Inside Irem: Amo Spotlight

Article excerpt

COMPANY HEADQUARTERS LOCATION Scottsdale, Ariz.

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES 250

DATE THE COMPANY BECAME AN AMO FIRM November 1, 1990

COMPANY WEB SITE www.pbbell.com

Debbie D. Willis, CPM*, is the president and designated broker of property services for the P.B. Bell Companies, AMO*. She is responsible for the operation of the company's property management division, and oversees all new business and development activities.

Willis has been in the property management field since 1979 and with PB. Bell since 1983. She currently serves on the Arizona Multihousing Association Board of Directors. JPM talked to Willis about her company and what the AMO accreditation means.

WHY HAS MULTIFAMILY HOUSING IN ARIZONA BEEN SUCH A STRONG DRAW FOR YOUR COMPANY?

The P.B. Bell Companies do not manage or own any assets outside of Arizona. We consider ourselves the "local experts" and believe in order to manage an asset effectively, you have to be present. Knowing the market intimately and being on site regularly to support staff is paramount. Our founder, Philip Bell, started in the business in 1975 by purchasing a small multifamily asset and continued to grow the business by purchasing and building, and providing management services to others. Since that time we have developed over 2,500 apartment units in 15 communities in the greater Phoenix area and manage over 7,000 multifamily units and 8 commercial sites for third-party clients. We offer a full range of services, including multifamily and commercial property management, development services and construction services.

HOW HAS THE INDUSTRY CHANGED IN ARIZONA SINCE YOU STARTED WITH THE COMPANY?

As a company, probably the most significant change has been reduced margins- both for the property management company and the communities. …