Category Archives: Uncategorized

Greenlight a Vet

At Pillar Properties we are extremely passionate about showing our gratitude to the men and women who have served our country in the armed forces.

To honor our veterans today we are part of Greenlight A Vet, a campaign to establish visible national support for our veterans by changing one light to green. Our teams changed the lights in the available homes at each of our properties to shine green as a symbol of appreciation and support.

Veteran's Day

The Meaning of Green:

“Green is the color of hope, renewal and well-being. ‘Greenlight’ is also a term commonly used to activate forward movement. The simple action of changing one light to green is intended to spark a national conversation regarding the recognition of veterans, and ‘greenlight’ them forward as valued members of our communities.”

We are so happy to be able to show our support for our nation’s veterans and we thank all service men and women for their sacrifices today and every day.

green light a vet

Reinventing the Seattle Waterfront

“This is a chance for us to be a great city.”

Big changes are coming to Seattle’s Waterfront. Recently Bisnow hosted Waterfront & Beyond, an event to discuss the breakdown of reworking the iconic Seattle Waterfront. We were honored that our very own Senior Vice President Billy Pettit was asked to be on the panel. Billy has been on multiple expert panels for Bisnow and was thrilled to share his insight at Waterfront & Beyond.

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Pillar Properties Senior Vice President Billy Pettit


The City of Seattle has launched a multi-year program, “Waterfront Seattle” to ultimately build the new waterfront. According to City of Seattle Office of the Waterfront:

“The Program covers the waterfront from Pioneer Square to Belltown and includes a rebuilt Elliot Bay Seawall, new parks and paths, access to the water, places to enjoy views, vibrant public and cultural spaces, and a new urban street that will accommodate all modes of travel and provide an important connection in the city’s transportation system.”

While the new Waterfront projects bring obstacles, they also bring opportunities for development and investment.

“Downtown has not always been a great place for families to live. The waterfront development changes that,” Pettit said. Waterfront living in downtown Seattle is an added amenity to the residential experience.

Pettit spoke of Pillar Properties’ deeply vested interest in downtown and the livability of downtown. Specifically, he discussed the Stadium Place project and how it created a front door to the Stadium District. Pillar Properties believed and still believes in the long term vision of Pioneer Square. Billy tied this point in with the waterfront’s challenge of timing. Revitalizing a neighborhood takes time. Big projects that are worth doing, that change cities, take time.

Pettit also said true challenges come from the unknown. We must move past failed projects and maintain momentum with the mindset of pioneers.

More information on the topics discussed at Waterfront & Beyond can be found in the Puget Sound Business Journal.

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Standing room only at Bisnow’s Waterfront and Beyond

Washington’s Best Workplaces

We are pretty darn excited to be named to the 2015 Puget Sound Business Journal’s list of Best Workplaces. This is a huge honor and recognition for our young company. The award is based on the survey responses from our team members related to job satisfaction, relationships with bosses, camaraderie with fellow employees and opportunity for advancement.


We are one of just 20 companies in our size range (50– 99 employees) who made the list in the state of Washington.  We will join the other companies on the list at a celebration rally at Safeco Field on August 13 and we are looking forward to celebrating with our entire team.  At the rally the Business Journal will announce the top three ranked companies in our category and our fingers are crossed but even making the list is a big accomplishment.

“To even make this prestigious list is truly humbling. I know that what makes Pillar Properties a great place to work is each of our team members and the commitment they make to being quietly awesome everyday. I could not be more proud of our team and our company,” said Billy Pettit, senior vice president, Pillar Properties.

You can read the announcement from the Puget Sound Business Journal here.


Maintenance Mania: Putting Skills to Test

Have you ever wondered how our maintenance team can make repairs so quickly? These guys are serious rock stars, taking care of our building and most importantly, your apartment, whenever we need them.  And when a toilet is leaking or an air conditioner isn’t working, we really need them! One of the ways our guys hone their skills is at Maintenance Mania. It sounds like a rock concert for maintenance teams but the program offered by the National Apartment Association (NAA), is actually an exciting and fun way for our maintenance teams to put their skills to test.

