SANTA BARBARA, CA—Yardi Marketing Solution'sRENTCafé, an online leasing and resident servicesplatform, is helping property management companiesto achieve higher occupancy in multifamilyproperties. Property management company Terragon,recently enlisted the service for its properties in WashingtonState, and achieved nearly full occupancy rates, averaging between96% and 98%.

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RENTCafé is an online platform that allows prospective tenantsto view available apartments, floor plans and photos. The programhas a mobile app as well that allows both would-be tenants to usethe site on the go and apartment managers to use the site whileshowing the property. “RENTCafé helps apartment managers boostoccupancy by providing a host of digital marketing tools and byproviding real time access to apartment pricing and availabilityand complete online leasing,” Esther Bonardi,industry principal of Yardi Marketing Solutions, tellsGlobeSt.com.

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The resources through the platform are vast, and includeeverything from resident referral campaigns through social mediaand Craigslist ad creation to online applicationportals and a bill pay system that allows users to pay their rentwith a credit card or automatic deduction. “RENTCafé helpsapartment managers attract new leads through our marketing portal,and then RENTCafé helps turn those leads into leases with fullonline leasing,” Bonardi says. “It also helps apartmentmanagers increase resident retention with online and mobileresident services.”

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Additionally the product works with Yardi's property managementand accounting portals, Yardi Voyager. The product is currentlyavailable nationwide and has 1.6 million units.

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The increased occupancy is great news for property managers inWashington submarkets where competition is growing. Severalinvestors are finding value-add opportunities in the submarket,like TruAmerica, which recently purchased a $229 million portfolio withseveral properties in both Washington and Colorado.

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Kelsi Maree Borland

Kelsi Maree Borland is a freelance journalist and magazine writer based in Los Angeles, California. For more than 5 years, she has extensively reported on the commercial real estate industry, covering major deals across all commercial asset classes, investment strategy and capital markets trends, market commentary, economic trends and new technologies disrupting and revolutionizing the industry. Her work appears daily on GlobeSt.com and regularly in Real Estate Forum Magazine. As a magazine writer, she covers lifestyle and travel trends. Her work has appeared in Angeleno, Los Angeles Magazine, Travel and Leisure and more.