A D.C. Apartment Community Can Be A Great Investment: 4 Areas to Watch

Table of Contents

These four neighborhoods in the D.C. area have great property acquisition potential

Key Takeaways:

  • Investors looking to invest in apartment communities see Washington, D.C., as a profitable opportunity
  • Washington, D.C., is perpetually attractive to new residents who prefer renting
  • Four promising areas are Trinidad, Adams Morgan, Woodridge, and Brookland
  • Rent in Washington, D.C., is consistently higher than in many places in the country

Investing in properties is typically a secure way to generate a new source of income and save money for retirement. Renters are always looking for their dream home in Washington, D.C., and the market is hot for anyone looking to invest in an apartment community. It doesn’t matter if you’re a seasoned investor or someone new to the game; this article tells you everything you need to know about the current D.C. market and the best areas to consider investing.

What Is an Apartment Community?

An apartment community is a multifamily building with many apartment homes in it. These properties can be a great opportunity for investment because they can bring in many rental payments each month from tenants. It’s also worth noting that because the Washington, D.C., area is popular with renters, apartment communities are a fairly reliable investment for those looking to buy and manage property. 

Why D.C. is Desirable

Washington, D.C., reliably makes numerous best places to live lists every year. Some of the reasons include its impressive performing arts scene, nationally ranked public schools, and plentiful world-class attractions. 

Home values vary widely across the city, averaging anywhere from $250,000 to over $1 million. The price to buy an apartment community can be higher, but there’s often a good chance of a high return on your investment as you collect regular rent payments in these sought-after buildings. There are also tons of high-paying tech jobs in the area, which is one reason D.C. has one of the country’s highest average rents. This can be a great thing for investors because you’re likely to quickly find tenants and start turning a profit as soon as you are collecting rent.

Four Top Apartment Communities in D.C.

There are numerous factors to consider when looking for a place to invest in. You want to know that it’s a popular area, full of life, and still growing. These and other factors that make neighborhoods desirable to potential residents are cues that an area could be a good location to acquire property in. Washington, D.C., is just such a place almost anywhere in the region you look, but here are four parts of town that are ripe for investors looking to acquire an apartment community. 

1. Trinidad

This Ward 5 area of Trinidad is primarily residential. It is on an upward trajectory, but home prices remain affordable, making now a good time to consider investing in an apartment community. Young adults have taken an interest in Trinidad in recent years, causing an increase in diverse, working-class residents, many of whom are looking to rent rather than buy. 

Trinidad is just a few blocks from the excitement but is not known for its bustling nightlife, which is just how the residents like it. That combination could be a recipe for success for property managers looking for a reliable neighborhood to buy in. 

It’s also worth noting that renters reign in Trinidad. There are far more of them, approximately 56%, than homeowners. The average rent for a one-bedroom is around $2,500, according to Zumper, meaning you’ll likely have no issue finding quality tenants. Most homes here are Victorian-style row houses, condos, and bungalows, making this area highly desirable.

2. Adams Morgan

Adams Morgan’s claim to fame is its unusual state of being a quiet neighborhood with a vivid nightlife. The neighborhood is a stunning area of Washington, D.C., consisting mainly of historic apartment communities and row houses. It’s an easily walkable neighborhood, too, putting it in high demand, which can make investing in property here a smart choice.

More than half of residents in Adams Morgan are renters. The typical rent here is about $2,500, which puts it at the top of the list for many investors looking to secure decent rental payments each month. 

3. Woodridge

Woodridge is located in the northeast corner of D.C., and the neighborhood emanates a cozy suburban feel. Residents love its quiet atmosphere butted up to Brookland, the territory’s most vibrant art scene, so they never have far to go to get in on the action. There is plenty to do right in Woodridge, too, as many bars, restaurants, parks, and amenities fill the central shopping areas.

Most homes in this neighborhood were constructed during the 20th century, so you’ll find many bungalows and craftsman homes populating the streets. Rent prices average around $1,700, according to Zumper data. With these more modest rent prices than some neighborhoods, the neighborhood is in high demand, so property owners are likely to have their pick of great tenants. 

4. Brookland

Brookland, nicknamed “Little Rome,” is known for its fabulous churches and monasteries, so its influx of renters might be seen as a bit surprising. The popularity of the neighborhood, however, could be due to its plethora of funky gift shops and eclectic art galleries. 

Another selling point of this Ward 5 neighborhood is its many recreational green spaces, so investing in an apartment community in this area could bring you outdoorsy and affluent tenants.

Every investor wants the best value for their money, and in Washington, D.C., apartment communities are a no-brainer. The four neighborhoods mentioned here are highly sought-after by renters and investors alike. Consider these areas for your next property acquisition if you’re looking to start or expand your real estate portfolio.

Start Your Search for the Perfect D.C. Rental Acquisition

Hunting down ideal rental properties in D.C. is no easy task. Managing property can be even more challenging, especially if you lack professional experience, but we’re here to help. Nomadic Real Estate offers property management services in the Greater Washington, D.C., area. Our team will maintain relationships with tenants, screen applicants, handle maintenance requests, and ensure you comply with local laws. Contact Nomadic Real Estate for more information about your Greater D.C. property management needs.

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Enhanced Reporting

Your portal includes a selection of extremely useful reports. Reports are available in the “Reports” section, and are distinct from the financial statements. Unlike financial statements which are static records, Reports are dynamic real-time records that will update with current data every time you view them. 

Scroll down to learn more about Reports:

Navigate to the "Reports" module in your portal:

Owner Portal Reports
  • Keep in mind, these reports are dynamic records. They will refresh to display current information every time you view them. 

