Stressing fun, John Boriack brings leadership skills to HAA and Westchase District
John Boriack punched his ticket to commercial real estate success in a very unusual way when, after graduating from high school, he accepted his parents’ offer to take the money they’d saved for college and launch a business instead. “I set out to find an industry where no one in my family had any experience and I found it in commercial real estate,” said Boriack.
He joined Lifestyles Unlimited, an education and mentoring group for real estate investors, located in Westchase District. With their advice and tutelage, he purchased eight foreclosed homes in 2008 and turned them into rental properties. “I really learned the business from that experience,” he said. “I learned how to work with contractors, learned about financing and contracts.”
Boriack’s education continued with the purchase of a 50-unit apartment community in Sharpstown. “I operated it. I managed it. I dealt directly with the tenants.”
In 2012, he recruited 12 families to invest in his dream of owning even more real estate when he purchased a 200-unit apartment community. “For the first time, I had staff, I had accounting software and management software. I also surrounded myself with a good team, some of whom are still with me today.”
Boriack has repeated that model every 18 months. He is president of Veritas Equity Management which now owns 1,258 units in five communities. Their newest acquisition is the 456-unit Westchase Creek apartments located at 3000 Woodland Park Drive.
“Westchase Creek is the largest community in our portfolio,” said Boriack. “When we purchased it, the community needed a facelift. We added fountains, new pergola and new furniture to the pool area. We replaced a lot of rotting wood and patched the concrete on the sidewalks and staircases. We added lots of exterior lighting and converted everything to LED. We upgraded the interior of the units with new appliances, new flooring, new fixtures and new paint.
“I tell my employees that we have to make sure our residents get what they expect,” added Boriack. “We can make sure they have a home that is a safe refuge in which to nurture their families. We have so much ability to affect their lives in a positive way.”
Esprit de corps
For five years running, Veritas has been named one of the “Best and Brightest Companies to Work For,” an award presented by the National Association for Business Resources to recognize companies that deliver exceptional human resource practices and an impressive commitment to their employees.
“We have a relatively unique culture here,” said Boriack. Four of his original employees still work for Veritas, and Boriack’s wife, Katelin, is Director of Aesthetic Design. She also coordinates many of the company’s employee events.
“Every month we have a party to celebrate all the team member birthdays,” said Boriack. “A second monthly event brings together team members from our five communities and our corporate office staff. We’ve had beach days, fishing trips, spa days and paintball. We like to see our team engage with each other outside the office. As a company, our priorities are clear: God first, family second, work third.”
Boriack joined the Westchase District Board of Directors in December 2019. “I’d always heard about the Westchase area, but I was relatively unfamiliar with Westchase as a management district. I’m very impressed with how much they do. I’ve never received this kind of support from a management district. There are real tangible benefits it brings to the owners and residents of Westchase.”
Boriack is president-elect of the Houston Apartment Association, which he first joined in 2013. “It requires a lot of time and travel, but the quality of people that are involved in HAA’s leadership is amazing. It’s been tremendous for my personal and professional growth.”
Boriack is justifiably proud of the company he’s built in little more than ten years. “We’ve been successful because we’ve established our niche and we stay in that box,” Boriack added. “We’re not going to buy fancy Class A apartments or offices or storage facilities or go after a land play. Our niche is in Class-B housing and giving our residents the best possible living experience.”
John and Katelin Boriack have three children, Danielle, Bradley and Ellie.