LIVEbe’s The Remy Honored for Best Lease-Up Pace

LIVEbe’s The Remy Honored for Best Lease-Up Pace

The Remy, a 278-unit midrise apartment community in Lanham, Md., has earned a Delta Associates Excellence Award in the category of Best Lease-Up Pace for a Suburban Maryland Apartment Community.

The Remy, which began leasing in 2017 in the emerging Harkins District of Prince George’s County, was able to reach lease-up in one year and has averaged 23 move-ins in its first 12 months. Delta Associates used a 10-month metric and recognized an average of 19 move-ins en route to stabilization. LIVEbe was presented with the award on Oct. 17 at the Delta Associates’ 22nd Annual Apartment and Condominium Industry Awards for Excellence, a private cocktail event on the rooftop of the 880 P apartments in Washington, D.C.

“This achievement is a reflection of our magnificent team of LIVEbe Ambassadors, whose exceptional service levels attracted new members at a lightning-fast pace,” said Jayme Martin, community director of LIVEbe. “While the rapid lease-up of the community gives us tremendous pride, the mission isn’t over after members move in. We aim to exceed their expectations throughout their stay, and The Remy’s Ambassadors have done a stellar job of that.”

LIVEbe has created a unique culture, part of which includes referring to its team members as Ambassadors and residents as members. The company’s focus on resident service recently resulted in numerous 2017 SatisFacts Resident Satisfaction awards, which included one for The Remy. The community received a nearly perfect average survey score of 4.93.

“The Remy will draw plenty of traffic on its own with its unique aesthetic appeal and vast suite of amenities,” said Katie Thomas, director of LIVEbe Leasing Ambassadors. “But it’s certainly not the only luxury apartment community in the area, and our Ambassadors made a pronounced difference in leasing up the community so quickly. We are both excited and humbled to receive this recognition a year after opening our doors.”

Situated at 7730 Harkins Road, The Remy features immediate access to the New Carrollton Station, which provides access to Baltimore, Washington, D.C., New York and Pennsylvania via Amtrak and Metrorail. Shortly after opening, The Remy ambassadors and members collected donations and engaged in an area cleanup effort to help brings a sense of community to the Harkins District.

The Remy consists of studio, one- and two-bedroom apartment homes and features a rooftop lounge, hydrotherapeutic saltwater pool, outdoor grills, relaxing courtyards, dog run, pet spa, state-of-the-art fitness center with yoga studio, game room, movie-screening room, gamers gallery and telecommuting spaces. Apartment interiors include stainless-steel appliances, quartz countertops, in-unit washers and dryers, double-pane windows, hardwood flooring, walk-in closets and designer lighting and hardware.

A design of Phase II is underway with construction to follow. The second phase will add more than 200 additional apartment homes, and retail space within the buildings.

The Delta Associates’ Multifamily Practice Group annually issues awards to recognize outstanding multifamily accomplishments in the Washington, D.C./Baltimore area.

LIVEbe Seeking Ambitious “Unicorn Wranglers” in Recruiting Campaign

LIVEbe Seeking Ambitious “Unicorn Wranglers” in Recruiting Campaign

ROCKVILLE, MD. (PRWEB) MAY 03, 2018

LIVEbe annouces a unique recruiting campaign designed to attract motivated individuals with creative problem-solving skills who are passionate about creating connected communities.

Known for implementing methods that veer from conventional practices in the apartment industry, LIVEbe is targeting ambitious individuals unafraid to go beyond predictable solutions. The company’s employees, known as LIVEbe ambassadors, will have the freedom to think creatively and not be bound by the commandments of a stringent employee manual.

“We’re always seeking ways to transform conventional management practices in an industry that can be very stagnant,” said Elaine De Lude, vice president of LIVEbe. “With this recruiting campaign, we’re veering from the cubicle mentality and sending the message that there is room for growth by thinking outside the box. We want driven individuals who can uncover creative ways to effectively handle difficult situations.

As part of the campaign, LIVEbe is incorporating creative language into its employee-seeking materials. Rather than advertise for positions such as leasing team associate, the company is seeking unicorn wranglers, all-knowing oracles and cloud-shape creators. The colorful language is accompanied by job descriptions that question whether the potential employer can create and maintain a magical environment, accomplish the amazing by sheer strength of will and make even the most persnickety beasts happy.

The goal is to attract those who are eager for more than just a desk job for a run-of-the-mill company. Retaining residents can be a deterministic factor in an ultra-competitive apartment market, and the ability of an onsite ambassador to create solutions and resolve resident concerns can help prevent turnover.

“We’ve always subscribed to the philosophy that if we take care of our Ambassadors, they will take care of our residents,” said Shannon Taylor, director of human resources for LIVEbe. “When you empower your associates and provide them with the freedom to be innovative, solutions are developed much more rapidly and resident satisfaction quickly follows.”

LIVEbe’s focus on LIVEbe Ambassadors and resident service recently resulted in a 2017 SatisFacts National Company Award for Resident Satisfaction. The three communities overseen by the company all earned individual Resident Satisfaction awards, as well, for registering an average score of above 4.0 on at least 25 surveys.

The growing LIVEbe portfolio now consists of four Maryland-based communities, including 2Hopkins (Baltimore), The Remy (Harkins District), Glen Oaks (Greenbelt) and The Bowen (Bowie). LIVEbe took over management responsibilities of The Bowen last month.

“Although our residents have been satisfied, we believe this is only the beginning,” said Jennifer Rucker, vice president of operations for LIVEbe. “By hiring individuals who truly want to grow within the company and envision themselves as part of the brand, we can build customer service levels that transcend anything currently available in the industry.”

Check out our list of dream careers to see if you're a fit!

LIVEbe Communities Tapped To Manage The Bowen

LIVEbe Communities Tapped To Manage The Bowen

from Multifamily Press (March 1, 2018)

LIVEbe Communities has taken over management responsibilities of The Bowen, a luxury apartment community located less than a mile from Bowie Town Center. 