Enhanced Rent Roll Report:

Enhanced Rent Roll Report
  • The Enhanced Rent Roll Report will show the rent amount, last payment date, move-in date, lease expiration date, and security deposit amount for each of your tenants. 
  • It will also show a portfolio summary with occupancy percentage, vacancy loss, and more!

Unit Comparison Report:

Unit Comparison Report
  • If you own multiple units (or buildings) with Nomadic, you’ll get access to the Unit Comparison Report. 
  • This report enables you to quickly compare financial performance between your units at a glance without toggling between individual reports. 

Income Statement Month-Over-Month:

Income Statement by Month Report
  • The Income Statement Detail – Monthly Report serves as a month-over-month record of portfolio performance. You’ll see itemized income and expense categories and can track monthly. This report will update with fresh data every time you view it. 

Financial Statements

Financial statements will be published to your portal on a monthly basis. The statements are found in your Documents library, and provide a historical record of all financial performance. The statements serve as a snapshot of financial performance over a given period, and are static documents (unlike Reports, the statements do not update/change in real-time). 

Scroll down for more info about the Financial Statements in your Documents library:

The Documents area contains monthly financial statements:

Owner Portal Documents
  • The statements in the Documents are are static documents. They are posted to the portal once a month to serve as a historical record of financial performance. 

Download a statement to see month and YTD financials:

Owner Portal Property Statement

You'll also find a month-over-month operating statement:

Month over Month Statement

Portal Communication Tool

You can use your owner portal to communicate with our team. Any messages you send through the portal will go straight to your Account Manager. When we reply, you’ll get an email notification and you’ll also see the message in your portal next time you log in. 

Here’s an overview of using the communication platform:

Click "Communications" and navigate to "Conversations":

Commincation Dashboard Screenshot
  • The communications module will contain a record of all messages that you create through the portal. 

Click the "New Message" button and send your message:

Owner Portal New Message Screenshot

Responses will show up in the conversation ticket:

Portal Conversation Response Screenshot
  • You’ll get an email notification whenever you get a response, and you’ll also see the message in your portal next time you log in. 

You can reply in-line using the comment box:

Owner Portal Comment

Each conversation will be logged in its entirety:

Portal Conversation Snapshot

Understanding the Ledger

Your portal includes a ledger with all transactions. The ledger is populated with data in real-time as transactions flow through our accounting software. Much of this information is also available in the Reports area, as well as the Statements in your Documents library, but the ledger is the most comprehensive resource for diving into the details. 

Please scroll through the sections below to get a better understanding of how to interpret the ledger. 

By default, transactions are sorted chronologically:

Owner Ledger Dates
  • The date reflected in the lefthand column is the actual transaction date, not the “bill date”. This is the date the transaction was actually processed. 

If you have multiple properties with Nomadic, you'll see the address for each transaction in the "Location" column:

Ledger Property Column
  • You can filter the ledger to look at just one property, all properties, or specific sets of properties. 
  • If you only have one property with us, you’ll just see the ledger for that property. 

The Description column displays the transaction type:

Owner Ledger Description Column
  • BILL: this is an expense transaction, such as for repair costs or management fees.
  • CHARGE: this is a transaction  billed to the tenant, most typically a rent payment. 
  • NACHA EXPORT: this is a credit we processed to your distribution account. This type of transaction is how you get paid! 

The Amount column shows the dollar value of each transaction:

Owner Ledger Amount Column
  • Positive Amounts: if an amount is positive, it reflects a transaction that is payable to you. Typically, this will be a rent payment that we collected from your tenants. On occasion, a positive number could also signify a journal entry or credit adjustment. 
  • Negative Amounts:  if an amount is negative, this is a transaction that is either payable to Nomadic or is an amount that has already been paid to you. Typically this will be for repair costs or management/leasing fees. Owner draws (net distributions into your checking/savings account) also reflect as negative amounts, since they have already been paid to you. 

The Account Balance column shows a sum of positive/negative transactions at a given point in time:

Owner Ledger Account Balance Column
  • Account Balance should always equal zero after a net distribution has been processed. When the balance is zero, this means that all expenses have been paid and you’ve received the remainder as net operating income, leaving a balance of zero (meaning: no one is due any money, as all funds have been distributed appropriately). 

Navigating the Propertyware Owner Portal

Your portal includes some extremely useful features that help you understand your property’s financial performance at a new level, with real-time transparency into every transaction.

Scroll through the snapshots below for an overview of portal navigation! If you need more help or have specific questions about using the portal, you can reach out to your Account Manager any time for a screen share. 

You can filter all info by date range or property:

PW Portal Filters

View a snapshot of income and expenses on your dashboard:

PW Owner Dashboard View

See every transaction in real-time on your ledger:

Owner Portal Ledger View

Statements and forms will be posted to your documents library:

Owner Portal Document Library

View a suite of real-time financial reports:

Portal Reports View

See a running list of all bills, and drill down for more detail:

Owner Portal Bills View

Under Bill Details, you'll find dates/descriptions/amounts and more:

Portal Bill Details

You can also communicate with your Account Manager through the portal:

Owner Portal Communication Tools

How do net distributions work?

Net distributions keep your accounting clean and simple. Each month we’ll collect rent from the tenants, deduct any repair expenses for the previous month and any management/leasing fees for the current month, and credit the remaining net operating income to your account. 

Net Distribution

You’ll receive a statement via email each time a net distribution is processed, and can view all transaction details in your Propertyware owner portal.