By Meghan Hall
After more than 30 years building relationships on the East Coast, property management firm Bozzuto is pursuing national expansion. This month, the firm announced its plans to build a national presence and revamp its business development strategy in a number of new markets. The Registry connected with Stephanie Williams, President of Bozzuto Management, about the firm’s expansion and its plans for growth out West. As it grows, the firm is specifically targeting markets in both California and Washington.
Bozzuto has announced that it is setting its sights on the West Coast. Why has Bozzuto chosen to expand its operations at this point in time?
Our growth over time has been strategic as it is our desire to deliver a consistent experience to our clients and customers in every market where we are given the honor to serve. COVID-19 has presented challenges to many industries, including multifamily. As we make our way through recovery, we see an opportunity to more broadly drive asset value on behalf of existing and future clients as well as to deliver sanctuary to our residents.
What experiences will Bozzuto on as it begins to navigate expansion to the West Coast?
We have sought organic, strategic growth across many markets over our 32-year history. Key to our success in new markets has been aligning with the right partners and building high-performing teams comprised of existing Bozzuto employees and local talent. Always doing the right thing, fostering a culture of kindness and leading with integrity has and will continue to serve us well.
What markets on the West Coast will you target first? Why?
We are excited to expand our partnership with existing clients whose investments include east coast and west coast gateway markets. These markets have strong fundamentals, are locations Bozzuto residents move to and from, and equally as important, offer a robust pipeline of diverse talent. Our initial pursuits include Northern and Southern California, Seattle and Denver.
As Bozzuto expands, it is also seeking to redefine its business development strategy. What are the main tenets of this strategy? Why do you believe these strategies will allow Bozzuto to be successful?
While we are seeking to expand our geographic footprint, our strategy for growth will remain consistent. It has never been a goal of ours to be the biggest company. We simply want to be the best, which comes from cultivating and retaining diverse talent, increasing asset value on behalf of our clients and delivering on our mission to create sanctuary for our residents.
What are some of the challenges that come with growing into a national brand? How does Bozzuto plan to tackle these hurdles?
Vital to our ongoing success is our ability, in every market we serve, to deliver the exact same extraordinary experience our customers have come to expect. This, of course, comes from building strong teams …What we have done and how we have done it every day for 32 years has provided us the honor of expanding our platform.
What is your perspective on the national multifamily market? Where do you see fundamentals going in 2021 and why?
While we still have many uncertainties ahead, we are cautiously optimistic as we have seen increased demand and more stable occupancy in the multifamily market starting the new year. More effective vaccine distribution strategies, colleges and university preparing to reopen in the fall and companies looking to bring their employees back to the office later this year are all critical factors in driving robust activity back into the marketplace. Like it has done in the past, we are hopeful that our industry’s resilience prevails.
2020 was a monumental year of change for many. When looking what tenants specifically look for in their homes, what trends is Bozzuto seeing emerge and why?
We have been grateful to gather regular insights from our residents over the past year regarding their evolving expectations. Prior to the pandemic, 65 percent of our residents either never or rarely worked from home. As a result of COVID-19, approximately 80 percent of residents currently work from home either most of the time or all of the time, and expect do so permanently. As such, their desire is for more flexible outdoor spaces that accommodate both work and play as well as private and semi-private indoor common spaces to serve as office-like areas during the workday. To complement these areas, our residents are seeking secure, high-speed Wi-Fi and well-equipped admin centers with printing, copying and scanning capabilities, oh and of course, beverage stations for regular and very necessary caffeine infusions!