Affordable Housing Supply During Pandemic

Adrian Washington Receiving Colvin Award 2018.03.07

NDC CEO Adrian Washington receives Innovation and Entrepreneurship Award from University of Maryland

Adrian Washington Award

The University of Maryland’s Colvin Institute of Real Estate Development honored five outstanding individuals on March 6, 2018 for their innovative and entrepreneurial approaches to real estate development. The 2018 Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Real Estate Awards recognized Horning Brothers’ Joseph Horning and David Roodberg, Kelly Sweeny McShane, Abraham Rosenthal and Adrian Washington for their outstanding work in revitalization and placemaking, creative problem-solving, collaboration and long-term solutions to urban challenges in the state, region and beyond.

“The 4th Annual Maryland Awards for Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Real Estate celebrates individuals and companies who have made a difference in real estate, impacting their communities in extraordinary ways,” said Dr. Margaret McFarland, Clinical Professor of Real Estate Development and Founding Director of the Colvin Institute. “We delight not only in honoring our 2018 recipients, but in showcasing the ‘best of the best’ in transformational, impactful real estate. These individuals inspire our Master of Real Estate Development students, alumni, the university and friends.”

Sonia Hirt, Dean of the University of Maryland School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation [MAPP] opened the evening by celebrating the multi-disciplinary nature of real estate development. The event is sponsored by MAPP in conjunction with the Robert H. Smith School of Business and the A. James Clark School of Engineering. The awards were presented by UMD’s Chief Strategy Officer for Economic Development Ken Ulman and Michael E. Johnson, Principal of UrbanCore Development LLC (and a past award-recipient) served as Master of Ceremonies.

This year’s honorees excel in different aspects of real estate and offer diverse perspectives, but all strive to create vibrant, economically and socially responsible assets that enhance the built and natural environment.

Joseph Horning, Founder of Horning Brothers and David Roodberg, CEO and President, accepted an award on behalf of Horning Brothers. Founded more than 60 years ago, Horning Brothers engages in innovative and impactful real estate projects; they entered areas of The District of Columbia when most people were fleeing to the suburbs. Their projects have helped transform the H Street corridor and Columbia Heights areas into the sought-after neighborhoods they are today. Their newest project in Ward 8—Stanton Square—will provide both market rate and affordable housing.

Kelly Sweeney McShane has dedicated her 20+ year career to providing assistance, opportunity and support to low-income families and the homeless through Community of Hope (COH). Collaborating with developers, stakeholders and other service industries, Kelly has spearheaded The Commons at Stanton Square, working collaboratively with Horning Brothers and Martha’s Table to bring social, behavioral and medical support services for area families. Kelly was honored for her tireless efforts to improve the lives of homeless and low-income families’ her entrepreneurial skills that have grown COH to a $19million annual budget with a focus on innovative system change.

AW speaking at Colvin Award 2018.03.07

Adrian Washington is known as founder of D.C.’s Neighborhood Development Company (NDC), a real estate development company focusing on revitalizing emerging urban neighborhoods while preserving existing culture and diversity. Adrian’s award was in honor of his many creative and transformative real estate projects in emerging neighborhoods, and for his leadership in transforming the Anacostia Waterfront. Adrian has been a major asset to the university and the real estate program since 2008, providing guest lectures, mentorship and site visits for students and faculty.

A forty-year veteran of real estate development and architecture, Abraham Rosenthal capitalizes on creative problem-solving to create exciting mixed use and retail properties, such as Canton Crossing and McHenry Row. His creative financing skills find ways to create new and exciting community-enhancing properties. Abe is a UMD graduate in architecture and an adjunct professor for UMD’s Real Estate Development Program.

“Each year we have the opportunity to learn from trailblazers in innovation-driven development, and this year is no exception,” said Sonia Hirt, Dean of the School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. “Each of the honorees exemplifies what it means to be a leader in this critical field and is a model of achievement. And, of course, we are particularly proud of our own alum, Abe Rosenthal.”

The evening kicked off with a keynote address by journalist Daniel Brook, who recently released his book, A History of Future Cities. Bringing the history, design and culture of global cities—Dubai, Shanghai, Mumbai and St. Petersburg—to the audience, Brook’s keynote discussed what matters to real estate with a unique and unexpected twist.

