More than 170 guests attended MWM's 2017 Multi-Family Summit on Oct. 12 for breakfast, premium networking and a panel discussion moderated by Hunt Midwest's Brenner Holland.
Here's a snapshot of panelist insights:
“We are in a vibrant stage in my 25-year career. One of the leading indicators is the number of calls I get from lenders about sites from developers outside Kansas City, so that tells us that folks are either pooping out in some other markets and trying to come here, or they’re moving from different food groups into multi-family." -Jim Thomas, Cityscape Residential
“I think what has happened in Denver is similar to what has happened to California, where the prices have gotten astronomical and it’s unaffordable for virtually anybody at any income level... Quite honestly, I see Kansas City as the next Denver as people keep looking for more affordable places to live and work. We are certainly very well priced in the market for exceptional value.” -Aaron Rumple, Yaeger Architecture
“Boomers want larger units and more bonus space or an extra den area. Storage is very important to them. Millennials, on the other hand, are more concerned about walkability. They value space a little less and they place more value on amenities and the social aspect of amenities spaces in technology.” -Justin Duff, VanTrust Real Estate
“The amenity stuff keeps getting better and better, particularly with pools and clubhouses. On the technology side, we’re adding USB outlets inside the units and trying to accommodate what’s going to be standard technology as it grows. We’ve built penthouse units for a couple of projects. Those are the first to go, and usually the Boomers get them." -Aaron Neighbors, Neighbors Construction
“The new stuff is always going to fill up, and the reason is that those offer the best property and best amenities. It’s where people want to live. So we are building in places where the jobs are going, and then it’s not a question of ‘Will the new stuff fill up?’ It’s a matter of, ‘At what number will it fill up? Will you meet the pro forma, and will you hit your rents?' " -Aaron Mesmer, Block Real Estate Services
“Paramount to any development is having the best site selection-- access to highways, jobs and amenities-- because when people move into an apartment anymore, there are so many good options out there, you really have to have that ‘wow’ factor. So you need to be able to have people move into something where there’s a sense of place and they have to feel that they have 'arrived' somewhere.” -Mike McKeen, EPC Properties
“I think Kansas City-- the municipality-- really wants to expand opportunities for economic diversity. A lot of projects that we are seeing in the Historic Northeast area are all mixed-income products, so you are divvying up affordable versus market rate and really bringing more diversity into the neighborhood.” -Rachel Treanor, 4Sight Construction Group
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