INDUSTRY NEWS

 

Julian Castro Sworn in as Secretary for the US Department of Housing and Urban Development

This week Julián Castro was sworn in as the 16th Secretary for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The brief swearing-in ceremony took place at HUD headquarters in Washington, D.C. and was administered by Chief Judge Richard W. Roberts of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia at 12:35pm E.T. HUD Chief of Staff Nealin Parker held the Bible during the ceremony.

Secretary Castro will now lead the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in carrying out its mission of creating opportunity for all Americans through strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes.

Secretary Castro’s official photo and pictures from the swearing-in ceremony and Secretary Castro greeting HUD employees this morning can be found at the following links:

Secretary Castro Official Photo – Flickr

Swearing-In Ceremony Photo – Flickr

Secretary Castro Greets Employees at HUD Headquarters -Flickr

Biography of Secretary Julián Castro

Julián Castro was sworn in as the 16th Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development on July 28, 2014.  In this role, Castro oversees 8,000 employees and a budget of $46 billion, using a performance-driven approach to achieve the Department’s mission of expanding opportunity for all Americans.

"Julián is a proven leader, a champion for safe, affordable housing and strong, sustainable neighborhoods,” said President Barack Obama after Castro’s confirmation.  “I know that together with the dedicated professionals at HUD, Julián will help build on the progress we’ve made battling back from the Great Recession – rebuilding our housing market, reducing homelessness among veterans, and connecting neighborhoods with good schools and good jobs that help our citizens succeed.”

As Secretary, Castro’s focus is ensuring that HUD is a transparent, efficient and effective champion for the people it serves.  Utilizing an evidence-based management style, he has charged the Department with one goal: giving every person, regardless of their station in life, new opportunities to thrive. 

Before HUD, Castro served as Mayor of the City of San Antonio.  During his tenure, he became known as a national leader in urban development.  In 2010, the City launched the “Decade of Downtown”, an initiative to spark investment in San Antonio’s center city and older neighborhoods. This effort has attracted $350 million in private sector investment, which will produce more than 2400 housing units by the end of 2014.  In addition, San Antonio’s East Side is the only neighborhood in America that has received funding to implement major projects under three key Obama Administration revitalization initiatives: Choice Neighborhoods, Promise Neighborhoods and the Byrne Criminal Justice Program.

In March 2010, Castro was named to the World Economic Forum’s list of Young Global Leaders. Later that year, Time magazine placed him on its “40 under 40” list of rising stars in American politics. 

Previously, Castro served as a member of the San Antonio City Council.  He is also an attorney and worked at Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld before starting his own practice.

Secretary Castro received a B.A. from Stanford University in 1996, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School in 2000.  He and his wife, Erica, have a daughter, Carina.*

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Apartment Markets Continue Expansion

Apartment markets continued to expand in the second quarter of 2014, as growth accelerated in all four indexes in the National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC) Quarterly Survey of Apartment Market Conditions. The market tightness (68), sales volume (56), equity financing (58) and debt financing (68) indexes all improved from the first quarter this year and marked the second quarter in a row with all above the breakeven level of 50.

“Despite concerns in some quarters about the pace of new development, most markets appear to be absorbing new supply with no downward pressure on rents or vacancies,” said NMHC Senior Vice President of Research and Chief Economist Mark Obrinsky. “The improvement in market tightness was particularly noteworthy. Four years into the apartment industry recovery and expansion, the increase in demand continues to outstrip the pickup in new supply.”

The survey also asked about urban vs. suburban development. Four in ten (43 percent) reported an increased share of urban development relative to suburban in the last six months, compared to one quarter (27 percent) reporting an increased share of suburban development. Of the suburban development taking place, more than half (54 percent) reported more town center-style developments, with 39 percent reporting no appreciable change and 7 percent reporting more garden-style developments. [These results exclude “Don’t know/not applicable.”]

“Early in the recovery, apartment development was concentrated in downtown areas of large cities. While such areas continue to attract investment, new construction is expanding more broadly into suburbs as well. But developers are bringing urban style to suburban locations, with a heavier emphasis on ‘town center’ communities than we’ve seen in the past,” said Obrinsky.

Key findings include:

The Market Tightness Index rose from 56 to 68. The percentage of respondents who saw looser conditions continued to decline, down from 20 percent to 15 percent. While this improvement is partly seasonal, the index is higher than the average for the July quarter since the survey began 15 years ago.

