Micro-unit apartments pack a wallop: a kitchen, bathroom, closets, and other typical features fused into a unit of about 200 to 400 square feet.  What keeps tenants from losing their minds: usually high ceilings and large windows, to create an illusion of space. What saves most tenants from a terminal case of claustrophobia: common rooms, where tenants — especially younger ones who are really taking to this lifestyle — can relax and interact with other residents. Other pluses are usually location, location, location, and reasonable rents. Micro units are smaller …

For an industry that was once notorious for being slow to change, technology is seeping into every nook and cranny of real estate. Artificial intelligence, bitcoin cryptocurrency, and Millennials as homebuyers have given the business a culture shock. Real estate professionals are scrambling — at different degrees — to adjust to the changes. Over 70 percent of homebuyers now start their home shopping online, and more than half of house tours are booked through a website. Although artificial intelligence (AI) can sound intimidating to some, it’s actually making agents’ jobs …

The biggest proponent of change in HVAC in 2018: Technology (lucky guess?). This covers not just engineering, but marketing, business operations, and data. Notice that a lot of what is trending in this industry can also be applied to the real estate industry. Jobber Academy reached out to HVAC business owners, industry experts, and marketing and finance pros to see what’s trending this year. Here are the findings: The highest paid technicians will have both people skills and tech skills Professionals possessing both these skills could be earning the low-to-mid-six …

It’s been a year since Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria did their damage, but the repercussions are still being felt. Typically, between June and November (the official hurricane season), storms wreak havoc on the Atlantic-area geography, some being more damaging than others. Even the most sophisticated technology cannot predict the unpredictability these storms usually bring — they can change course, increase force, or even just peter out despite the most confident forecasts. The 2017 forecast was particularly tragic. In all of record-keeping history, three of the five most costly Atlantic …

What retail apocalypse? The pop-up store trend, in which stores are here today and gone tomorrow (on purpose), is proving to be a powerful way to study customers, work out new business models, appeal to Millennials and build a brand. Pop-ups can be described as anything from a kiosk or booth in a mall or marketplace to a store within a store. They are generally perceived as a temporary lease in a vacant space. Pop-ups require less investment, and can get business instantly connected to foot traffic. They also make …

CNBC reports that mall owners are increasingly turning to unconventional tenants to fill some of the estimated 200 million square feet of retail space that is closed or that is expected to close. It’s becoming increasingly understood that the fall of malls can be attributed to two major factors: the rise of online shopping and the overbuilding of malls by developers. Forrester Research expects online shopping to account for 17 percent of all retail sales by 2022. A generational change — where Millennials are not as interested in shopping malls …

A recent Coldwell Banker survey found that 72 percent of Millennials (those born between 1981 and 1997) would be willing to pay $1,500 more for a home that was “smart.” In fact, 42 percent of those surveyed would be willing to pay as much as $3,000 more. Smart devices include network-connected security and monitoring devices, sensors, system controllers, lighting, power, and appliances. Forbes reports that 36 percent of home sales are now made to Millennials, who are now starting families. This is in contrast to the popular perception that Millennials …

After the McMansion era, perhaps it’s an idea whose time has come. The tiny house movement (also known as the “small house movement”) has been adapted by advocates of living a simpler life in smaller homes. The concept behind the idea: more financial freedom, greener living, lower utility bills, and shared community experiences. It’s a sharp shift away to the postwar American consumer idea of “bigger is better.” Tiny homes come in all kinds of shapes, types and even sizes. They can be rented or owned, on wheels or set …

If there were any doubts that technology would affect and transform the real estate business, those doubts would be vanished in 2018. A knowledge of recent history reveals the writing on the wall. According to Forbes: Modern technology has a knack for consolidating and collapsing industries without a single leader: Uber for the saturated transportation industry, Priceline for the saturated travel industry, Amazon for the saturated retail industry, plus many others. Legacy real estate brands in both residential and commercial brokerages traditionally have a hard time recruiting top tech talent …

2018 could be a record year for store closings, according to a study released by the CoStar group and cited by CNBC. The report, which was released in April 2018, found that at least 94 million square feet of retail space will be closed this year. That’s competing with the disheartening news from 2017, which saw a record 105 million square feet close. The recent liquidation of Toys “R” Us and the Bon Ton Stores led the way, with other stores set to close soon. Another high-profile closing store is …