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Paul Bergeron’s 10 Most Memorable Articles from units Magazine

magazine articles
December 2019

1. Airbnb: Here to Stay (Dec. 2015)

Earlier that year at an apartment industry conference, I asked several apartment operations and technology veterans if they thought Airbnb would be a big deal for our industry. They said, “What’s Airbnb?” Read More 

2. Hurricane Katrina (Oct. 2005)

Our industry really is at its best during awful situations, such as the flooding in New Orleans. This event unfolding on TV over Labor Day was heartbreaking. However, apartment professionals throughout the country banded together to bring relief and comfort to so many.

3. Boom or Bust (May 2012)

This article ran in tandem with “Where There’s a Williston, There’s a Way.” It was a look at the insane boom town that was Williston, N.D.—and all because of energy exploration that took over that remote part of the country. It’s an economic cycle that has played out many times in Texas, as several veteran NAA members pointed out to me.

4. Stop It (Jan. 2018)

Taking a trending news item that dominates national headlines and applying it to our industry is one of the best things about units Magazine coverage. The #MeToo movement is one such example. Those horrifying accounts, particularly in the entertainment and political world, brought into public view how destructive inappropriate workplace behavior can be. This article explored the topic. Read More 

5. Managing the Y Factor (March 2007) 

I had just hired a few Gen Y staffers for the magazine when I wrote this. They were excellent! But boy, what a mind-blowing task sometimes to truly maximize their tremendous skills and adjust to their attitudes. But guess what: A dozen years later, and we see that they pretty much had it right all along. 

6. “Clearing the Air: Smoke-Free Housing” (Dec. 2007) 

Rare are examples for which freedom could or should be taken away, but in this case, smoking is proving to be one of them. With enough nudges from government regulations and the spirit of supply and demand, the result has been a healthy one. Read More 

7. “Issues Behind the Icon” (Oct. 2007)

On the other hand, well-intentioned but confusing, inconsistent and even unintelligible government regulations about accessibility design (that blue box wheelchair icon) can throw a costly policy wrench in businesses, such as housing, that all the while are seeking to comply. Damn lawyers.

8. “Talking Trash” (Feb. 2019) 

I’m a devout recycler. But figuring out what the tiny numbers inside the small triangles on product packaging meant was confounding. I visited a regional recycling facility run by Waste Management. It wasn’t a waste. The effect trash pick-up has on apartment communities and their bottom lines was eye-opening. Read More 

9. “Do You Still Like Facebook” (March 2012)

Admittedly, I was not a fan of social media back in 2012. While clearly not just a short-term fad, reporting on what many apartment marketers had to say back then was fascinating. And wow, so much of what they said came true. Read More 

10. “Artificial Intelligence, Get Real” (April 2017)

Weren’t we all amazed by Alexa in 2016? (And not just as a cool holiday gift.) Slowly but surely, voice-enabled function, the use of virtual assistants and artificial intelligence, is taking over our lives as much as we’re willing to allow it. Read More