Maintenance Mania ALL

From left to right: Mark Lanouette, Mike Virdell, Paul Hanson, Clay Williams, Bill Holbrook, Richard Hughes and Tyler Patton at Maintenance Mania April, 2015.

Our team recently attended the Maintenance Mania event sponsored by the Washington Multifamily Housing Association (WMFHA). Maintenance Mania is first and foremost a competition of maintenance activities. Our maintenance supervisors, along with maintenance professionals from all over the Puget Sound, participated individually in eight different games focused on challenging their maintenance skills. Each game involves a common maintenance activity—seems easy, right? Except they are judged not only on their execution and completion, but they have to finish the task as fast as possible.  That’s a lot of pressure!

The competitions included a car race where our team members had to build their own race cars with only maintenance supplies prior to the event. The goal was to be as inventive as possible to create the fastest and most ingenious car possible, check out our team member’s cars below.kujf;khvOther competitions included water heater installation, control deadbolt test, flush toilet conversion and faucet installation. Each one is designed to test the competitor’s ability to execute these tasks, and the speed at which each is completed. Now you know how our maintenance team can work so quickly to fix your toilet, faucet or your air conditioner!

Along with learning new skills and honing some old ones, our team had lots of fun participating in this event. They love any excuse to get together, hang out and do what they are so passionate about. They tell us that they learned a lot, they were able to share each other’s tactics, and while it was an individual competition, they helped each other with tips and tricks—because for our guys, it’s always about team work!

Earning the Opportunity – Senior VP Billy Pettit at AIM 2015


Senior Vice President Billy Pettit (second from left) at AM 2015

The successful lease up at our Stadium Place property in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood was a hot topic at the recent AIM 2015 (Apartment Internet Marketing) conference in Huntington Beach, California.  Apartment owners and managers from across the country attended the conference and our Senior Vice President Billy Pettit was a featured speaker.

DSC_0251Pettit discussed the challenges and opportunities in opening a property with almost 500 apartment units in an area that had not been considered desirable as a residential location.  The property sits next to Century Link Field, home of the Seattle Seahawks and Sounders, and offers stunning views of Puget Sound and downtown.

Pettit discussed the content marketing strategy for Stadium Place that focused on partnering with the neighborhood and becoming a source of information about restaurant, retails and events available in the area.  The campaign built excitement around the growth in the area and helped to establish Stadium Place as a viable residential community.


In addition, Pettit said they were able to be part of the excitement surrounding the Super Bowl run for the Seahawks.  During construction, they hung a big pick up truck that was decked out for the Hawks from the top of the construction crane.  It was visible from the stadium and fans loved it.

12Capitalizing on that success, Pettit told the crowd how he worked with the architects to construct a giant 12 on Stadium Place to show support for the team.  It was seen throughout the area and it quickly became the most photographed building in the city.  The giant 12 showed Stadium Place’s commitment to the fans and generated excitement as prospective residents were drawn to living in the property.

Pettit also discussed the relationship he forged with a local TV station that resulted in live broadcasts from the property on game days throughout the season once the property was opened.  This publicity generated interest in the property and contributed to the quick lease up of the two apartment towers the comprise Stadium Place.


Ultimately Pettit said that the relationships they formed and the continued commitment to the neighborhood have been critical to the success of the property.  He also admits that it never hurts to get a little lucky and that opening the property the same year that the Seahawks went to the Super Bowl provided an excellent opportunity.


Our take on the Institute of Real Estate Management Summit in D.C.

Earlier this month, Diana Norbury, vice president of multifamily operations, attended the IREM Leadership Legislative Summit in Washington, D.C. The summit served as a platform for real estate management professionals from all around the globe to network, discuss important industry issues and weigh in on how to maximize IREM membership benefits.

“I believe we can improve IREM’s membership by making IREM more accessible to entry-level professionals in the industry, by promoting certificates or designations that aren’t just for manager level positions or organizations,” Norbury said.

