JERSEY CITY, NJ—Locally-based Mack-Cali Realty Corp. reports that despite Coronavirus restrictions imposed by the State of New Jersey on April 8, the REIT has collected approximately 96% of its multifamily property rents and 90% of office rents from tenants as of April 20.
As of April 20, the company’s multifamily portfolio has a current percentage leased rate of 95%. The remainder of outstanding rent collections of approximately 4% is largely from tenants who are seeking a payment plan, the company states.
The Executive Order, issued on April 8, requires the ceasing of physical operations of all non-essential construction, and for essential operating businesses to adopt aggressive social distancing and disinfection measures to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Mack-Cali states that it is not known at this time whether the governor’s executive order will be extended and what, if any, impact it may have on future rent collections, and past performance.
The company notes that its April 2020 rent collections to date are not indicative of future results.
In terms of its office portfolio, the company notes that office rents are generally due on April 15th before late charges apply. The balance of the office collections is mostly comprised of payments in process or by tenants that pay rents outside of the regular collections cycle (e.g. GSA) or consist of additions to base rent (e.g. CAM and other charges) and sundry charges (e.g. extra cooling, parking, etc.), billed during the course of the month. Tenants that represent only 6% of billings, including some that have paid April rent, have asked for some form of rent relief and the company states it is working with these tenants to create a payment plan.
“We are living in an unprecedented time and our organization has made appropriate adjustments to help our residents, tenants and community navigate the COVID-19 pandemic,” Mack-Cali CEO Michael DeMarco stated. “Operationally we have implemented the recommended protocols to facilitate the health and safety of our tenants, residents and employees.”
He added, “We have taken the necessary precautions across all of our properties to ensure we can provide essential services to our tenants and residents in a safe and timely manner. We also have tried to provide help wherever we can for those who are dealing with this crisis and will continue to do so in the upcoming months.”
In terms of New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy’s COVID-19 Executive Order’s impact on its development activity, there are currently five projects under construction in its Roseland subsidiary’s portfolio totaling 1,942 units. The Emery at Overlook Ridge, a 326-unit apartment based in Massachusetts, has delivered 140 units, of which 46% are leased. The remaining 186 units are expected to be completed over the next six months.
The balance of 1,616 units are comprised of four properties in New Jersey, which include, The Charlotte in Jersey City (750 units), Building 9 at Port Imperial (313 units), Riverwalk C at Port Imperial (360 units) and Short Hills Residential (193 units). In accordance with the Executive Order, construction activity across all sites has been largely curtailed, except The Charlotte, which is exempt from the order. Mack-Cali construction projects greatly benefitted from a mild winter and are generally ahead of our construction schedules. Mack-Cali states that it expects that if the delays are not too lengthy it will not materially affect the company’s original delivery schedules.
The company’s Residence Inn at Port Imperial remains open with average occupancy to date for April at 65%. The Residence Inn has donated 25% of their rooms, not included in the occupancy percentage, for regional front-line healthcare workers. The company also provided meals to those workers each day. Mack-Cali’s remaining two hotels, the Envue, which is wholly owned, and the Hyatt, which is owned through a 50/50 joint venture with Hyatt, have been closed for the month of April.