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A letter from IREM President Chip Watts, CPM, CCIM

A look inside this issue of JPM

By Chip Watts, CPM, CCIM
People Social Distancing And Wearing Facemasks In A Business Meeting At The Office

IREM President Chip Watts, CPM, CCIM

After weathering the storms of 2020, as the 2021 IREM President, I’m turning the page over to a new year and a fresh, clean start. The historic challenges we faced? Those are left behind, and we’re all back to our own version of the “business-as-usual” state of affairs we’d been pining for throughout the previous year.

Oh, but if only that were the way of things.

As leaders in real estate management and in our communities, we excel by meeting challenges head on, armed with a clear understanding of the situation and a game plan for how to navigate our way (and our owners’ ways) to the best possible outcome. And this much is clear: As tired as we all may find ourselves (researchers have dubbed this “crisis fatigue”), the challenges of 2020 remain the order of the day as we start the new year. This issue of JPM offers a look at owners’ outlooks and the conversations that are top of mind as we take a moment to plan for the year ahead.

Striving to meet our owners’ goals and objectives is what defines our work every day as property managers; in that way, this year is no different than any other. You can get a close-up look into one property investor’s current view of the market in the owners’ goals feature. One step we can all take in finding our way through the upcoming year’s challenges will be making our spaces as safe as possible for those who use them. Check out the technology column on HVAC for an overview of some of your best options for ventilation and airflow systems as part of your approach to building and occupant wellness.

One of the enduring values that IREM offers to our members—where we excel—is in our commitment to institutional learning. The many years that IREM has been serving the real estate management profession have seen a long, unbroken chain of lessons earned from lessons learned. Go beyond industry standards and look to best practices as we all continue to grow as real estate professionals. Read more here.

Where one sees a challenge, another spots an opportunity; IREM members are opportunity seekers. What better example of that than completely reimagining the future potential of an underperforming property? In the feature on adaptive reuse, you can read about what distinguishes it as a unique form of property redevelopment and how that translates into a need for specialized management experience.

An exciting addition to JPM that I’m proud to see make its first appearance is our new column on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I). Take the opportunity to get a better idea of what DE&I really means and why it’s important in this debut installment.

As we were finalizing this issue of JPM, we received the sad news of the passing of former IREM President Lloyd D. Hanford Jr. Lloyd was a true pillar of IREM, and you can read about his life and impact in a tribute to his legacy. We also remember our other IREM members who passed during 2020 in our annual tribute.

Throughout this new year, we’ll continue to support you, our members, in the ways you want to be supported. We all stepped up to face real challenges in 2020, and I look forward to making sure we continue to do so in 2021.

W.A. “Chip” Watts IV, CPM, CCIM
IREM President

the Journal of Property Management staff

Chip Watts, CPM, CCIM, is 2021 IREM president as well as president and executive CPM for Watts Realty Co., Inc., AMO, in Birmingham, Alabama.

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