The Sales Volume Index increased slightly from 52 to 54. About half (51 percent) of respondents felt that sales volumes were unchanged from three months earlier; almost one-third of responses (29 percent) reported a higher sales volume, and 16 percent reported a lower number of sales.

The Equity Financing Index rose five points to 58. The majority of respondents (56 percent) continue to report that the availability of equity financing is unchanged from three months ago—similar to the past three quarterly surveys.

The Debt Financing Index increased to 68 from 63. Almost one-third (30 percent) believed that conditions are better, and only 3 percent felt that conditions were worse, a marked decline from January’s Quarterly Survey, when 30 percent felt conditions were worse.

About the Survey:
The July 2014 Quarterly Survey of Apartment Market Conditions was conducted July 14-July 21, 2014; 110 CEOs and other senior executives of apartment-related firms nationwide responded. For more information, see the full report at NMHC.org**  

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Top 10 PHAs Applying for RAD

The Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program is a key piece of the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s affordable housing preservation strategy.

One component of the program allows public housing authorities to convert properties to long-term Sec. 8 rental assistance contracts. The competitive program is capped at 60,000 units. HUD leaders and supporters are hoping to lift that limit as demand has been roughly triple the level of the cap.

Top 10 public housing authority RAD applicants:

  • Chicago  (10,935 units)
  • El Paso, Tex.  (6,100 units)
  • Nashville, Tenn.  (5,384 units)
  • Birmingham, Ala.  (5,015 units)
  • Baltimore  (4,583 units)
  • San Francisco  (4,575 units)
  • Charlotte, N.C.  (3,424 units)
  • Mobile, Ala.  (3,410 units)
  • Tampa, Fla.  (3,065 units)
  • Greensboro, N.C.  (2,195 units)

Source: Department of Housing and Urban Development, June 2014

A list of the RAD first component reservations can be found at www.hud.gov/rad.***

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Ascension Forms New Nonprofit Senior Living Giant

Ascension, the nation’s largest nonprofit Catholic health system, has announced it will unite the majority of its senior-focused programs under the national organization Ascension Health Senior Care, creating the second-largest not-for-profit long-term care provider in the country.

Ascension Health Senior Care will oversee a total of 5,568 senior care/senior living beds and three PACE (Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly) programs totaling 725 enrollees.

The senior services ministry will include independent living, assisted living and skilled nursing sites, as well as PACE programs, that are a part of Ascension Health, Ascension’s health care delivery organization.

With 34 senior care facilities and more than 5,500 beds, the number of senior living units under Ascension Health Senior Care places it in the top-five of the LeadingAge/Ziegler list of 100 largest not-for-profit multi-site senior living organizations.

And the move could signal more activity among nonprofit health systems with senior living properties under their care umbrella, based on the competitive advantage a large, senior care-focused parent organization brings.

They’re going to be able to compete by doing exactly what Ascension is doing with this roll-out of their senior living programs — creating a very distinct focus on their senior living communities and programs,” says Ziegler Senior Vice President Lynn M. Daly, of the Ascension move. “This is really putting them in a position of strength and opportunity for continued strength going forward.”

By separating its senior care operations from the Ascension health system as a whole, the senior living facilities will have the potential for greater access to capital without having to compete with their acute care counterparts, and appropriate human resources and senior living-specific benchmarks, Daly says.

“We are seeing the health systems starting to look at their senior living assets strategically in terms of what they want to do with them — either rolling them out [as with Ascension], investing in them or divestiture,” Daly says.

Ascension sees the move as a competitive advantage that will allow for greater investment in facilities and equipment, better resource allocation, more efficient operations and growth opportunities, the company says.

“Combining Ascension Health’s senior care facilities into a single operating unit will help ensure best practices are systematized and standardized, intellectual capital is more effectively shared and strategy is implemented consistently at all of our facilities,” says Mark Frey, Ascension Health Ministry market leader for senior services. “Seniors will increasingly demand more from providers – more value, better outcomes, greater involvement in decision-making. A unified approach to senior care will increase the likelihood that we will successfully meet expectations.”

Headquarters for Ascension Health Senior Care will be located in St. Louis, and the facilities will be divided into east and west regions for the purposes of administration and organization. The senior leadership will centralize most functional areas including finance, quality, human resources, supply chain and IT.