Situated approximately midway between Baltimore and Washington, D.C. and about 20 miles west of Annapolis, The Bowen is commuter-friendly and boasts an alluring package of amenities. Berman Enterprises, LIVEbe's parent company, purchased the LEED Silver-certified community in 2014, and previously used a third-party management company. 

"We cannot wait to add our LIVEbe Ambassadors - our passionate, service-driven team members - to The Bowen and place our signature imprint on the community," said Elaine De Lude, vice president of LIVEbe. "We're excited to do here what we've done with our other properties by instilling a unique, resident-friendly culture that emphasizes authentic community. By taking care of our Ambassadors, they in turn will provide an unmatched living experience for our residents."

Located at 14909 Health Center Drive, the community features near-direct access to the vast shopping and dining opportunities of Bowie Town Center. The center boasts shopping opportunities ranging from Macy's to Best Buy and an abundance of local and national cuisine opportunities, in addition to a Starbucks. 

The Bowen's proximity to US Route 50 offers connectivity to Washington D.C. to the southwest and Annapolis to the east, while nearby Interstate 495 is the gateway to Baltimore. While those cities provide an abundance of employment opportunities, many others exist within the burgeoning town of Bowie. Previously regarded as nothing more than a railroad stop, the city has morphed into the largest municipality in Prince George's County and third-largest city in Maryland. 

The Bowen, a gated community with electronic-access covered parking, consists of one-, two- and three-bedroom homes with various floor plans. Community amenities include a clubroom with lounge-style seating and grand fireplace; resort-style pool with lounge seating and a sundeck with grilling stations; game room with foosball, refreshment bar and multiple flat-screen televisions; movie theater with surround sound, plush seating and fresh popcorn and business center/cyber café with complimentary coffee bar. Residents also have access to a 24-hour fitness center with yoga studio, grand library, bike racks and storage and onsite concierge services. 

Apartment interiors feature bamboo wide-plank flooring, chef-inspired kitchens with dark-granite countertops, energy-efficient stainless steel appliances, gas fireplaces, vaulted ceilings, large walk-in closets, spa-inspired bathrooms with deep soaking tubs, in-home washers and dryers and expansive patios or balconies. 

"We're eager to start creating cultural atmospheres that will foster genuine social connection," said Jennifer Rucker, vice president of operations for LIVEbe. "The Bowen is already blessed with a prime location and extremely comfortable and upscale apartment homes, and we want it to transcend the physical attributes with service that redefines apartment living."

PRESS RELEASE: LIVEbe Communities Receive Resident Satisfaction Awards

PRESS RELEASE: LIVEbe Communities Receive Resident Satisfaction Awards

ROCKVILLE, MD. (PRWEB) FEBRUARY 27, 2018

LIVEbe, a premier apartment developer and operator dedicated to delivering distinct apartment homes within connected communities, today announced that all three LIVEbe-managed apartment communities have received individual 2017 SatisFacts Resident Satisfaction Awards.

LIVEbe also earned a National Company Award for Resident Satisfaction, as the multifamily division of Berman Enterprises received an average score of 4.34 based on a minimum of 100 surveys. Companies and individual communities must receive an average score of at least 4.0 to win a Resident Satisfaction award, with each community required to have a minimum of 25 surveys.

2Hopkins (4.49 average score), The Remy (4.93) and Glen Oaks (4.27) won individual community awards.

"We believe that if we take care of our residents and associates better than any other company, the financial performance will follow," said Elaine De Lude, vice president of LIVEbe. "We're grateful to be recognized with these Resident Satisfaction Awards, as these honors directly reflect the living experience we're aiming to cultivate and the values we've instilled in our maintenance teams, leasing teams, management teams and everyone involved."

2Hopkins is a luxury high-rise in Downtown Baltimore, featuring 183 apartment homes and a prime amenities package. The LIVEbe development, which opened in 2017, was the first apartment in the U.S. to implement refrigerated lockers from Smiota, Inc., which allow residents to utilize food delivery services while offsite and have round-the-clock access to their shipments.

The Remy, also developed by LIVEbe, is positioned in the budding Harkins District of Prince George's County in Lanham, Md. The 278-unit midrise community, which opened in 2017, is initiating area cleanup efforts and other activities designed to stimulate a sense of community. A second phase of the mixed-use community, which will add more than 200 additional apartment homes, is currently in development.

Glen Oaks was acquired in 2014 and features some of the most spacious and luxurious floor plans in Greenbelt, Md. Situated alongside fitness and nature trails, the 463-unit community is also transit-friendly with prime access to the Capital Beltway.

"Part of being a trusted apartment operator is hiring those with the right attitude, those whose perspective aligns with your core values," said Jennifer Rucker, vice president of operations for LIVEbe. "Take care of your associates first, and they'll take care of your residents. Our associates want to know what they're doing right, where they can improve and the things they can do to create an extremely positive living experience."

About LIVEbe
Headquartered in Rockville, Md., LIVEbe was founded in 2016 and is helmed by multifamily veterans Elaine De Lude and Jennifer Rucker. LIVEbe is the multifamily division of Berman Enterprises and was established with a specific focus on fostering a sense of community by offering an unparalleled living experience for residents and employing LIVEbe Ambassadors who are forward thinking and passionate about providing exceptional customer service.

About Berman Enterprises
Berman Enterprises is a multi-generational real estate and investment company founded on the principles of honesty, integrity, hard work, hands-on management, community and philanthropy. Employing a conservative financial strategy, Berman Enterprises has experienced sustained growth since brothers Melvin J. Berman and I. Wolford Berman founded the company in 1952.

Today, the Company and its affiliates own and manage more than 9 million square feet of commercial office, retail, industrial/flex and residential properties in Maryland, Virginia, Illinois, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. The Company also owns several hundred acres of developable land representing thousands of units of residential and hundreds of thousands of square feet of commercial and retail development potential.

