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Among the properties that Greystar manages locally is Elan Midtown in downtown Charleston.

For the eighth straight year, Greystar Real Estate Partners LLC is the nation's largest apartment developer, according to a yearly findings from the National Multifamily Housing Council.

The Charleston-based company also placed first among multifamily managers It also moved up to 16th largest from 19th in property ownership and finished sixth among top builders.

"Greystar's success is truly a team effort, and we are very thankful for our team members' ongoing commitment to providing superior service to our residents, clients, partners and the community," says Bob Faith, Greystar's founder and chief executive. "We are also very honored and grateful for the continued recognition from the NMHC and look forward to another banner year."

The council this spring unveiled its 29th annual survey, the 2018 NMHC 50. It compiles the study with real estate research and consulting firm Kingsley Associates. The guide is considered an "authoritative ranking of the nation's 50 largest apartment owners and managers," according to Greystar.

Managers and owners are ranked based on their portfolio holdings — either owned or managed— as of Jan. 1. Developers and general contractors are organized based on the number of units started in 2017.

Greystar has offices throughout the United States, Europe, Latin America and Asia-Pacific. The company has a presence in more than 130 markets worldwide and is the largest apartment operator in the U.S. managing more than 420,000 apartment home units values at around $80 billion. The company also manages capital on behalf of a global network of institutional investors, topping $23 billion in assets under management. Close to 40 percent of that total are developments that are completed or underway.

"The apartment sector continued its strong economic run last year," the National Multifamily Housing Council says in releasing its report.

Among the top multifamily real estate companies are Memphis, Tennessee-based MAA, the country’s largest apartment owner at 99,792 apartment homes.

Greystar was the largest apartment manager, with 418,475 apartments under management and also remained the top apartment developer with 5,651 apartments started in 2017.

Elsewhere, Florida-based Summit Contracting Group, Inc. is nation’s top third-party apartment builder, starting 6,053 units in 2017. Alden Torch Financial, headquartered in Denver, held onto its ranking as the country’s largest apartment tax credit syndicator with 162,123 apartments syndicated, or pooled among a group of investors.

“Strong underlying demand and investment performance metrics continue to buoy the market,” says Mark Obrinsky, the chief economist and senior vice president of research NMHC’s Senior Vice President of Research and Chief Economist. “While there may have been some signs of deceleration and market leaders have shifted strategies, the industry’s fundamentals remain robust.”

Highlights in the NMHCs report include:

  • The apartment occupancy rate in 2017 was 95.1 percent, according to RealPage; "slightly below the unusually high levels of the last few years, but well above the post-1999 average of 94.4 percent," the council says.
  • There were 346,900 apartments completed in 2017, according to the Census Bureau. That's the highest figure in 29 years.
  • Total multifamily transaction volume last year was $152.7 billion, based on Real Capital Analytics findings. The volume provided "the best year since 2000 by a wide margin, the council says.

NMHC partners with Kingsley Associates, a real estate research and consulting firm, to conduct the research and analysis for the NMHC 50. All apartment owners, managers, developers, builders and syndicators are invited to answer a survey questionnaire about their prior year’s activities. Apartment owners, managers and syndicators are ranked based on their portfolio holdings (either owned, managed or syndicated) as of Jan. 1, 2018, while developers and builders are ranked based on the number of apartment units started in 2017.

Based in Washington, D.C., the National Multifamily Housing Council is the chief trade group for the trillion-dollar apartment industry. The organization brings together prominent apartment owners, managers and developers who providing apartment homes for 39 million Americans.

Visit www.nmhc.org/The-NMHC-50.