“[An] increasing number of seniors with increasing expectations of their providers will necessitate more focused, creative and effective approaches to their care – this is best done through an organization that works exclusively in this area,” says Fray, who is also the president and CEO of Alexian Brothers Health System, part of Ascension.****

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 COMPANY NEWS:

Events (2014)

  • Gill Group plans to attend the National Housing & Rehabilitation Association's Summer Institute August 16th - 17th in Newport, RI. 
  • Gill Group plans to attend the Southeastern Affordable Housing Management Associations Regional Conference for Affordable Housing August 10th - 12th in Ft. Lauderdale, FL.
    • Cash Gill will be giving a lecture on Rent Comparability Studies
  • Gill Group plans to attend the Midwest Buyers/Sellers Conference August 18th - 19th in Indianapolis, IN. 
    • Cash Gill will be giving a lecture on Appraisals and CNAs
  • Gill Group provided RAD and Affordable Housing Training July 29th - 30th in Alexandria, LA. 
    • Cash Gill gave a lecture on Appraisals, Market Studies, Rent Comparability Studies and Capital Needs Assessments (CNAs)
  • Gill Group attended the Texas Affiliation of Affordable Housing Providers' Annual Conference July 28th - 30th in Austin, TX.  
    • Jerry Anderson presented on the "Rental Assistance Demonstration" panel 
  • Gill Group attended the National Council of State Housing Agencies’ Annual Housing Credit Connect June 25th – 27th in Chicago, IL.
    • Cash Gill presented on a panel on Thursday, June 26th, entitled “Rural Development Opportunities.”
    • Jerry Anderson presented on a panel on Thursday, June 26th, entitled “RAD Report.”
  • Cash Gill attended the Missouri Real Estate Appraisers Commission’s Quarterly Meeting as an Active Commissioner June 17th – 18th in Jefferson City, MO.
  • Gill Group attended National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials’ Annual Conference June 16th – 17th in Orlando, FL.
    • Cash Gill presented on a panel on Monday, June 16th, entitled “Affordable Housing Appraisals, Market Studies, Rent Comparability Studies and Rent Reasonableness Studies.”
  • Gill Group attended HUD’s RAD Training June 4th – 5th in Washington, DC.
  • Gill Group provided affordable housing and RAD training at Great Lakes Capital Fund’s University of Affordable Housing May 22nd in South Bend, IN.
  • Gill Group attended the Council for Rural Housing & Development of Ohio’s Midwest Rural Housing Summit May 19th – 20th in Columbus, OH.
    • Cash Gill will be speaking on the Rural Housing Market Research panel on May 20th.
  • Gill Group provided affordable housing training at a regional seminar April 29th in Franklin, TN.
  • Gill Group attended Bank of Advance’s Annual Retreat and Meeting March 20th – 22nd in Norfolk, AR.
  • Cash Gill attended the Missouri Real Estate Appraisers Commission’s Quarterly Meeting as an Active Commission March 18th – 20th in Jefferson City, MO.
  • Gill Group attended MACO’s Annual Retreat and Meeting March 13th – 16th in Biloxi, MS.
  • Gill Group attended the National Housing and Rehabilitation Association’s (NH&RA’s) Annual Meeting February 19th – 22nd in Palm Beach, FL
  • Gill Group attended the Council for Affordable Rural Housing’s (CARH’s) Mid-Year Meeting January 26th – 28th in Las Vegas, NV.

Events (2013)

  • Gill Group attended 22 conferences and meetings throughout the United States in 2013

GROWTH (2013 - Highlights):

  • Gill Group expanded our cutting-edge market analysis software and added our own in-house developed needs assessment software for CNAs, PNAs, PCNAs, PCAs, RPCAs, and every other acronym for this type of service.  
  • Gill Group added 4 offices with appraisers, market analysts, engineers and architects.
    • Within the offices are three architects, one MAI appraiser, two general certified appraisers, five market analysts and 10 additional support staff. 
  • Gill Group expanded the footprint of its subsidiary, National Title & Escrow, to cover the entire United States with a local presence.

Events (2012)

  • Gill Group attended 20 conferences and meetings throughout the United States in 2012

GROWTH (2012 - Highlights):

  • Gill Group developed cutting-edge market analysis software that will allow us to do preliminary analysis that is subject-specific in any market in the United States within minutes.  
  • Gill Group added 11 offices with appraisers, market analysts, engineers and architects.
    • The offices now employ an additional 34 people.
  • Gill Group expanded coverage of its subsidiary, National Title & Escrow, to cover the entire United States.
  • Gill Group expanded coverage of its subsidiary, Gill Insurance Group, to cover the entire United States.