The Remy Recognized For Advertising Excellence By Property Management Association

The Remy Recognized For Advertising Excellence By Property Management Association

Article courtesy of the February 2018 edition of the Property Management Association Bulletin 

PMA’s 2017 Marketing and Advertising Excellence Awards judges were blown away by the “sexy” and “out of the box” entries from The Remy Apartments managed by LIVEbe Communities. At times the marketing resembled that of a resort or an upscale restaurant not an apartment community. In their evaluations, the judges noted, the marketing was 100 percent lifestyle and benefits.

“The creativity and excitement I felt while looking through their collateral, compelled me to schedule a visit to see this community,” shares Amy Mays. “I wanted to see if the experience actually met the expectation set forth by their marketing efforts. It not only measured up to those expectations…The Remy exceeded them!”

Sure enough, many of the community’s common areas do exude the vibe of a high-end restaurant, with lush private booths aplenty. Many residents and couples actually retreat to these booths in the evening to enjoy a quiet dinner after a long day at work. “Between the cabanas located on the pool deck, creatively lit outdoor areas around the pool, grilling stations, the rooftop oasis, gaming stations with intentional graffiti walls, the funky artwork, the impeccably kept grounds and hallways, the resort atmosphere and lifestyle hit me like a ton of bricks,” Amy enthuses.

Amy admits that she was sold on the community without even setting foot inside an apartment. “I was sold on the lifestyle, team enthusiasm and professionalism,” Amy shares. “But of course I had to check out the model apartments, and again I was impressed!” Not overly decorated or cluttered, the models were tastefully done using color and strategic furniture placement, to create a warm and spacious impression of even the studio apartment. Also worth noting, each decorative item in the model apartments was purchased locally, and the team provides prospects with a list of where the items were purchased, so if they see something they love, they too can have it.

Marketing Takeaway
Always make sure that the in-person impression of your community meets the expectations set forth in your advertising. Let your community’s personality shine through.

The Remy won with their sass, creativity and style!

Download PDF of article

2Hopkins Amenities Unique Among Predictable Multifamily Mold

2Hopkins Amenities Unique Among Predictable Multifamily Mold

Even at the most luxurious apartment communities, amenities can be something of a bonus. Developers generally first compose a blueprint that allows for the maximum amount of residents before deciding where to add the perks. 

LIVEbe flipped the script on the development playbook with 2Hopkins, a recently opened high-rise apartment community in Downtown Baltimore that has a decidedly amenity-first vibe. From its refrigerated package lockers designed to store perishable goods, dog park and spa that features separate small- and large-dog play areas to its stunning 21st-floor social space and fitness center, the community stands out even as developers begin to get more competitive in the amenities race.  

"We're always aiming to tweak the multifamily mold, and the amenity package and 2Hopkins is a prime example of that," said Elaine De Lude, vice president of LIVEbe. "So often, new communities bury their amenities and they can feel like an afterthought to residents. We believe not only our amenities, but also where they are situated, completely caters to the resident experience - even if it meant we had to build fewer apartment homes than we could have."

An optimum example of that is the 21st floor, which would have made an ideal setting for additional homes at the 183-unit community. Instead, the floor consists of large social space with kitchen and banquet area, two secluded seating areas with views of the city, an aesthetically designed lounge with gathering tables and a health and fitness center with free weights, cardio machines and spin/yoga room. 

Situated at 2 Hopkins Place, the community aspires to create a cutting-edge quintessential downtown Baltimore experience viewed through floor-to-ceiling windows. It is the first residential community on the East Coast to implement refrigerated lockers, which serve as a premier service amenity that allows residents to safely store food deliveries. Developed by Smiota, the lockers provide round-the-clock access for residents through a smartphone app. 

A pet spa complements the dog park, and residents can schedule pet grooming services, a community host/concierge and garage parking. Residents also have access to the services of venerable community host/concierge Patrick Lowe, well known in local circles as one who far surpasses expectations. 

The community's additional features include EV charging stations, a bike storage and repair station and garage parking. The spacious lobby features a grand entrance, soaring ceilings, vast seating areas, curated artwork, real-time transit screen and professional working area. 

2Hopkins consists of studio, 1- and 2-bedroom homes. Apartment interiors include chef-caliber kitchens with quartz countertops, white glass-accent cabinetry, pendant lighting, stainless-steel appliances and French door refrigerators. Apartment homes also include washers and vent-less dryers, baths with ceramic tiling, custom showers with white subway tile, walk-in closets, designer lighting package including backlit vanity mirrors, wood-style flooring and an energy-efficient design. 

Penthouses on the 19th through 21st floors offer enhanced features such as motorized window blinds, expansive city views and designer touches in the corridors. 

LIVEbe Apartment Community, The Remy, Serves as Catalyst of New Harkins District

LIVEbe Apartment Community, The Remy, Serves as Catalyst of New Harkins District

The neighborhood now known as the Harkins District has historically been an overlooked, nameless community despite its endearing character and diverse culture that embodies the spirit of Prince George’s County.

As new developments put the neighborhood on the map, even giving it a new name, developers like LIVEbe are making a commitment to improve the once neglected landscape while preserving its rich character. LIVEbe’s new apartment community, The Remy, is firmly focused on doing its part to transform the Harkins District into a vibrant neighborhood. The Remy team collected donations and engaged in a vigorous area-cleanup effort as part of the initial steps to cultivate a sense of community.

“We are committed to bringing together the people of the Harkins District to create a charismatic, connected neighborhood that strengthens the rich diversity of the area,” said Elaine De Lude, vice president of LIVEbe. “Ultimately, The Remy will be a small part of a dynamic neighborhood. But we believe a community-focused new apartment development with an abundance of retailers will provide a solid start for a the Harkins District.”

An affiliate of Berman Enterprises, LIVEbe not only wants to create a sense of community in the Harkins District, but inspire others to do so as well. In addition to initiating cleanup efforts, LIVEbe also constructed The Remy with several green features to help reduce the community’s carbon footprint. Included are electric-vehicle charging stations and several smart-home technology features designed to save energy.