Real estate professionals from all sectors of the industry, government leaders, along with administrators, faculty, alumni and students attended the dinner and awards ceremony to pay homage to the honorees and support future leaders in the profession. Proceeds from the event go towards scholarships for UMD’s Real Estate Development Program, one of only twenty-five multi-disciplinary real estate programs in the U.S.

cutting the red ribbon

Housing Was in Full Bloom in June

As published in the July 2017 DHCD Connection Newsletter

Future Bowen Flats resident Tamekkia Key (center) joins Deputy Mayor Brian Kenner, Adrian Washington of Neighborhood Development Co. (both to her left), DHCD Director Polly Donaldson and DC Housing Finance Agency (DCHFA) Executive Director Todd Lee at June 23 ribbon cutting.

District Agencies Celebrated Successes
For the second year in a row, Mayor Bowser shown a spotlight on the District’s affordable housing and community development successes, during June Housing Bloom. Over 100 events were held by DHCD, other housing agencies and community partners in this month-long celebration. For example, we held a Saturday College on housing rules for landlords, tenants and realtors on June 3. A week later, we sponsored a FamilyFest at Greenleaf Recreation Center in Ward 6, where kids learned about healthy eating tips and persons of all ages received information on District housing, financial and other resources. Toward the end of the month, in addition to the Housing Expo and Scissors and Shovels events discussed below, we also held a hearing on our Annual Action Plan to get community feedback.

Housing Expo exhibit hall

Record 6,000+ Registered for 9th Annual DC Housing Expo and Home Show
In its ninth year, the DC Housing Expo and Home Show was bigger and better than ever. Over 6,000 persons—a record number—registered for the event, which featured over 150 housing-related exhibits, including a popular “tiny home” that attendees could walk through. We offered over 20 workshops; some classes, like on inclusionary zoning and home purchase assistance, had standing-room-only crowds. The aroma of freshly cooked salmon filled the air thanks to celebrity chefs who gave healthy cooking demonstrations, seniors played bingo, and a lively crowd near the stage enjoyed vying for prizes and giveaways. Our keynote speaker was Mayor Bowser, who highlighted her administration’s progress on affordable housing projects and noted: “We have a lot of housing resources available in the District, and through events like the Housing Expo we’re working to make sure people know about them.”

Mayor Bowser gives remarks at 4000 Kansas Avenue NW groundbreaking.

On June 23, Shovel in One Hand, Scissors in Another
We joined Mayor Bowser on June 23 for Scissors and Shovels 2.0, a one-day flurry of affordable housing groundbreakings and ribbon cuttings throughout the District. The day started with the mayor breaking ground on a 19-unit affordable housing building at 4000 Kansas Avenue, NW in Ward 4. Next stop was the ribbon cutting for the historic Phyllis Wheatley YWCA at 901 Rhode Island Avenue, NW in Ward 6. This property was renovated and reconfigured into 84 units of permanent supportive housing for formerly homeless women. Director Donaldson and Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development Brian Kenner ended the day with a ribbon cutting ceremony for Bowen Flats, a new 41-unit affordable housing project in Ward 8. During her remarks, Donaldson noted how, at “no time in our District’s history have we invested more and housed more residents in a two-year period—and we’re not slowing down anytime soon.”

Making the Dream of Affordable Homeownership Possible

In June, Jackie Clauss experienced one of the most memorable moments of her life when she became a first-time homeowner. “My three kids and I are forever grateful,” said Clauss, a D.C. Public Schools teacher. “My family was blessed with a home. It was a long way, but we got there.”

Clauss purchased her first home through the District’s inclusionary zoning Program, which offers eligible households an opportunity to purchase or rent an affordable housing unit through a lottery process. She also was a recipient of down payment and closing cost assistance through the District’s Home Purchase Assistance Program (HPAP).

“I appreciate the different parts involved in the process to make this happen,” said Clauss. “[DHCD has] made the dream of affordable homeownership possible.”

Innovative Strategies and Projects Result in Awards, Accolades

The District’s multi-pronged approach to housing production and preservation, homeownership, and development of vacant properties is winning national recognition. DHCD was announced on April 28 as a finalist for the Urban Land Institute’s Larson Housing Policy Leadership Award. This annual award, provided by ULI’s Terwilliger Center for Housing, recognizes innovative ways the public sector is addressing the nation’s affordable housing crisis. The winner will be announced in September.

