Rolling Out

Why real estate pro Eric Pinckney believes in not giving up your home

Integral’s legacy principal is developing sustainable communities

Eric Pinckney is the legacy principal at Integral, which is an Atlanta-based real estate development and investment management firm. With affordable housing being a major issue in metro Atlanta, Pinckney believes in his calling as someone responsible for developing sustainable communities. Pinckney attended the Atlanta Business League’s Congress on the State of Black Business and was a panelist for the discussion of development opportunities and housing policies that impact marginalized communities.

Pinckney spoke with rolling out about his role at Integral, affordable housing and real estate.

What should the community know about affordable housing?

The major point is affordability is very personal. What’s affordable for me may not be affordable to you. But ownership is important. All of those that are still owning houses, don’t give them up. Keep it. It may seem like a depreciating asset and something that’s hard to keep, but nobody can force you out of your home, so stay on top of it and build where you are. That’s what Booker T. Washington was about: taking what you have and starting where you are. I’m hopeful that those who still do own homes in Dekalb, Fulton — wherever you are —you stress to your children the importance of holding on to real estate. Hold on to it, improve upon it, expand it and capture some more.

What’s your role?

I’ve been with Integral since its inception, and our mission is to rebuild the fabric of communities. We believe we all grew up in our versions of the proverbial African village: neighborhoods that were Black, racially segregated but economically integrated. It really takes everybody, so those who have choices and have money that leave need to stay, come back and invest in mom’s neighborhood and grandma’s neighborhood, and support our own.

Where do you see the future of affordable housing heading?

I see it expanding, in many cases going back to the country, certainly suburbanizing. But it still holds true that we’ve got to pick those places that have density and economic impact. We need to keep supporting DeKalb County and Fulton County because they support Grady and the airport. I see the future is in good hands, especially with our youth. They’re wise; they read; they study — and they pay attention.

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