“We love what LIVEbe and The Remy are doing in the Harkins District of Prince George’s County, and we’re excited to see the neighborhood come together to shine a light on the character that makes it great place to live, work and play,” Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III said. “We appreciate that The Remy genuinely takes pride in the area, and it’s our hope that the unifying presence they’ve established will inspire not just this neighborhood, but others throughout the county.”

Phase I of The Remy features 278 apartment homes and is in lease-up mode. The design of Phase II has begun, with construction to follow, and will add more than 200 additional homes. The buildings are targeting to combine 70,000 square feet of retail space.

Situated at 7730 Harkins Road, The Remy is located within steps of the New Carrollton Station, which provides expedient access to Baltimore, Washington, D.C., New York and Pennsylvania via Amtrak and Metrorail. Residents of the transit-oriented development will also have access to some of the area’s high-end employers, including the Internal Revenue Service, University of Maryland and NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.

The Remy consists of studio, one- and two-bedroom homes and features a rooftop lounge. Additional community amenities include an outdoor hydrotherapeutic saltwater pool, outdoor grills, bocce court, landscaped courtyards, pet park, pet spa, state-of-the-art fitness center with yoga studio, game room, movie-screening room, gamers gallery and telecommuting spaces. Residents also have access to concierge service and self-serve package lockers.

Apartment interiors include stainless steel appliances, quartz countertops, in-unit washers and dryers, extra sound insulation, double-pane windows, hardwood flooring, walk-in closets and designer lighting. Select units include moveable kitchen islands and balconies.

The Remy is Berman Enterprises’ third development in the immediate area. The company also constructed a four-story office building that is home to the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) and 2U.

About LIVEbe
Headquartered in Rockville, Md., LIVEbe was founded in 2016 and is helmed by multifamily veterans Elaine De Lude and Jennifer Rucker. LIVEbe is the multi-family division of Berman Enterprises and was established with a specific focus on fostering a sense of community by offering an unparalleled living experience for residents and employing LIVEAmbassadors who are forward thinking and passionate about providing exceptional customer service.

About Berman Enterprises
Berman Enterprises is a multi-generational real estate and investment company founded on the principles of honesty, integrity, hard work, hands-on management, community and philanthropy. Employing a conservative financial strategy, Berman Enterprises has experienced sustained growth since brothers Melvin J. Berman and I. Wolford Berman founded the company in 1952.

Today, the Company and its affiliates own and manage more than 9 million square feet of commercial office, retail, industrial/flex and residential properties in Maryland, Virginia, Illinois, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. The Company also owns several hundred acres of developable land representing thousands of units of residential and hundreds of thousands of square feet of commercial and retail development potential.

2Hopkins First Apartment Community to Add Refrigerated Lockers

2Hopkins First Apartment Community to Add Refrigerated Lockers

Baltimore-based Community Teams With Silicon Valley-based Smiota to Add Cutting-Edge Amenity

BALTIMORE – Aug. 22, 2017 – LIVEbe, a premier apartment developer and operator dedicated to delivering distinct apartment homes within connected communities, has announced the addition of refrigerated lockers to its 2Hopkins apartment community in Downtown Baltimore.

The luxury high-rise, featuring 183 apartment homes, is the first apartment community in the U.S. to implement the Smiota PoD refrigerated lockers. Produced by Smiota, Inc., the lockers serve as a premier service amenity, allowing residents to utilize food delivery services and have round-the-clock access to their shipments via smartphone.

“There has been an uptick in demand for food-delivery services, and we’ve closely observed the trends of companies such as Blue Apron, HelloFresh and Instacart,” said Elaine De Lude, vice president of LIVEbe. “2Hopkins is using an innovative solution to conquer a real challenge, and we believe this is a state-of-the-art amenity that will provide a true benefit to our residents.”

Eight refrigerated and 62 dry package lockers from Smiota, all controlled by Smiota’s Locker Operating System and an intuitive unified interface, were installed at 2Hopkins in early August. The refrigerated lockers are designed to accept fresh produce without insulated packaging, offer chill to frozen temperatures and customizable colors that can match the interior design of any community.

With 2Hopkins situated in the heart of downtown, residents do not have seamless access to nearby grocery stores and many choose a vehicle-free lifestyle. The refrigerated lockers eliminate many of these challenges. Another common obstacle with food-delivery services is wavering product and courier availability, which makes it difficult to produce accurate delivery time windows. With refrigerated lockers, residents don’t have to be home for delivery drivers to secure and safely store food that needs to be refrigerated.

“There is a much bigger time window for delivery since the resident can order online and the couriers can deliver fresh produce, milk and eggs directly into refrigerated Smiota PoD,” said Waheed Rasheed, cofounder and chief marketing officer for Smiota. “Residents get the convenience of not waiting at home for the delivery and couriers save time by aggregating all orders and delivering once. The lockers also provide an ecofriendly method of storage, as Styrofoam and dry-ice packaging aren’t needed to keep the goods fresh, thus reducing waste.”

With ecommerce projected to surge 125 percent in the next 5 years and surpass $4 trillion in annual revenue by 2020, on-demand food delivery will play a big role in the ever-growing trend. By 2020, more than 50 billion packages will be delivered annually, and apartment communities will account for a hefty portion of that total.

The National Multifamily Housing Council recently revealed that package management solutions are the No. 1 sought-after amenity beyond location.

“We’re super excited because this really fits the level of service we’re aiming to provide our residents,” said Jennifer Rucker, vice president of operations for LIVEbe. “It also breaks the mold of multifamily developments where many insist things can only be done a certain way.”

2Hopkins already is among the most amenity-rich communities in the area. The community features stunning views of the city from the floor-to-ceiling windows, 21st-floor resident lounge and fitness center, yoga studio, state-of-the-art bike storage and repair area, pet spa with large and small dog areas, a community host/concierge, garage parking and resident-curated events. The penthouse level features remote controlled blinds and special corridor designer finishes.