Three affordable housing projects that received DHCD financing recently received accolades:

  1. The Washington Business Journal honored The Beacon Center, a 99-unit mixed-use project at 6100 Georgia Avenue NW, and the John and Jill Ker Conway Residence, a 124-unit project at 1005 North Capitol Street NE, as standouts for the best 25 real estate deals for 2016.
  2. The Conway Residence also received the 2017 Urban Land Institute’s (ULI) Washington TRENDS Award for Excellence in Housing Development.
  3. The Girard Street Senior Apartments was awarded best small affordable housing project by the Housing Association of Nonprofit Developers.

On a related note, Director Donaldson was honored to represent the District during the Daniel Rose Fellowship study tour of Seattle and Alaska this spring.

Springing Into Step: Expanding Affordable Housing, Transforming Vacant Properties

This spring and early summer, we were pleased to announce news on several projects that will provide over 100 units of affordable housing to District residents:

And more is to come. Our Spring 2017 funding notice and request for proposals (RFP) recently closed and proposals that will produce and preserve more affordable housing units are now being evaluated.

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Converted condo buildings in Petworth designed to appeal to first-time buyers

As published on thewashingtonpost.com

When two properties became available in the sought-after neighborhood surrounding the Georgia Avenue-Petworth Metro station in Northwest Washington, developers snapped them up. Both sites have been converted into condo buildings known as the Montage. The north building is sold out; the south building is 75 percent sold.

“The north building had been a single-family home that had fallen into disrepair and since the zoning allowed for higher density development we were able to turn the property into condos,” says Adrian Washington, founder and chief executive of Neighborhood Development Co. in the District. “The south building was an office building with these interesting metal panels on the outside, so we preserved a few of those to use in our office space.”

Washington says the one- and two-bedroom units in both buildings were designed to appeal to first-time buyers, so each building has a higher number of the more affordable one-bedroom units.

The slightly larger south building, which has 20 units on five floors, includes an elevator.

“We debated about whether to include an elevator since this could have been a walk-up building,” Washington says. “Ultimately, we decided it was worth the extra cost and loss of some space to have this amenity for residents.”

Quartz in bathroom: Five units are available in the Montage South building, including Unit 501, a two-bedroom, two-bathroom penthouse with 970 square feet. This unit, priced at $589,900, has a monthly condo fee of $409.

The unit has 11-foot-high ceilings and wide plank oak flooring. Like all of the units that face Georgia Avenue, this residence has a Juliet balcony with a glass door in the living area and in the master bedroom. Just inside the front door is a closet with a full-size washer and dryer, and a coat closet.

The open floor plan includes a kitchen with white cabinets, stainless-steel appliances and quartz counters, including a large peninsula with space for a breakfast bar. The kitchen faces the living and dining area, which has a wall of tall glass doors and a transom window. The unit has one bedroom with a double-door closet and a bathroom across the hall. The master suite has a larger bedroom and a large walk-in closet linking the bedroom and the bathroom. All the bathrooms have white quartz counters, gray tile flooring and black hardware.

On the lower level, Unit 103, a one-bedroom and den residence with one bathroom, is also available. The 790-square-foot unit, priced at $399,900, has a monthly condo fee of $334. This unit has tile flooring that resembles wood because the floor is below ground and includes a private terrace adjacent to a courtyard. The den at the back of the unit has a closet and is next to the full bathroom. The master bedroom is at the front of the unit next to the living and dining area and open kitchen.

A first-floor residence at the front of the building, Unit 201, has 676 square feet and is priced at $374,900 with a monthly condo fee of $285. This unit has one bedroom and one full bathroom, tall windows and Juliet balconies overlooking Georgia Avenue, and an open-floor-plan kitchen, living and dining area.

Monument and Cathedral views: The smallest one-bedroom residence, Unit 402, has 584 square feet and is priced at $354,900 with a monthly condo fee of $245. This unit has an interior bedroom with a transom window opening to allow in limited light. The open living and dining area has a galley-style kitchen along one wall without an island. The entire front of the unit is floor-to-ceiling windows with views of Petworth.

“The biggest challenge with this project is that it’s one of the first buildings to be built under the District’s new green building code,” Washington says. “Both have green roofs and state-of-the-art storm-water retention systems.”

Washington says that while Neighborhood Development Co. was voluntarily doing green building before the Montage, there were extra design challenges and costs this time because the requirements were new to the company, to the permit office and to inspectors.

The 20-unit Montage South building has a roof terrace shared by all residents with views of the Washington Monument and Washington National Cathedral. In addition, the building will have a landscaped courtyard space shared with the community.

