Student Housing Business

JUL-AUG 2018

Student Housing Business is the voice of the student housing industry.

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Page 60 of 104

MANAGEMENT July/August 2018 60 Harden: You are starting a busi- ness within a business. Make no mistake that it takes a mas- sive amount of time and effort to make the change worthwhile. It will cost more, take more time, and cause more headaches than you initially planned. We are still learning every day, but we have seen great benefits since making the decision to manage in-house. SHB: How has doing your own managing paid off? What's the ROI on that decision? Harden: Effective rents and eco- nomic occupancy are up at every property where we have brought management in-house. Adminis- trative and marketing costs are lower because we have the ability to make executive decisions on whether or not services are 'needs' or 'nice to haves.' Features on management and accounting soft- ware, as well as marketing servic- es are several examples of where this plays a role. On-site staff has more access to ownership, and we believe this will result in higher retention long term. SHB: Do you do a lot of work for merchant developers? Bonnin: Considering most devel- opers do not have a vertically integrated management firm, ACH does a substantial amount of new development startups for merchant builders. ACH has a dedicated team whose sole focus is to handle the initial lease up. We established this team eight years ago who only handle new developments. We found it chal- lenging for operational supervi- sors to handle the demands of a new start up while handling a portfolio of ongoing operational assets. SHB: If a common consensus is that there's more of a pay-off to be had in the acquisitions seat versus the management seat, how do you stay strong in this business? Bonnin: ACH by all standards is a pure third party operator, and as such, our reputation, performance and results matter. In order to be successful in the manage- ment arena, we have to have a client-focused mind and be able to produce operational results. Our organization is structured to assure there are many touch points with a client, even if the client would prefer not hearing from us at all. Having these vari- ous touch points throughout the organization allows us to devel- op strong partnerships with our clients, which assures ownership objectives are being heard and met. This in turn leads to repeat business with our existing clients and brings in new accounts based upon our performance. SHB At M&T Realty Capital Corporation, we understand that speed and certainty of closing complicated transactions is important for our clients. We have more than 160 years of experience building relationships, providing seamless execution, and tailoring financing solutions to meet your unique needs. With $3.2 billion in commercial and multifamily loans closed in 2017 alone, M&T Realty Capital Corporation offers the know-how and experience you need to close deals with confidence. Find out how we can deliver for you. Equal Housing Lender. ©2018 M&T Realty Capital Corporation. M&T Realty Capital Corporation is a wholly owned subsidiary of M&T Bank, Member FDIC. Understanding what's important. Delivering the deal. John Higinbothom, Jr. 410-545-2408

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