CoStar executives talk about new features coming to

“We can make the rental agent’s job easier,” an executive said as the company pushes the rental industry to modernize the rental experience.

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In its bid to increase revenue this year, CoStar’s is looking to save property managers money.

With uncertainty in the rental market and the broader economy, efficiency is weighing heavily on the minds of multi-family operators, two executives told Inman in a recent interview.

On-site staffing is often the biggest expense for multi-family operators. At the same time, potential tenants are willing and able to thoroughly research properties as long as property managers provide them with the information they seek, according to Jay Lybik, national director of multifamily analytics at CoStar.

Jay Lybik | CoStar Group

“Today’s residents or future residents, they don’t need to be wooed and held down like people did in the past,” Lybik said. “They want to know what the rent is what the property looks like. Boom boom boom.”

With this in mind, CoStar has outlined the key features it has started to offer operators.

Speed ​​up the process

Renters now have more choice as apartment builders end a period in which they built more units than at any time in the past 50 years.

This extra supply means tenants have more choices of where to live, and apartment owners should face more pressure to keep units full. At the same time, uncertainty surrounding a possible impending recession has slowed demand from COVID-19 highs.

Stuart Richen |

“All economic problems result in fewer people looking,” said Stuart Richens, vice president of products and operations at “Unfortunately, many management companies don’t respond to leads as quickly as they should.”

The company has been focused on providing its customers with features that can respond and create leads that will fill apartments efficiently, Richens said.

Nearly half of tenants recently surveyed by CoStar said they did not receive a callback about an apartment application within three days, Richens said.

“Tenants want to move much faster,” Richens said. “They’re used to efficiency and demand and don’t necessarily get the response they want.”

More information for tenants

The multifamily industry has always sought to give enough information to interest a potential tenant and generate a phone call that would be a sales opportunity, Richens said.

CoStar has worked over the past two years to give apartment owners and property management companies more tools to give potential tenants additional information about specific units rather than community data.

“We’re opening up a lot of new ground there,” Richens said.

This includes photos of the view out of a unit’s windows, 3D tours, and more photos. The company has started adding information about units that offer rent concessions or possible price changes based on lease length or move-in date, Richens said.

Better inform tenants

Richens said about half of people searching are looking for accommodation in a new city.

“About 36% of tenants tell us that they would rent the site without seeing it,” he added.

The company is focused on giving its customers the tools to educate tenants on specific units. The goal of adding more tools to apartment listings is to “better educate the tenant about your property, get them down the funnel much faster [and] have a self-service environment,” said Richen.

“We get a lot of feedback from our customers that their rental staff are being taxed more than ever,” he said. “The more questions we can answer about, the better.”

Integrating AI into the mix is starting to test the ability to use artificial intelligence in the form of chatbots.

“The state of the art of technology, which is starting to rely on natural language processing, is getting really good,” Richens said. “We find that tenants don’t have to call, reach out and wait to be contacted. They can book tours directly through the chatbot.

At a time when many tenants would rather text than make a phone call, Richen said, AI and chatbots provide an opportunity to develop leads for property managers looking to maintain high occupancy levels. .

“Most importantly, these leads are high quality,” Richens said.

Allow tenants to apply directly

Ultimately, strives to give renters the ability to apply directly for apartments.

“We are creating a bridge between and the rental portal,” Richens said. “Apply directly by clicking on the link and going to the rental portal.”

“We want to create this whole image for them,” Richens said. “If they are unable to visit and visit, we want this experience on to be good. Then they can rent quickly by accessing this app portal.”

Email Taylor Anderson


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