The only other building amenity is secure entry. No parking is included, because of the expectation that most residents will use Metrorail and buses rather than drive. Those who do have cars can park on nearby streets.

What’s nearby: The Petworth neighborhood has expanded its amenities with new shops and restaurants in recent years. The Montage is within a few blocks of the Petworth Library, Petworth Citizen bar and reading room, Upshur Street Books, an organic market and a grocery store. Nearby are Qualia Coffee, Domku Bar and Cafe, and new eateries, including a Japanese restaurant and the Latin American wine bar and restaurant Ruta Del Vino.

 “We’ve been surprised at the way this neighborhood has become a dining destination just since we started building the Montage,” Washington says.

In warm weather, the Petworth Jazz Project showcases local jazz talent on the lawn at Eighth and Taylor streets NW. From May through November, the Petworth Community Market takes place every Saturday at Ninth and Upshur streets NW and includes a farmers market, music and crafts.

Schools: Powell Elementary, Raymond Education Campus, Roosevelt High.

Transit: Numerous bus lines serve Georgia Avenue and the vicinity. Montage residents can walk a few blocks south to the Georgia Avenue/Petworth Metro station to catch the Green and Yellow lines.

The Montage

4308 Georgia Ave. NW, Washington

The condos are priced from $354,900 to $589,900.

Builder: Neighborhood Development Co.

Features: The units have wide plank oak flooring, 10½ foot or higher ceilings, quartz counters in the kitchen and bathrooms, under-cabinet lighting, gas cooking and stainless-steel appliances in the kitchen, and a full-size washer and dryer.

Bedrooms/bathrooms: 1 or 2 /1 or 2.

Square footage: Approximately 584 to 970.

Condo association fees: $245 to $409 per month.

View models: Open Sundays from 1 p.m to 3 p.m.

Contact: Urban Pace representatives Kate Hanley at 202-774-6022 or Gabrielle Grant at 202-302-6754 or www.themontagedc.com.

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Building With All Affordable Housing Set to Replace Vacant Parking Lot in Ward 7

As published on washingtoncitypaper.com

By 2020, River Terrace could see nearly five dozen units of affordable housing where an empty parking lot now sits, near Benning Road NE.

The Neighborhood Development Company on Tuesday submitted a planned unit development application to the D.C. Zoning Commission, seeking to build a 59-unit multifamily building at 3450 Eads St. NE., including atop what’s currently a public alley. The filing, first picked up by UrbanTurf, indicates that all of the project’s units would be set aside for tenants earning less than 50 percent of the area median income (in 2015, $109,000 for a family of four). The building would contain a total 68,000 square feet within a site measuring 18,000 square feet. At its maximum height, it would be five stories tall, and step down to three stories across from two-story houses to its west.

NDC’s filing notes that the proposed location is desirable because of the expected eastward extension of the D.C. streetcar as well as the eventual redevelopment of the old Pepco station that abuts the Anacostia River behind elevated Metro tracks. (More about the latter here.)

“Approximately 500 feet from the Property, north of Benning Road NE is Pepco’s 77-acre Benning Service Center. The Benning Service Center is the site of the former Benning Power Plant, which was closed in 2012. Pepco continues to maintain a presence at this location, and it’s website indicates that approximately 700 employees work there today. With the closure of the Plant, there are likely to be signifcant economic development opportunities on this site near the Property in the future.”

As for existing public transit, 3450 Eads St. NE is roughly half a mile from the Minnesota Avenue Metrorail station and within a quarter mile of the X1, X2, X3, and X4 Metrobus routes. Between it and Benning Road NE lie vacant and commercial lots; to its east an empty public lot.

NDC’s filing comes as D.C. faces significant affordability challenges, particularly among low-income workers and people of color. This isn’t lost on the developer, which says in its application that “the Project’s creation of additional rental housing supply… is generally viewed as addressing one of the direst needs in the District: affordable housing.” It continues: “The addition of residents to the neighborhood will contribute to the customer base for nearby retail and service establishments, provide ‘eyes on the street’ along a currently vacant stretch of Eads Street NE, and send an important signal of private investment in new development along Benning Road NE east of the Anacostia River.”

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All-affordable, multi-family residential project planned by Benning Road NE

As published on dc.curbed.com

By Benning Road NE, there are plans for a new residential development on a site that currently houses a vacant surface parking lot and a storage shed. In the zoning application filed, it states that the all-affordable, rental project will house 59 units, 22 below-grade garage spaces, and 23 bicycle spaces. There will also be an approximately 1,200-square-foot amenity space envisioned for a community room.