  Gill Group has published the following:

  • New York Real Estate Journal - How can low-income housing facilities translate into high profits?
  • New York Real Estate Journal - Up, up and away: Home mortgage interest rates and gasoline prices continue ascending.
  • Tax Credit Advisor - Boston MSA Market Snapshot
  • Tax Credit Advisor - Seattle MSA Market Snapshot
  • Northeast Industrial Development Resource Guide - What Appraisers Know About Investing.
  • Affordable Housing Finance – Urban and Rural Market Studies.
  • Tax Credit Advisor – LIHTC Appraisals 101

Cash Gill, MAI has had the opportunity to speak on the following topics:

  • (Indianapolis, IN) National Council of Affordable Housing Market Analysts - Maximize Your Market: Understanding the Methodology Behind Market Studies.
  • (Reno, NV) Nevada Council of Affordable and Rural Housing - Don't Get Caught in the Red. New Guidelines for Audits and Inspections.
  • (Washington, DC) The Institute for Professional and Executive Development - Nonrecourse HUD Deals - So You Closed Your Nonrecourse HUD Deal. Now What? And Is It Really Nonrecourse?
  • (Arlington, VA) Council for Affordable and Rural Housing - Property Valuation: The Correct Way to Value Properties.
  • (New Orleans, LA) National Council of Affordable Housing Market Analysts - Affordable Housing Site Analysis
  • (Las Vegas, NV) Nevada Council of Affordable and Rural Housing - Auditing and Accounting Guidelines for Section 42 Low Income Housing Tax Credits.
  • (Washington, DC) Council for Affordable and Rural Housing - Rural Development Appraisals and Market Studies
  • (Miami, FL) Council for Affordable and Rural Housing - The Equity Market - Impact on Rural Housing
  • (Washington, DC) Council for Affordable and Rural Housing - How to Foster Affordable Green and Rural Housing Needs Assessments
  • (Indianapolis, IN) Affordable Housing Association of Indiana - Market Analysis – Best Ways Use Market Studies to Ensure Application Points
  • (Portland, ME) Enterprise Buyer/Seller Conference for RRH 515 Properties – Valuing the Product. What Is My Development Worth?
  • (Washington, DC) National Housing and Rehabilitation Association – Financing and Underwriting Special Needs Housing.
  • (Atlanta, GA) National Council of State Housing Agencies – Comprehensive Market Analysis.
  • (Chicago, IL) AHF Live – Strategies for Rural Deals.
  • (Dallas, TX) Crittenden Multifamily – Financing Special Use Properties.
  • (Washington, DC) Council for Affordable Rural Housing – Rural Housing Preservation
  • (Denver, CO) National Council of State Housing Agencies – Rural Housing Strategies
  • (Denver, CO) National Council of State Housing Agencies – Y15: Preservation and Disposition Seminar
  • (San Antonio, TX) Rural Rental Housing Association – LIHTC Legislative Update
  • (Key Largo, FL) Council for Affordable Rural Housing – How National Appraisal Practices Impact USDA Assisted Properties
  • (San Francisco, CA) National Council of State Housing Agencies – Changes and Challenges in Rural Housing Development
  • (Chicago, IL) AHF Live – Preservation of Older LIHTC Deals
  • (Franklin, TN) Regional Affordable Housing and RAD Training – Valuation, Feasibility and Capital Needs Assessments
  • (Columbus, OH) Council for Rural Housing & Development of Ohio – Rural Housing Market Research
  •  (South Bend, IN) Great Lakes Capital Fund’s University of Affordable Housing – Valuation Risks Using Financing for RAD Deals
  • (Chicago, IL) National Council of State Housing Agencies – Rural Development Opportunities
  • (Orlando, FL) National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials – Affordable Housing Appraisals, Market Studies, Rent Comparability Studies and Rent Reasonableness Studies
  • (Alexandria, LA) Regional Affordable Housing and RAD Training – Valuation, Feasibility and Capital Needs Assessments (Upcoming)
  • (Ft. Lauderdale, FL) Southeastern Affordable Housing Management Association (SAHMA) – Rent Comparability Studies 101 (Upcoming)
  • (Indianapolis, IN) Midwest Buyer/Seller Conference – CNAs and Appraisals (Upcoming)

 

 *as seen on hud.gov

**as seen on multifamilybiz.com

**as seen on housingfinance.com

****as seen on seniorhousingnews.com