About LIVEbe

Headquartered in Rockville, Md., LIVEbe was founded in 2016 and is helmed by multifamily veterans Elaine De Lude and Jennifer Rucker. LIVEbe is the multi-family division of Berman Enterprises and was established with a specific focus on fostering a sense of community by offering an unparalleled living experience for residents and employing LIVEAmbassadors who are forward thinking and passionate about providing exceptional customer service.  

About Berman Enterprises

Berman Enterprises is a multi-generational real estate and investment company founded on the principles of honesty, integrity, hard work, hands-on management, community and philanthropy. Employing a conservative financial strategy, Berman Enterprises has experienced sustained growth since brothers Melvin J. Berman and I. Wolford Berman founded the company in 1952.

Today, the Company and its affiliates own and manage more than 9 million square feet of commercial office, retail, industrial/flex and residential properties in Maryland, Virginia, Illinois, North Carolina and Pennsylvania.  The Company also owns several hundred acres of developable land representing thousands of units of residential and hundreds of thousands of square feet of commercial and retail development potential.

About Smiota

Located in Pleasanton, California, Smiota Inc. provides a cloud based platform, locker operating system, applications and services that facilitate secure exchange of physical goods across all industries and walks of life. Smiota platform provides complete chain of custody, security, convenience, real-time analytics, and reporting.  These features and more are available as secure APIs (Application Program Interface) for partners and third-party developers to use with their own custom solutions. PODs for refrigerated and dry packages, Mailroom automation app, package room automation, recipient presence apps and many other applications are already running Smiota operating system on Smiota platform. Visit www.smiota.com for details or contact Waheed Rasheed at wrasheed@smiota.com.

Media contact

Elaine De Lude
240-621-3200
edelude@LIVEbe.com

LIVEbe Makes Commitment to Downtown Baltimore

LIVEbe Makes Commitment to Downtown Baltimore

2Hopkins Community Donates to Baltimore’s Rebuild Together, Hosts Photo Contest

BALTIMORE – July 21, 2017 – LIVEbe, a new, premier apartment developer and operator dedicated to delivering distinct apartment homes within connected communities, made a financial contribution to the Baltimore Chapter of Rebuild Together on Thursday as part of its Beauty in Baltimore contest.

LIVEbe, which recently joined Downtown Baltimore with the development of 2Hopkins, a 183-unit, high-rise apartment community centrally located in downtown, honored contest winner Bill King at a recognition event Thursday at 2 Hopkins Plaza. King won the Instagram contest that featured more than 600 entries.

Contest participants submitted photos from within the city to Instagram with the hashtag #BeautyInBmore. The winner received a monetary prize and LIVEbe matched the amount with a donation to the Baltimore chapter of Rebuild Together. 

“We’re all in for Baltimore, and judging by the photo contests, the city’s residents are as well,” said Elaine De Lude, vice president of LIVEbe. “They not only seem to feel the vibe of the city, but also strive to become a part of it and take immense pride in the rebuilding effort. At 2Hopkins, we are committed to being an important part of that pulse and a good neighbor that truly encourages a sense of community.”

The recognition event included free drinks, live music from Janine Wilson and featured 100 posters of the best photos from the contest. LIVEbe announced contest winners and runners-up between songs and set breaks, and a background slideshow continually rotated through the multitude of submitted images.

2Hopkins is located in an area amidst a complete revitalization. Extremely resident-friendly and aiming to offer a quintessential downtown Baltimore experience, 2Hopkins is one of the most cutting-edge communities in the area. It is the first residential property on the East Coast to implement refrigerated lockers as part of a top-of-the-line amenity package. That includes stunning views of the city from the floor-to-ceiling windows, a pet spa with large and small dog areas, a community host/concierge and garage parking. The penthouse level features remote controlled blinds and special corridor designer finishes.

As part of its effort to highlight a sense of community, 2Hopkins will fund resident-curated events, such as book clubs, wine tasting and fitness groups. The community is also a growing social hub, with kickball leagues and additional communal activities sprouting up on a daily basis.

The Beauty in Baltimore contest was another step in cultivating a sense of pride for the downtown corridor. King’s winning photo depicted a bicyclist riding at night at a waterfront park with the city in the background. Runners-up were Chris Cunningham, Antoinette M. Bynum and Brian George.

“Innovative redevelopment projects like 2Hopkins really have this neighborhood going," said King, a City Center resident who is president of the City Center Residents Association. “It’s part of an effort to convert Baltimore's most iconic and historic office buildings into state-of-the-art residences, which has brought a modern flair to the old central business district. The Beauty in Baltimore contest was an awesome idea and a great opportunity to explore the beauty all around us in this city, both old and new."   

About LIVEbe

Headquartered in Rockville, Md., LIVEbe was founded in 2016 and is helmed by multifamily veterans Elaine De Lude and Jennifer Rucker. LIVEbe is the multi-family division of Berman Enterprises and was established with a specific focus on fostering a sense of community by offering an unparalleled living experience for residents and employing LIVEAmbassadors who are forward thinking and passionate about providing exceptional customer service. 

 About Berman Enterprises

Berman Enterprises is a multi-generational real estate and investment company founded on the principles of honesty, integrity, hard work, hands-on management, community and philanthropy. Employing a conservative financial strategy, Berman Enterprises has experienced sustained growth since brothers Melvin J. Berman and I. Wolford Berman founded the company in 1952.

Today, the Company and its affiliates own and manage more than 9 million square feet of commercial office, retail, industrial/flex and residential properties in Maryland, Virginia, Illinois, North Carolina and Pennsylvania.  The Company also owns several hundred acres of developable land representing thousands of units of residential and hundreds of thousands of square feet of commercial and retail development potential.

Media contact

Elaine De Lude
240-621-3200
edelude@livebe.com

'Charles Center change-up': A sneak peek of the renovated 2Hopkins Plaza

'Charles Center change-up': A sneak peek of the renovated 2Hopkins Plaza

From Baltimore Business Journal by Melody Simmons

The lobby holds modern fixtures, bronze and marble accented structures, tan concrete pillars and floor-to-ceiling windows. In the world of the ongoing downtown Baltimore metamorphosis, it's a unique and minimalist statement with a tinge of local history.