In addition to being an IREM member and CPM candidate, Norbury also sits on the National and Local Chapter for Education and Product Knowledge Committees, as she has always been passionate about real estate education. Therefore, she takes any opportunity to raise awareness and to enhance the quality of training and designations of real estate professionals.

Photo by IREM.

Photo by IREM.

Norbury hopes this will encourage real estate management as a profession. During the summit, she had the opportunity to meet with her local chapter’s executive to discuss ideas on how to enrich the current program offerings to include entry-level professionals. Norbury believes this would help those who are new to the industry grow through the ranks, creating a more qualified group of professionals and adding value to their organizations. This approach would also increase member count as the young professionals would acquire and maintain an IREM membership throughout their careers.

On the national level discussion, Norbury shared that they evaluated the new IREM online course product offerings and what needed to be done to sell more courses and ensure the right audience is targeted. Norbury believes encouraging younger membership would not only increase IREM’s member numbers and increase the usage of online courses, but would also ensure an innovative and fresh approach is embraced and practiced by IREM.

Congressman Steve Stivers.  Photo by IREM.

Congressman Steve Stivers. Photo by IREM.

Keynote speaker, Congressman Steve Stivers, spoke about what’s in store for the Industry’s Legislative Agenda, and shared 2015 advocacy issues. He also prepared them to go up The Hill to advocate, on behalf of each respective region, on legislation that impacts our industry.

The five-day summit was filled with passionate industry professionals who were looking to network, share knowledge and learn from one another. Diana Norbury had a rich experience and was able to share some of her ideas, while learning industry tips and practices, and learned what’s in store for the real estate industry.

Team Pillar Supports Seattle MS Walk

We joined the cause this past Sunday: Seattle Multiple Sclerosis Walk 2015—our very first companywide Pillar Passions team member event, and it was a huge success!

Clayton and Danielle

Clayton and Danielle

At Pillar Properties we present each year an E.P.I.C. award to a team member who exemplifies our company values: Excellence, Passion, Innovation and Commitment. Each year, the winner will be asked to choose an organization worthy of our team’s support. Our 2014 winner Clayton Williams wanted to support the MS Walk and it was an honor for all of us to walk with Clayton and his wife Danielle to support this worthy cause that is very close to their hearts.

We were so excited to have everyone come together to donate, support and participate in the MS Walk.  It was terrific to see such a big turnout and to have a sunny Sunday morning to hang out and intermingle with other team members. Plus, we all looked great in our Team Pillar shirts!

From left to right: Billy, Mike and Dave.

From left to right: Billy, Mike and Dave.

Together our team raised $2,560 for the thousands of families in the MS Chapter who are affected by this, and we couldn’t be more proud of our team’s commitment to this great cause. The money we raised through the MS Walk helps to allow 15,000 people living with MS in the northwest to receive local programs and services, of which 11 projects are right here in Washington. We consider it to be very localicious and Quietly Awesome for us to be part of such a great Pillar Passions event and we were thrilled to see the large number of team members who were able to take the time to be part of our walking team.


Team members and family before the walk.


Go Team Pillar!

Pillar’s Five Safety Features for our Properties.

At Pillar Properties, we are committed to providing you state of the art security at each property. But, what does that really mean?  Basically, it’s not just one system or one practice, it is a collaborative work of systems, team members and practices that ensure our properties maintain a positive environment.

Here are our five key safety features for our properties:

