Carefree RV Resorts Experiencing ‘Stellar Year’
National RV Communities LLC (NRVC) is having “a stellar year,” CEO Dave Napp told Woodall’s Campground Management.
In exclusive comments to WCM, Napp said the Scottsdale, Ariz.-based NRVC, doing business as Carefree RV Resorts, combined RV and manufactured housing (MH) community revenues are up 6.71% year-to-date through July over the same seven-month period for 2011.
NRVC is the nation’s 10th largest owner/operator of destination RV and manufactured housing communities in the U.S. and Canada.
“We continue to aggressively manage expenses and have experienced only a 1.88% increase in expenses year-to-date through July 2012 over the same seven-month period for 2011,” Napp said. “The combined increase in revenues and holding down expense increases has resulted in a 10.5% increase in our net operating income over last year. In the midst of a recession, this is a spectacular result and is a credit to our senior management team, property managers and our entire associate staff for staying the course and keeping true to our Carefree mission.”
NRVC’s 58 communities contain more than 13,300 sites. Of the 58 properties, 46 are located in Florida. Other properties are located in Texas (4), New Jersey (3) and one each in California, Ontario, Massachusetts, Arizona and North Carolina.
Napp projects 2012 revenues from all 58 properties to reach $56 million and operating expenses to total $24.7 million, yielding net income of $31.2 million. He places the fair market value of the combined properties at $462 million.
In addition to delivering these financial results, Carefree has been executing an aggressive agenda to secure its future growth as well, he said. Some of the highlights
• Upgrading front office software to Resort Data Processing. This involved converting 39 parks to the new operating system and is a major initiative for Carefree allowing the company to not only better manage its site inventory and allow it to fully use the Internet as a booking engine, but also greatly enhance the company’s ability to communicate with its customers and thus develop a more meaningful relationship with them.
• Launching a New Website. In concert with upgrading its front office system, Carefree is also launching a new website in October. “The new site gets right to the heart of our customer, is easy to navigate, provides great information on our properties and surrounding areas and most importantly allows for an endless range of reservation booking options,” Napp said. “The new site is clean and original and will be a definite WOW for the RV industry.”
• Launching the Fall Semester of Carefree College. This fall the company is starting to host training programs from Dunedin RV Resort in Florida where it has the classroom space and motel accommodations to allow it to bring in groups of property managers and on-site staff members for training seminars and work groups. The three-prong training program will provide group work sessions in more of a classroom setting; web- based training sessions implementing the work that Blake Ashdown has done in developing web-based training programs; and on-location training sessions on topics such as property maintenance, front desk interactions and Carefree branding “look and feel.” “We feel strongly that the best-trained staff provides the best quality customer service and at Carefree that is our No. 1 operating goal,” Napp said.
• Redevelopment of Sunset Harbor in Key West. The redeveloped manufactured housing property on Stock Island, which will have its grand opening this fall, will feature a large waterfront pool, pavilion, bathhouse and outdoor grilling area, 39 canal front sites with private docks and 13 water view sites overlooking Cow Key Marina. The company’s home design team worked closely with Jacobsen Homes to design three large floorplans featuring two bedrooms, two bathrooms, metal roofs, hardy board siding and porches. These Jacobsen homes have great Key West style furnishings and just cry out “Margaretaville,” Napp said. “We really have developed what we believe is the best housing value in the Key West market providing the perfect Florida Keys experience “Fun, Sun and Blue Waters.”
Founded in 2005 by Napp and Colleen Edwards, the company is in an expansion mode.
Historically, the company has sought properties in key destination vacation markets that have a proven history of attracting both leisure travelers and retirees seeking warm weather.
NRVC wholly owns 47 of its RV and MH communities and owns a 20% interest in the remaining 11 MH properties, pursuant to a joint venture with GE Capital (National Home Communities or NHC).
The 47 RV and MH properties total 11,500 sites with a gross market value of approximately $380 million, according to an executive summary of the NRVC operations. The 2012 budgeted net operating income is approximately $26 million, including new acquisitions.
NHC owns and operates 11 MH properties located in Florida totaling 1,800 MH sites with a gross fair market value of approximately $83 million. The 2012 budgeted net operating income of these 11 MH properties is approximately $5.2 million.
NRVC is owned by its management team and Almanac Realty Investors, formerly known as Rothschild Realty Inc., a New York City-based real estate investment adviser to public and private institutional pension plans, endowments and foundations. Almanac has invested $115 million in the company since 2005.
GE Capital has provided some $190 million during its long-term relationship with NRVC.