At 2Hopkins Plaza, a $50 million conversion of the former PNC Bank building into 183-luxury apartments and revamped office space for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is nearing completion with the first wave of tenants already moved in.

"It's the old meets the new," said Karl Barney, the community director of the property who will manage the 22-story building and glass pavilion outside once it fully opens in September. "It's a Charles Center change-up."

The Brutalist-style building is a landmark with a striking cubic exterior that some love and others hate. It was nearly totally vacant when the property was bought at auction for $5.1 million by Rockville-based Berman Enterprises in 2015, but soon will be a busy hub once again. The property was first listed in 2014.

2Hopkins was first built in 1969 for the Mercantile Deposit and Trust Co., which later sold to PNC Bank. The downtown landmark was conceived as a key part of Baltimore's downtown renaissance at Charles Center under the direction of former Mayor William Donald Schaefer, which regenerated the city's hub and later led to redevelopment of the inner harbor and, later, points east.

Today, the Hopkins Plaza area is getting a total re-do with a newly renovated outdoor plaza and elaborate steel fountain outside near the federal office building that is located next door.

Inside the redevelopment, the new studio, one-and two-bedroom apartments at 2Hopkins are located on floors 11-21. They have been retrofitted into former bank office space after the building was totally gutted a year and a half ago. Today, the corridors boast wide, carpeted walkways and hold a series of 8-foot front doors on each floor. Modern light fixtures and bronze-framed windows offer a glimpse of the city's skyline from the elevator bank area on each floor. Rents range from $1,224 to $2,500 per month.

All units have modern kitchens and bathrooms, wood floors and ceiling fans. There are close to 300 parking spaces in an underground garage and amenities include a rooftop gym, community room and a possible rooftop pool are in the works. Two indoor dog parks — one for large dogs, one for small dogs — will be installed in the basement next to a dog spa. A restaurant is being planned for the former bank lobby located off of the main lobby on the ground level.

The top three levels at 2 Hopkins are considered the penthouse with upgrades that include electric UVA-protected window shades and blue-tooth-capacity shower heads (to stream music into your daily splash) and views of the city that include a bird's eye into home plate at Oriole Park and the step-ladder signature of the Pandora building nearby. One couple from North Carolina pre-leased a corner penthouse two-bedroom unit from photographs, Berman said.

"We have taken the historical element, updated it and kept true to Charles Center," Barney said during a tour. "We're here to stay and we're trying to build something substantial to last over time."

On Tuesday, Barney used a large picture book "The Living City" to help show off the history of Hopkins Plaza. He said he is amazed at the modern "Jackie Kennedy" style and history of the structure that soon could be listed on the National Register of Historic Places based on an application recently filed with the U.S. Department of the Interior by new owners Berman Enterprises.

Nearby, there is a pile of rubble where the Morris A. Mechanic Theatre once stood. The structure next door was razed two years ago to make way for a new development that may proceed once a legal fight ends between developer Howard Brown and a parking garage owner.

The 2 Hopkins apartments will fully open in mid to late September when a red neon sign lights up the 21st floor identifying the project, Barney said.

By then the Corps of Army Engineers will be closer to moving 600 workers into their new digs in 143,000 square feet of space on floors 1-10 under a 15-year lease.

"We are very excited about this building," said Adam Berman, a vice president with Berman Enterprises, a Rockville developer. The company also purchased 10 Hopkins in the plaza during the October auction. Berman Enterprises used historic tax credits and high-performance market rate tax credits "to make the numbers work," he said.

"We believe in the area," Berman added, of the project, the company's first in Baltimore.

The smaller pavilion building located outside 2Hopkins at 10 Hopkins Plaza totals 24,000 square feet and Berman executives are exploring a possible grocery store for the site like Trader Joe's, Barney said.

Barney pointed out that the building's outer skin of solid concrete was poured onsite by workers and erected piecemeal with scaffolding. The project in the 1970s was hailed as a new benchmark of the downtown renaissance as the ultra-modern structure designed by local legend Charles Brickbauer along with partner Warren Peterson took hold on the skyline.

The redevelopment was designed by BCT Architects and Phyllis Hartman of HDG Interior Architects.

"When we visited it and toured it, we realized it's an up-and-coming neighborhood, just steps from the Inner Harbor, Fells Point, Federal Hill," Berman said Tuesday. "And there is parking underneath. Then we went inside and saw floor-to-ceiling windows and we started thinking about residential conversion. Looking at the other apartments on the market nearby, we can offer things that nobody else can."

Glen Oaks Apartments wins accolades

Glen Oaks Apartments wins accolades

The "ApartmentRatings Top Rated" award recognizes approximately 5% of communities listed on ApartmentRatings and acknowledges those with outstanding resident satisfaction. 

Glen Oaks received the award based off of reviews and the following criterium:

  • Community received a recommend score of 70% or higher
  • Community has at least 10 reviews in total
  • Community received 5 reviews from the award year

Physical awards were sent to the property for them to showcase their dedication to the resident experience.

Elaine De Lude featured in PMA Bulletin

Elaine De Lude featured in PMA Bulletin

Industry publication, Property Managers Association Bulletin asked LIVEbe's own Elaine De Lude:

Question of the Month: How do you keep your team members motivated to deliver the best service possible to your residents?

Elaine De Lude
Vice President, LIVEbe Communities

We hire for the best attitude. We look for individuals who are enthusiastic and passionate about what they do and who demonstrate a pattern of continuous improvement and initiative.

These LIVEbe ambassadors are typically self-motivated and respond well to recognition and praise. Remember to recognize the small achievements/milestones as well as the larger achievements/milestones. All are equally important.

At LIVEbe Communities Jennifer Rucker and I are trying to create an environment where our LIVEbe ambassadors are excited to come to work, make a difference in their workplace and create special experiences for our customers. We try to make each LIVEbe ambassador feel welcomed on their first day by creating positive first impressions and keeping up their enthusiasm from the start. Jennifer and I constantly seek out opportunities to create positive experiences for our associates. We believe that this translates into not just great service, but also a commitment to a higher level of hospitality.