The development, located at 3450 Eads Street NE, will be for households earning less than 50 percent of the area median income.

The 56-foot-high building will be divided into two portions, one which spans three stories and another which spans five stories. The five-story portion will house a lobby and leasing or management office. The three-story portion will contain two multi-level units facing the street with separate entries. There will also be five “vegetative roofs,” ranging in size from 200 to 1,500 square feet.

According to the application filed, the developer hopes to begin construction by the third quarter of 2018 with a delivery by the fourth quarter of 2019.

UrbanTurf was the first to report on the development.

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The Mayor’s $100M A Year For Affordable Housing Isn’t Close To Enough

As published on bisnow.com 

With more Millennials and other out-of-towners moving into the District for a taste of the fast-paced life in our nation’s capital, combined with “up-and-coming” neighborhoods sprouting like weeds—along with their rents—Washington, DC, faces an escalating affordable housing issue. To tackle these issues, we’re hosting our Fifth Annual Affordable Housing Forum on Thursday, March 24.

One of our speakers, Enterprise Community Partners VP David Bowers (snapped at our forum last year), says that while champions of the issue, as well as the DC government, have made progress, our city still has a persistent problem that isn’t going away any time soon. It’s going to take more than construction and fundraising to make things happen.

With Mayor Muriel Bowser’s investment of $100M a year into the issue, and the continuing average of 1,000 to 2,000 affordable units preserved and produced per year, David says “it’s progress, but not ‘Mission Accomplished.’ What we are doing is nice, but it’s not enough.”

Enterprise Community Partners, which finances affordable housing projects throughout the region, also works on affordable housing policies and operates a development arm in Baltimore. Currently, it’s in the midst of several DC-area projects with one end in mind: to multiply the number of affordable places to live.

Since financial support isn’t enough to tackle the issue at its root, maybe it’s time to forge alliances with the people who have the same passion and influence.

That’s why David notes that one of the big things Enterprise has been pouring energy into is convening the Greater Washington Housing Leaders Group—an alliance of leaders from about 15 different organizations and agencies to identify solutions for this persisting dearth of reasonably priced places for locals to call home. And, in case the government isn’t doing the proper research to determine the exact resources it needs, Enterprise certainly is on it.

“A big piece for us now is quantifying how much money it will take to produce and preserve the units needed for folks to live affordably,” David says. “We are putting together reports on this data. For DC specifically, the estimate is that between now and 2023, there will be nearly 19,000 new low-income households.”

According to HUD, “low income” for the whole region means an annual income of about $87k for a family of four. What’s scary, David says, is that 53,000 of these households in DC alone spend more than half of their income on either rent or mortgage.

Because affordable housing clearly can’t be solved in one fell swoop, there are several local, market-rate developers, like Jair Lynch Real Estate Partners, also getting their hands dirty.

Jair Lynch investment manager Phuc Tran, another speaker at this month’s forum, comes to the event with the perspective of a company maintaining a portfolio consisting of market-rate apartments as well as affordable refuges.

With affordable housing issues as part of the foundation of Jair Lynch, it has to date developed or acquired over 1,000 units of affordable housing throughout DC—in neighborhoods from U Street to Petworth.

These days, Phuc says, “we are working on a new stand-alone senior affordable building as part of our McMillan Reservoir project (above) off North Capitol.” To maintain the quality of the residences, Phuc adds, “McMillan will also include additional affordable units dispersed through the two market-rate buildings we have planned for there.”

Phuc said even the devoted efforts of developers like Jair Lynch and other organizations with a focus on affordable housing, are not enough to prevent it from becoming an endangered residential species next decade. He says the Urban Land Institute estimates that the city will need 20,000 to 30,000 affordable units by 2020 to meet the needs of low-income households.

“So the challenge is enormous,” Phuc says. “We need more money and creative solutions if we want to protect what economic diversity remains in the city.”

Adrian Washington, another voice at our Forum, is CEO and founder of Neighborhood Development Co (NDC), another “balanced” developer that decorates the region with market-rate housing complexes while maintaining a strong affordable housing practice.

Having witnessed the issue progress since founding NDC in 1999, he, too, agrees that the city’s $100M a year annual investment in affordable housing is a great leap, but it won’t be enough to meet the continuing need for lower-cost living. And, NDC has already started getting creative.

