JUNE 2020

“We have had to adapt to new ways to deliver information in real time to address your needs… ”

First, I would like to say on behalf of our entire Board of Directors and staff of the Apartment Association, we trust you and your families are doing well and safe during these unprecedented times. It is important to remember that we are all in this together. The outbreak of COVID-19 over the last few months has been a real challenge throughout the world.

The economic damage can be seen throughout every sector of the globe. No industry has been spared from the economic damage. We will be living a new normal, which at this point we do not yet know what it will look like. As we try to make some sense of this, it is important to remember we were in a housing crisis before COVID-19 began.

As an Association in an industry that is one of the key drivers of our economy, we have made every effort to adapt and be able to provide you the timely information that we, as housing providers, need in order to maneuver through these challenging times.

We have had to adapt to new ways to deliver information in real time to address your needs and play a pivotal role in the success of our industry. No industry was as nimble as we realize that we should have been, but together with our colleagues we are working to fill the void and develop ways to continue to add value to you, our members.

If there has ever been a time when we need to reach out to our elected officials, it is now. There is a major misconception of what we provide as rental housing providers. There are very few industries that provide as much as we do as key drivers of the economy. We must be able to provide the facts of what we do and the large number of people we employ. As an industry, think of the number of painters, electricians, plumbers, gardeners, etc., and the money we spend with major suppliers such as Home Depot, Lowes and the small hardware stores that rely on our business.

We must deliver the message that we are the ones that provide shelter to the tenants everyone is talking about protecting. The question is who is looking out for us? My answer is our Apartment Association, along with our industry partners, and all of us coming together to protect each other, our industry, and our investment in rental housing.

We are no different than any other business where we invest our capital and time in expectation of a decent return. What can we do as individuals to help our industry? First, we must all be informed as things are changing at warp speed. Look out for our Red Alerts and take the appropriate action noted in the Red Alert. We are at a time when we can no longer meet in person, so we must all adapt to the new way of communicating. Our Association is in the process of delivering information to you on new platforms in the digital world, and we realize that this is new to a lot of us including myself. Change is inevitable, so we must adapt. We must stay engaged and connected and we will get through this together.

It is important that you take the time and read all the information contained in this article and magazine, especially the legislative update provided in the Sacramento Report by Ron Kingston, our Sacramento lobbyist, and President of California Strategic Advisors. Even though our office has not been open for walk-in traffic, we continue to be there by phone and email. Our ability and commitment to provide service has not changed; and, in fact, has increased through our new platforms.

Along with the entire Board, our staff and myself, we are here to serve you. Stay safe, and I am looking forward to seeing each of you as soon as possible. Be well.