Client Success

Walton Communities

  • As of July 2017, 92% of our affordable housing applications are completed online. It has been embraced by both our applicants and onsite teams.

    Jennifer Price, IT Systems Trainer
  • Around 60% of our residents pay rent online. That’s a big number considering that half of our communities are affordable housing properties.

    Jennifer Price, IT Systems Trainer

    The Company

    Walton Communities is a privately held company based in Marietta, Georgia. It develops, owns and manages apartment communities throughout metro-Atlanta and Augusta. With a heartfelt mission to serve its residents, Walton Communities is committed to providing exceptional residential, affordable and active adult housing at a great value in a friendly neighborhood environment.

    The Challenge

    Slow Manual Processing

    Walton Communities manages a mixed portfolio that includes affordable properties. Paper applications and approvals required duplicate data entry into both its property management and screening systems, taking staff time away from prospects and residents. “Affordable housing applications are tedious, labor intensive and very heavy on paper,” said Jennifer Price, IT systems trainer at Walton Communities. “We needed relief from that process.”

    The Solution

    RENTCafé Affordable Housing

    RENTCafé Affordable Housing is a powerful application processing and resident services platform for affordable properties. It makes communication, rent payments and maintenance requests easier for applicants, residents and staff. Seamlessly integrated with Yardi Voyager, RENTCafé Affordable Housing helps onsite team members expedite applications, qualify residents and go paperless.

    The Story

    Faster Application Processing

    With RENTCafé Affordable Housing, Walton Communities saves time with online applications. Prospects can apply via property websites using an easy, accessible and consistent application at any time that is convenient, even outside of office hours. Applicants can securely upload required affordable documents such as social security cards, pay stubs and birth certificates from a desktop computer or mobile device.

    Walton Communities now receives most of its applications online. “It’s a huge time saver for the onsite staff,” shared Price. “It gives our team more time for follow-up and more time with our residents. And the speed with which applicants are approved is much faster.” 

    As soon as an application is complete, the data is used to begin the screening and approval process, resulting in increased transparency. “The compliance error rate is greatly reduced, as we’re not struggling to discern the applicants’ handwriting on a manual application,” Price said. “The software also intuitively asks the applicant to confirm certain questions if it senses that a question may have been answered incorrectly.”

    Better Resident Services 
    Walton Communities uses the tools in RENTCafé Affordable Housing to improve resident communications and provide prompt service. It combines email notifications with SMS and text-to-voice messaging to update residents about events, property maintenance and other news that may impact them on a day-to-day basis. “It has increased resident satisfaction with our communication quite a bit,” shared Price.

    In addition, residents can submit work orders and make payments through RENTCafé Affordable Housing. Online maintenance requests allow residents to attach images to work orders so the maintenance team has a better understanding and can more promptly complete service requests. Residents can make payments online or through the mobile app, as well as schedule future payments. “We have a high number of recurring payments. Residents can just set it and forget it,” Price noted. “It’s decreased our delinquencies.”

    Less Paper Waste 
    Paperless applications, communications, work orders and payments add up to significant time savings and reduced file storage for Walton Communities. With more prospect and resident interactions happening online, onsite staff can quickly access and view real-time, accurate data, allowing them to respond to concerns and answer questions more effectively.

    “As a company, one of our goals is to go paperless. With RENTCafé Affordable Housing, the leasing process has gone from a stack of paper for every applicant to just a few pages,” said Price. “I’m glad that we’ve been using it for applications for two years already. It puts us ahead of the curve.”

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