So, aside from constructing and developing 300k SF (or 300 units) of affordable housing throughout the city over the last five years (including a 41-unit, 40k SF building under construction in Anacostia), he says NDC has also been looking into innovative ways to develop housing that can remain within the means of the growing number of low-income tenants in every DC neighborhood.

“What developers like us want to look at are other innovative ways of producing affordable housing through other techniques,” Adrian explains, echoing Phuc in his emphasis on the need for creativity in this market. “So, we’ve even looked at producing housing from shipping containers.”

To learn more about what the experts are doing to put more than just a Band-Aid on the lack of reasonable rents in DC, sign up for our fifth annual Affordable Housing Forum event on March 29 at the Atlas Performing Arts Center on H St NE here.

 

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Real Estate Panel: Independent Investors Can Survive Big-Time Competition

As published on scs.georgetown.edu

A panel of six prominent real estate professionals recently met at Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Studies (SCS) to discuss how individual investors, developers, and owners make decisions about investments in the community within today’s real estate market.

The focus of the discussion, titled “Investing in Today’s Real Estate Market: How Individual Real Estate Investors Survive in an Institutional World,” was on smaller developers competing with large institutional investors for sites and projects. While small developers gladly take on investors in their projects, they have a hard time competing for sites against funds that will generally pay more and accept lower returns for a variety of reasons, including different risk assessments.

But is it really a matter of survival? And, if so, can the small investor survive in this market, or even thrive?

The short answers, according to the panelists, were “yes” on all counts. Yet what was most interesting at the forum, sponsored by Georgetown’s Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate (RE) program, was the diversity of responses to this challenge. Some panelists said younger investors could get ahead by avoiding the pressures of high-profile cities and moving to smaller, undeserved markets. Others said it’s best to work from a geographical area one knows—even if it’s Washington or New York—and use that knowledge to find deals the big players may have missed.

Discovering New Markets

Matthew Crossley, an alumni of the RE program and Vice President of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, one of the nation’s largest commercial real estate service firms, said that overlooked markets in smaller cities are a good place for individual investors to put together deals.

“Sometimes, you can go into a market and see it with new eyes—and that’s what I would encourage,” Crossley said.

Panelist Gene Parker, Jr., President of Continental Realty Corporation, which develops, owns, manages, and leases commercial and residential properties in Maryland and Southwest Florida, agreed, but added a caveat: “We don’t want to go into a market and do something we’ve never done before,” he said.

Other panelists say profits can be made in Washington—if developers are willing to do their homework and be patient.

With “so much money chasing deals,” the competition in places like Washington, D.C., can be steep, said Jill Homan, Principal of Javelin 19 Investments, which invests in real estate and real estate-related assets in the Mid-Atlantic region. “You can find yourself being very smart and not doing a lot of deals.”

Thriving in a Hot Market

The D.C. market is hot right now, land prices continue to rise, and big institutional investors are increasing their market exposure. These funds have the capital to invest in expensive, high-profile projects that promise their clients steady, if not necessarily spectacular, returns.

These large investors are also getting into the development business themselves, buying up properties at the outset rather than simply waiting for smaller investors to turn them into revenue-generating projects, said Glenn Williamson, Interim Faculty Director for Georgetown’s Real Estate program.

Competition from the big players is one concern. So is the possibility that future interest-rate rises—or a new recession—could erase profits from even the most thoughtfully conceived plan. (Though Parker noted that “D.C. comes back quickly” after economic downturns.)

“In this city, you’re going to buy it and then [hope that] all the market forces work perfectly,” said Michael Darby, Principal of Monument Realty. “It’s not easy.”

Not easy, perhaps, but doable. Looking into the mostly-young audience of Real Estate students and others interested in the profession, Darby said Millennials have one advantage in the real estate business: they know better than most how the city’s demographics, work patterns, and lifestyles are changing and what these changes could mean for the built environment of the future.

“There’s enough room for people in this room to do deals in this city,” Darby said.

 

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Condos at O Street NW combine artistry of the past and up-to-date amenities

When Merle Goodman, a home buyer from Tampa, started searching for a condominium in Washington with her real estate agent, Sean Aalai of Lindsay Reishman Real Estate, her goal was to find a home with some historic charm, modern amenities and plenty of natural light. A location with easy access to friends and family was also a priority.

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