism and a focus in Advertising, Jennifer started off her career selling print advertising. Six years later, she moved to DC and leveraged her previous experience to secure a sales position with The Washington Post’s Apartment Showcase, selling apartment advertising space throughout the DMV. Jennifer quickly found her niche within the multifamily sector. In 2016 she joined Kastle Systems, and has been working in collaboration with counterpart Marc Silverman to expand the company’s physical security business across apartment and condominiums throughout the mid-Atlantic region. Jennifer focuses on conceptualizing security system designs for new construction apartments and retrofitting existing communities to integrate the latest innovations in security technology. NVAA has played an integral role in Jennifer’s success in the industry. She joined the Association seven years ago when she first moved to the DC area. NVAA was one of the first industry organizations she joined due to its strong reputation for offering its members valuable resources within a close-knit environment. Currently, Jennifer is spearheading a project for a garden-style community comprised of 54 buildings in Alexandria. The property had reached out to Kastle for access control to secure the entrance doors of each building. With the amount of individual buildings on the property, Jennifer recommended the integration of KastlePresence, eliminating the need to add an entry phone and phone line to
each structure. This technology supports hands-free entry by means of a Bluetooth-enabled reader at the door. The system doesn’t require fobs as the credential is through a secure phone application. The app is also equipped with a button to allow streamlined visitor entry. Jennifer is excited about this project and the value it delivers to the customer and its residents. “Despite the age of the community, this unique technology has transformed the property to function like a brand new building with a class-A look and feel.” While Jennifer is passionate about her career, she also enjoys her time away from the office. She is an avid tennis player and is working on honing her skills in golf. Growing up in Charleston, South Carolina, Jennifer claims these two pastimes are “in our blood.” Kastle Systems has been in business since 1972 and is considered the pioneer of managed, cloud-based security. “We were offering cloud-based security before ‘cloud’ was even a buzz term,” Jennifer said. This cloud technology allows customers to access their systems from anywhere via any device. “We are the leading managed security company in the U.S. and our corporate office is located right here in Falls Church.” Kastle Systems frequently hosts lunches at their headquarters for current and prospective owners and managers to learn about opportunities to integrate new security technology at their properties. Jennifer can be reached at 703.247.0469 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to contact her if you are interested in attending one of their informational lunches or to discuss how Kastle can help enhance security at your property while optimizing accessibility for your residents.
Say Cheese! Check out photos from the 5th Annual NVAA Founderâ€™s Awards!
Have a photo from an NVAA event you would like published in the newsletter? Send it to email@example.com! More event photos can be viewed at www.nvaaonline.com.
We Want to Hear From You! Do you have a great idea for an article? Have you had a unique experience in your property management career that you think others would be able to learn from? Do you have an industry-related question that our members could help answer?
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SAVE THE DATE! NVAA’s Annual Golf Tournament will be held on June 9th, 2017 at Stonewall Golf Club. Keep an eye out for further details. This is a funfilled event you will NOT want to miss!
Legal Language Do you have a legal question related to the multifamily industry? Have you faced a situation where you weren’t clear on the law surrounding the issue? Let us know and we will have one of our NVAA legal experts delve into the details and clear up any confusion. We have a wealth of legal knowledge within our membership willing help you understand how legislation and housing regulations affect the industry. Submit any questions to Ludwig and we will be sure to have them answered in the next newsletter.
Want to know what is happening in the local jurisdictions. . . Visit the NVAA website under
“Local Real Estate Digest”