Apartment Firms Staff Up to Meet New Rental Demand, Survey Says


NMHC Compensation Survey finds property management, leasing and maintenance in high demand

WASHINGTON, D.C. – August 17, 2012 – (RealEstateRama) — Reflecting the growing demand for apartment homes, nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of multifamily firms grew their staff last year and 62 percent increased their merit bonus pool, according to the National Multi Housing Council’s (NMHC) 2012 Apartment Compensation Survey. The annual survey, based upon the data of over 50,000 employees at 93 major apartment firms, provides detailed analysis of industry hiring practices – including salary, variable pay and total compensation of nearly 100 industry positions.

Firms that added staff increased their total number of employees by an average of 11 percent, with maintenance, leasing and property management positions being in the highest demand. These same positions were also most likely to receive a salary increase, typically 3 percent. Overall, 81 percent of firms reported an increase in their total compensation budgets.

The uptick in hiring comes on the heels of a strengthening multifamily market. Over three quarters (77 percent) of firms rated their financial performance better in 2011 than 2010, and 78 percent expect 2012 to improve further. The optimism also feeds into projected 2013 budgets, as 69 percent expect their merit budgets to grow next year.

Additional survey findings:

  • The staff turnover rate was a steady 30 percent in 2011 and 31 percent over the three year period of 2009-2011.
  • In addition to salary, bonus and health benefits, 53 percent of apartment firms offered a wellness program, nearly half (49 percent) of firms allowed telecommuting and 23 percent provided a flexible hours program.
  • More than 60 percent of firms offered education assistance to various staff, and more than 74 percent offered housing discounts to on-site property management or maintenance staff.

NMHC’s 2012 Apartment Compensation Survey was conducted from April to June 2012 by FPL Associates L.P., providers of specialized compensation and management consulting solutions to the real estate industry. The survey includes detailed compensation data for 94 apartment industry positions, ranging from top executives to leasing consultants. Additional highlights include:

  • Multiple new positions, like Head of Marketing, VP of Application Development and IT Manager.
  • Expanded sections on short- and long-term incentive programs.
  • Statistics on employee turnover, paid time off, telecommuting and other staffing/compensation strategies.
  • Enhanced information on salary increases for this year and projected budgets for next year.

The survey is available for purchase at $2,800 ($1,800 for NMHC members). For more information or to purchase the survey, visit http://www.nmhc.org/goto/60898.

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Based in Washington, DC, NMHC is a national association representing the interests of the larger and most prominent apartment firms in the U.S. NMHC’s members are the principal officers of firms engaged in all aspects of the apartment industry, including owners, developers, managers and financiers. One-third of Americans rent their housing, and over 14 percent live in a rental apartment. For more information, contact NMHC at 202/974-2300, e-mail the Council at ">, or visit NMHC’s web site at www.nmhc.org.

Jim Lapides, 202/974-2360,

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