Multifamily Downturn Q&A – April 27th, 2020

For the past few weeks, we have been holding a weekly “downturn” roundtable discussion for our clients. This group includes some of the most experienced pricing and revenue management practitioners in the industry. Each week we have been summarizing insights shared during our latest discussion.
Below we share our observations of the first five weeks of this recession, with the Q&A that followed the presentation. All responses are anonymous. If you have different insights, opinions, or questions that you would like us to address in the coming weeks, please leave them in the comments or contact us through the site.
Five weeks into the recession, we have been surprised to see that things are not as bad as most of us predicted. Specifically, collections have been much stronger than feared, and occupancy has largely held in most markets. Anecdotally we have heard about a curious, large pick up in leasing the past two weeks. 
We did some analysis on a set of mostly secondary markets and saw that leasing was off 54% YOY week of March 22nd; now, the week of April 12th was off only 13%. Note: this may be partially affected by differences in the timing of Easter. We also did this analysis on a mostly bi-coastal A-class set of data and saw the same pattern, albeit it much deep (down 80% week of March 22nd and “up to” down 40-50% the week of April 12th). 
The key takeaway is that we do not appear to be in a “Stage 1” ……