  1. Courtesy Patrol: Noise complaint?  No problem! Courtesy Patrol is available at night when our management team leaves for the day. Call them if you encounter any incidents, disturbances or noise complaints and they will check it out right away. They are also at the property for holidays or big events such as Seahawks games, New Year’s Eve and Fourth of July. Courtesy Patrol is well-informed about each neighborhood and they are briefed on the property needs, so they can patrol and ensure everything is in order.
  2. Saflok Key System: We don’t want you to worry about anything at home, that’s why we invest in a Saflok key and lock system, which allows us to provide controlled access to the property.  That means a magnetic key fob is needed in order to gain access not only to the front door and your apartment, but also to the elevator and common areas. This helps minimize the risk of non-residents gaining access. Each key is tailored for individual use, so a resident would have different access for example than a dog walker or cleaning person that is hired by a resident.  This system also allows for fast and easy lost and stolen key deactivation and replacement. It’s as simple as stopping by the office to let us know and we will deactivate previous key and create a new one in no time.
  3. Gated Parking and Remotes: We often see our cars an extension of ourselves, therefore we are always looking to keep it safe. We provide gated parking with a garage remote to provide controlled access for your car. So you can have a peace of mind at home, knowing your car is resting peacefully.
  4. Maintenance Emergency 24-hour Contact: We know emergencies happen, especially when we least expect it, which is why we have maintenance available 24 hours a day. From a water leak to a heater malfunction, help is just a phone call away.
  5. Security Cameras: If an incident happens and no one is around, does it make a sound? We care about what happens at our properties, even when no one is around to see it, which is why our properties are equipped with security cameras in all common areas. The footage is reviewed periodically or when an incident is reported to ensure that everyone is maintaining safety standards.

Pillar Properties Named Tops in the Nation for Resident Satisfaction!


National Award-Company-2014 (2)

Our teams are constantly focused on customer service at Pillar Properties.  Its the cornerstone of our mission – to provide what we call a ‘quietly awesome’ experience for our residents.  That means our teams work diligently behind the scenes to make sure the experience inside our properties matches residents lifestyles, needs and expectations.  Being quietly awesome is a focus for everything we do and it is the guiding light of our customer service team.

That’s why we are especially proud to receive the SatisFacts 2014 National Resident Satisfaction Award for 2014.  SatisFacts is a national company that works with more than a million apartment dwellers annually to gauge their experiences.  We are thrilled that of the nearly 300 property management companies across the country, Pillar Properties is ranked in the top three!*

“Seeing Pillar Properties recognized with this award is exceptional but I can humbly say I am not surprised,” said Billy Pettit, senior vice president for Pillar Properties.  “This all comes back to the teams at each of our properties – The Lyric, The Wave and The Nolo at Stadium Place, The Century, The Corydon and The 101.  They are deeply committed to making our properties a special place to live and they are clearly succeeding.”

SatisFacts surveys all residents annually and again anytime a resident moves in, has a maintenance request or moves out. Based on those surveys, Pillar Properties also received an Exceptional Company Award (score of 4.5 or higher of 5.0) for resident satisfaction.  You can see the awards and rankings here.

“This awards shows us that our teams are responding to our resident’s needs and that’s what truly matters to us. We focus every day on ensuring that our property teams are quick to address any issues that arise for our residents.  That’s what makes Pillar Properties different from other property owners and that’s what being quietly awesome is all about,” said Pettit.

SatisFacts is the apartment industry retention and reputation management authority, working with hundreds of management companies and more than a million apartment units nationally.  You can learn more about the company here.



* Of companies with less than 2,000 apartment units



Getting Ready for the Super Bowl

We’re assuming all you’ve been thinking about this week is the Seahawks playing in the Super Bowl on Sunday—that’s all we can think about, too!

Let us indulge in this Hawks fever together with every other living person in the city!

Let’s talk party! Whether you are hosting your own party, going to a friend’s party or going out to celebrate with all other 12s, we have the best food, drinks and places to guarantee you’ll enjoy the Super Bowl!



Impress your friends by making one of these for your Super Bowl party, or bring it to your friend’s party—they’re crowd pleasers!



Don’t forget the Seahawks-themed snacks!

Source: Queen Bee Coupons

Source: Queen Bee Coupons

Oh, and be sure to make a Russells Sprouts Cheese Dip—get it?

Source: Queen Bee Coupons

Source: Queen Bee Coupons

What better way to support the Hawks than with Seattle-made drinks!


For those of you going out— at each one of our properties, our teams recommended these hopping bars in our different neighborhoods!

Stadium Place:

The Century:

The Lyric:

The 101:

The Corydon:

Or just stay home to watch it on the big screen in our media rooms!


And remember, ANYTHING is possible. GO HAWKS!