Carlton D. Jones and Patricia A. Wells are partners in a realty firm they began earlier this year after working at Fairfax Village, a large condominium conversion project in Southeast. Jones was in charge of the redevelopment and Wells handled management.

Jones takes care of sales at their new firm, including those at the Fort Lincoln "new town" in Northeast, while Wells continues as management chief, with responsibility for such projects as Clifton Terrace apartments, which the Department of Housing and Urban Development recently took over. Jones and Wells have a staff of 25 and plan to open additional offices. They agree that, insofar as real estate is concerned, the District is the place to be these days.

Jones, a Washington native who has degrees in architecture and urban planning, had been a vice president of Fairfax Inc., which redeveloped Fairfax Village, and earlier was a regional sales manager for Levitt & Sons, when that firm was a major force in this area's new housing market.

Wells said she came to Washington after she finished high school in Columbus, Ohio, and worked as a clerk-typist before joining the Robert T. Foley Co.

"First, Bob Foley gave me a chance to be a bookkeeper and then an accountant, after I took some evening classes," she said. "Then I got into property management. It was great training and enabled me to move into property management at Fairfax Village."

Jones Wells and Associates includes Aulander Stevenson, who is both a property manager and broker and a principal in the firm. His specialty is subsidized rental properties. He was previously a senior property manager for the John R. Pinkett Co.

Another part-owner Michael J. Schaeffer, is director for residential subdivision sales and marketing. He had been in sales management at Fairfax Village. His degree is in business administration.

Donna Sherard is sales manager and recruits and trains new agents.

Both Jones and Wells are aware of the pressures on intown real estate, where increasingly, older houses are being rehabilitated and high-rent apartment buildings are being converted to condominium ownership.

While they approve of the trend to ownership, the firm's owners feel there is an increasing need to have rental dwellings available for people too poor to buy houses. "There are families and persons who need subsidies to live in decent rental housing," Stevenson said. "In some cases it's difficult for management to set a continuing pattern for maintenance and respect for property.

"But we cannot give up. Our theory is that someone has to work directly, but both sympathetically and yet authoritatively, with tenants to make lower income rental housing work."