Value add, rehab, unit updates, whatever you are calling it wherever you are doing it, Renovation is the buzz word of the 2016-2017 cycle. No other sector of our business gets more attention across all property types than renovation.
Renovations sound easy. Jeff Eynon recalls his first boss in the industry throwing him into a rehab in Ft Worth, TX and telling him “they are just boxes, go buy some stuff and get in there and do it the same 226 times!” It wasn’t that easy then and it isn’t that easy today. I was not some sort of rehab ninja. I did not know about scheduling, and unforeseen conditions. I was surprised when the city showed up and asked where my permit was. I was a manager with a turn crew, and it just was not enough.
I often see failed or broken renovation plans. Like my first experience, I often hear “it seemed so easy” and that “we were just going to do it in house” but it wasn’t until they started they learned about the plumbing and permitting issues or any other various unforeseen issues like how work orders and resident retention fell to the way side. Renovations are tricky things and beyond the project management and actual timely execution, setting a scope for your asset and spending money in the right places are as important as any other part of the process and will ensure maximum ROI.
The National Apartment Association, in conjunction with various national research firms, has issued a study of the most desired renovation amenities, and they match up very well with what we see in the renovation trenches. For common areas: fitness center, clubhouse and business center top the list with the usual pool and pet friendly touches trailing behind. For unit interiors: washer/dryer connections, upgraded appliances and hardwood flooring rank highest with countertops and lighting upgrades close behind.
Understanding current industry trends, like the ones mentioned are all part of creating the strongest renovation plan that will result in the greatest ROI. Combining that with CRG’s 25 years of experience planning and executing renovations will help eliminate wasted time and money. Before you jump into your next “box” and start swinging a hammer, call CRG to see how we can use our “ninja” renovation skills to make your next project a success.