Jennifer Rucker Featured in PMA Bulletin

Jennifer Rucker Featured in PMA Bulletin

Industry publication, Property Managers Association Bulletin asked LIVEbe's own Jennifer Rucker:

Question of the Month: What do you do to encourage Lease Renewals at your Community?

Jennifer Rucker
Vice President of Operations, LIVEbe Communities

Renewals reflect the quality of service an organization provides to its customers. At LIVEbe, our goal is to meet and exceed residents’ expectations by creating opportunities to surprise and delight our customers. By hiring associates who are passionate about doing the right thing ­– providing out-of-the-ordinary customer service and creating a truly connected community – we are able to reduce resident turnover and, as a result, increase the number of resident renewals.

When a resident moves in to one of our communities, they become a community member, not just a resident. We believe in empowering passionate LIVEbe Ambassadors to provide community members with an unparalleled living experience with a specific focus on fostering a strong sense of community. LIVEbe strives to create strong, connected communities that support members’ personal and professional development. We want to encourage community members to live in a way that promotes and supports interconnectivity, sense of belonging and strong, healthy relationships. This is a key factor that drives lease renewals.

Former Obama Adviser Jake Fingert Joins LIVEbe sister company Camber Creek

Former Obama Adviser Jake Fingert Joins LIVEbe sister company Camber Creek

VENTURE CAPITAL

Polina Marinova

Mar 21, 2017

After a three-year stint serving the Obama Administration, Jake Fingert is starting a new chapter: venture capital. The former White House senior policy adviser for infrastructure has joined real estate-focused venture capital firm Camber Creek as a partner.

At the White House, Fingert served on the National Economic Council and managed the Build America Investment Initiative, a government-wide plan to increase infrastructure investment through collaborations with the private sector. He also led the White House “Smart Cities” program, which aims to infuse new technology in U.S. cities.

Prior to joining the Obama team, Fingert held an executive position at the General Services Administration where he managed a 375-million-square-foot real estate portfolio and the government’s real estate acquisitions program.

Fingert says the White House taught him to “think like a skeptic but act like an entrepreneur.” In other words, he was trained “to dig deep and understand people’s motivations” before moving forward with a new initiative.

Camber Creek took note and spent 2016 recruiting Fingert to join their firm, which invests primarily in real estate tech companies. Fingert’s network and connections with government officials made him an attractive candidate.

“A lot of the action you’re able to take at the White House is by calling people up and saying, ‘Hey we’re interested in getting this done, will you help,’” Fingert says. “In venture capital, the same is true -- we tap into the network aggressively to understand people’s perspective on the market and the company.”

Although venture capital may seem like an unexpected next step for someone like Fingert, it’s not uncommon. Josh Miller, the White House's first director of product, joined Josh Kushner’s Thrive Capital as an “entrepreneur-in-residence” last month. And let’s not forget that former treasury secretary Tim Geithner joined private equity firm Warburg-Pincus back in 2013.

Obama’s administration has been particularly venture-friendly. The former president appointed famed Kleiner Perkins VC John Doerr to his economic advisory board, launched the Startup America campaign, and Obama himself hinted he might be interested in becoming a VC.

“The venture ecosystem has been such a valuable source of innovation in this country,” Fingert says. “It’s only natural that you continue to see more and more collaboration between future administrations and the venture community.”

Source: Fortune

More Multifamily Units, Affordable Housing Underway in Baltimore

More Multifamily Units, Affordable Housing Underway in Baltimore

New apartments are coming to downtown Baltimore and the Station North Arts and Entertainment District this year as the latest example of the city's growing multifamily market.

Ernst Valery said he expects the Nelson Kohl Apartments in Station North to begin leasing in November and December. His firm, SA+A Development, is building 103 apartments with a yoga studio, an art gallery and a Milk & Honey Market. Valery and his wife operate the café and market, which closed its Mount Vernon location to move to the new spot. The developer will allocate up to 20 units to artists, who will receive discounts on their rent and have their work showcased in common areas and the gallery. The regular rents will range between $1K and $1,800/month for studios and one- and two-bedroom apartments.

SA+A has also formed a joint venture with Stratford Capital Group to renovate two affordable senior housing apartment buildings in Baltimore. Located in West Baltimore's Harlem Park neighborhood, the 151-unit St. James Terrace Apartments will wrap up a $25M renovation in about a year. The building will undergo a complete overhaul, with new elevators, kitchens, plumbing and electrical systems.

"It'll be very involved because the building hasn't been renovated in 40-plus years," Valery said. The $16M renovation of the 107-unit Park Height Apartments will finish in 12 to 15 months, with new roofing, energy-efficient windows, carpeting, appliances and cabinets. Valery will discuss his multifamily projects at Bisnow's 7th Annual State of the Market panel March 30 at the Four Seasons Hotel Baltimore.

Berman Enterprises' conversion of 2 Hopkins Plaza into an apartment building is moving forward. The first units will be move-in ready in July, said Elaine Delude, vice president of the Rockville developer's new apartment management division LIVEbe. The 183 apartments will occupy floors 11 to 21 with studios, one- and two-bedroom units above 330 parking spots. Apartments will rent for between $1,300 and $2,600/month. What makes the project unique compared to other multifamily dwellings, Delude said, is the first 10 floors will hold offices for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which signed a 15-year lease. The federal government will occupy 143K SF starting in 2018.

Located in the heart of downtown, 2 Hopkins is across the street from Royal Farms Arena and two blocks from the Inner Harbor. It faces a central courtyard that will hopefully be reinvigorated with events, Delude said. The apartments' features include floor-to-ceiling windows that offer city views, quartz countertops and recessed lighting. Amenities include a hotel-style concierge service, a resident lounge, a dog run area, telecommuting spaces and a bike repair station. The property management firm also hopes to make connections among residents. For example, LIVEbe might connect a resident who wants to learn about the area's history with someone who is knowledgeable about that. "What can we do to make a connected community?" De Lude said. The division manages two other Berman properties: the 463-unit Glen Oaks Apartments in Greenbelt and the 278-unit the Remy in Lanham.

One reason Baltimore is flush with so many new multifamily developments is because developers are taking advantage of the city's residential tax credit, Ballard Spahr managing partner Jon Laria said. Baltimore is currently weighing whether to extend that credit for another 10 years. "It's essential to maintain the momentum on market-rate residential," Laria said. City leaders are also trying to make the city more friendly to alternative methods of transportation. Laria, who will also speak at Bisnow's State of the Market, is chairman of Baltimore's Bicycle Advisory Commission. The city launched a bike-share program last year and recently announced an expansion of the original plan, with a total of 465 bikes in 50 stations. The goal is to also create a network of bike lanes. "The city has been trying to play catch over the last couple of years to have an alternate mode of transportation," Laria said.

Source: Biznow

LIVEbe Set to Open Two New Maryland Communities, Start Operating Another

LIVEbe Set to Open Two New Maryland Communities, Start Operating Another

Residents to begin moving into The Remy and 2Hopkins later this year

ROCKVILLE, MD. (PRWEB) MARCH 01, 2017

LIVEbe Communities, a premier multifamily property manager of Class A communities and an affiliate of Berman Enterprises, today announced the start of pre- leasing at two new luxury communities offering a combined 461 apartment homes in Maryland.

The Remy, a 278-unit community in Lanham, Md., and 2Hopkins, a 183-unit high-rise in downtown Baltimore, have begun pre- leasing homes. Residents of both communities will begin moving in later this year. Berman Enterprises owns the two properties.

"The future of each of these communities is tremendously bright, as there is a very limited supply of  of luxury apartments in these markets and enormous pent-up demand for high-end multifamily living," said Elaine De Lude, vice president of LIVEbe Communities. "Along with that demand is an expectation to provide a level of customer service few companies can deliver. That’s why we’ve crafted a thorough recruiting strategy to assemble the most talented, experienced onsite teams in the industry, with Live Ambassadors who are passionate about exceeding our residents' high expectations. We look forward to leasing up the communities, creating high levels of resident satisfaction and renewals."

Located at 7730 Harkins Road, The Remy is a transit-oriented community within a short walk of the New Carrollton Metro Station, served by the Orange Line, Amtrak, MARC and Greyhound. The station offers quick access to downtown Washington, D.C., and Baltimore. The community also is only minutes away from major employers such as the Internal Revenue Service, 2U. the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development, NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and the University of Maryland.

The eight-story Remy offers studio, one- and two-bedroom homes. The apartment homes feature stainless-steel appliances, extra sound proofing, quartz countertops, washers and dryers, walk-in closets, double-pane windows, hardwood engineered flooring, balconies, designer lighting and hardware packages, and, in select units, moveable kitchen islands.

Community amenities at The Remy include a wide range of resort-style features, such as concierge service, outdoor saltwater pool, poolside cabanas, bike storage and repair area, resident lounge, beautifully landscaped courtyards, game room, movie screening room, and bocce court. The community also has a state-of-the-art fitness center and yoga studio, electric-vehicle charging stations, car washing and detailing area, package service, pet park, dog-washing stations, telecommuting spaces, which offer Wi-Fi enabled work areas for residents who work from home and parking garage. Among its most unique offerings are a rooftop lounge with ambient lighting and lounge areas.

Located at 2 Hopkins Plaza in Charles Center in downtown Baltimore, the 21-story 2Hopkins is within a short distance from a number of major employers, including Johns Hopkins Hospital, the University of Maryland Medical Center, Bank of America and Pandora Jewelry. The community also is close to several well-known entertainment destinations. The Inner Harbor, which includes the Port Discovery Children's Museum, the National Aquarium, the Maryland Science Center and numerous restaurants, is only minutes from the site.

Also across the street from Royal Farm Arena and nearby is Camden Yards, M&T Stadium and the historic Fells Point neighborhood, which has more than 120 bars and pubs. Nearby schools include the University of Maryland-Baltimore, the Maryland Institute College of Art and the University of Baltimore.

2Hopkins offers studio, one- and two-bedroom units. With floor to ceiling windows the apartment homes feature expansive city views, 10-foot ceilings, electronic entry, stainless-steel ceiling fans, quartz countertops, white cabinets with one glass accent cabinet, recessed lighting, and wood engineered flooring. Community amenities include hotel-style concierge service, a resident lounge and gaming area, garage parking, telecommuting spaces, dog spa, package storage, bike storage and repair station, fitness center with free weights and machines, and a yoga studio.

In addition to the start of leasing on the two communities, LIVEbe has assumed management responsibilities for Glen Oaks Apartments, a 463-unit community in Greenbelt, Md.

"This is an exciting time for LIVEbe, as we begin to build our management portfolio," said Jennifer Rucker, vice president of LIVEbe Communities. "The multifamily market in the metropolitan D.C. and Baltimore areas is strong, with an underpinning of job growth that should keep demand strong."

About LIVEbe 
Headquartered in Rockville, Md., LIVEbe was founded in 2016 and is helmed by multifamily veterans Elaine De Lude and Jennifer Rucker. LIVEbe is the multi-family division of Berman Enterprises and was established with a specific focus on fostering a sense of community by offering an unparalleled living experience for residents and employing LIVEAmbassadors who are forward thinking and passionate about providing exceptional customer service.

About Berman Enterprises
Berman Enterprises is a multi-generational real estate and investment company founded on the principles of honesty, integrity, hard work, hands-on management, community and philanthropy. Employing a conservative financial strategy, Berman Enterprises has experienced sustained growth since brothers Melvin J. Berman and I. Wolford Berman founded the company in 1952.

Today, the Company and its affiliates own and manage more than 9 million square feet of commercial office, retail, industrial/flex and residential properties in Maryland, Virginia, Illinois, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. The Company also owns several hundred acres of developable land representing thousands of units of residential and hundreds of thousands of square feet of commercial and retail development potential.