Tech Leadership Oct18

Tech Leadership

A survey of property owners, operators, real estate investment trust and developers conducted by KPMG LLP confirms Yardi’s leadership as a real estate technology provider. KPMG, a global professional services firm, reported that: Forty-four percent of survey respondents claim Yardi as their property accounting general ledger system provider. The next most popular provider is cited by 11%. “Respondents said they based their choice … on user friendliness, reporting capability, and cost effectiveness. Similar results were found for fund accounting general ledger systems,” KPMG notes. Thirty-two percent employ Yardi for asset and transaction management. Thirty-three percent use Yardi for leasing software. Asked about their approach to investing in property management technology, 79% of respondents said they prefer partnering with a technology vendor. Many organizations noted that “improved decision-making is most valued, followed by the ability to lower operating costs, and improve customer engagement.” The cloud is the preferred system for hosting property accounting general ledger systems for 52% of respondents, with 21% favoring internally hosted onsite systems, 16% outsourcing the function and 11% selecting “other.” Real estate companies’ technology investment priorities over the next 18 months are, in descending order, investor reporting, cybersecurity, asset management, leasing, tax reporting and fund accounting GL systems. KPMG’s analysis of the survey results also offers clues to opportunities for real estate solution providers. “Unlike other industry-leading organizations, many real estate companies are behind the curve when it comes to taking full advantage of new technologies, like data and analytics and artificial intelligence,” KPMG says, adding that continuing to rely on spreadsheet applications for critical financial tasks “can open them up to significant risks.” Learn about industry-leading Yardi solutions for property management, asset management and investment management. View the complete KPMG survey...

ENERGY STAR Day

Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2019, is ENERGY STAR Day, described by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as “a celebration of energy efficiency” and a means to raise awareness of the benefits of favoring products and properties with ENERGY STAR® certification. And there’s a lot to celebrate. On average, ENERGY STAR-certified buildings use 35% less energy than typical buildings nationwide and command a premium of up to 16% for sales prices and rental rates. More than 34,000 buildings have earned certification, which requires an ENERGY STAR score of 75 or higher, meaning that such a building performs better than at least 75% of similar buildings nationwide. All told, ENERGY STAR and its partners have helped save American families and businesses more than $450 billion and over 3.5 trillion kilowatt-hours of electricity since 1992 while also achieving broad emissions reductions. Another facet of the ENERGY STAR program has been similarly fruitful for industrial plants, while ENERGY STAR-certified homes, apartments and products are built to an equally high standard of efficiency. Yardi is intimately familiar with ENERGY STAR and its benefits. Property managers use the Yardi Pulse Suite to capture energy data for ENERGY STAR® benchmarking and reporting. The company employs experts who can help clients identify conservation opportunities and comply with ENERGY STAR and other standards. Yardi is also sponsoring a series of webinars this month on new ENERGY STAR compliance requirements taking effect in the U.S. and Canada next year. The EPA, co-manager of ENERGY STAR, has recognized Yardi as an energy efficiency leader. In April 2019, the company earned designation as an ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year, the highest level of recognition the agency offers, in the service and product provider category. Check out the EPA’s toolkit for spreading awareness of ENERGY STAR Day through...

Data IDs Ideal Renters...

Identifying quality residents will keep your long-term costs low. Low occupancy rates in the current Canadian rental market allow property managers to focus on selecting the most desirable residents for their vacancies. It is important, however, to make quality selections quickly before those ideal prospects sign a lease elsewhere! Explore how technology can help you efficiently sign leases with the right residents. Know your applicants Basic credit checks aren’t enough to get to know prospective renters. Add a range of inquiries to screening process to give you deeper insights that help mitigate risk—without slowing down the process. “A more robust screening process doesn’t have to be time consuming. Online, automated applicant screening improves speed, data access, and accuracy. Your screening software should integrate with your property management platform for full transparency,” suggests Peter Altobelli, vice president and general manager of Yardi Canada. Screen confidently Regardless of income, prospective renters need to be held to the same screening standards. Equifax credit data, criminal and court records, fraud checks, employment and rental histories are all important sources of information to properly evaluate an applicant. “Consider adding Certn as well to your screening process as well. Certn is the world’s largest risk relevant database, uses data from thousands of publicly available records and incorporates artificial intelligence and machine learning to evaluate prospects,” Altobelli says. Certn data includes high-risk behaviors, criminal and court records from 240 countries, 350 Canadian court boards and tribunals, adverse media, eviction records, watch lists and social media profiles. Understand the benefits  Advanced screening technology that analyzes a range of reliable data can help you consistently choose quality residents. When that technology integrates with your leasing and accounting platform, it brings additional benefits. “An integrated screening solution compares your screening process with the overall...

YASC Turns 20 Oct16

YASC Turns 20

A special anniversary Yardi Advanced Solutions Conference (YASC) kicked off this morning in beautiful San Diego, with 2,500 Yardi clients and staff members in attendance for the 20th edition of the event. Yardi president and founder Anant Yardi reflected on the early years of the conference in his opening remarks. “About 200 people attended the first YASC, and we were thinking, how will we cope with 200 guests?” Mr. Yardi reminisced. “Those 200 people would only fill the first two rows of seats here today.” Mr. Yardi then invited two clients who have been to almost every YASC event, Alex Ruiz of Picerne and Carol Kelly Ball of Sierra Properties, to join him on the stage. Yardi employees Nancy Bogg and Anna Markmann, who have worked on the production of every YASC conference, were also honored. YASC is now a global event, with six conferences annually around the world. In addition to the two U.S. based events, there are conferences in the United Arab Emirates, Australia, Singapore and England. Meanwhile, Yardi has grown to a company size of almost 7,000 employees at 45 offices around the world. Two decades on, Yardi’s corporate focus and mission statement remains the same: focused on client and employee success, stellar customer service, innovating new products and platforms and assisting local communities with philanthropy and volunteerism. At the heart of each of those items is the importance of relationships. One of the most valuable aspects of the YASC events is the chance for Yardi to receive feedback and suggestions from clients, and for clients to learn about new products and solve business challenges. In his remarks, Mr. Yardi offered a compelling history of technological innovation over the last 20 years, summarizing the transition from the early days of dot com, to the mobile and social media revolution, to today’s era of big data, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things. “This is the era of continuous connection. But in the world of business, continuous connection hasn’t fully come to fruition. Our goal is to make that happen and provide the tools and technologies that you need,” Mr. Yardi said. Yardi clients look forward to hearing about forthcoming advances in products and innovation at YASC, and Wednesday’s general session offered a breadth of such insight. Following Mr. Yardi’s presentation, Rob Teel, senior vice president, and Kevin Yardi, vice president, consulting practices, offered a detailed look at the Yardi Elevate suite for operational performance, Yardi Energy Suite for energy management, and Yardi Kube for coworking management. “We’re not just chasing dreams,” Mr. Teel said. “Most of the things that Anant mentioned, there are solutions at the end of it that will help your business.” Attendees at YASC will explore those solutions over the next two and a half days and also have a little fun. A special #YASCTurns20 party is planned for Thursday night on the U.S.S. Midway, near the conference venue on the San Diego waterfront. Find a full lineup of YASC highlights and information. To follow along with the event, use the hashtag #YASCTurns20 and follow Yardi on your favorite social media channel:...

YASC Preview Oct16

YASC Preview

The 20th Yardi Advanced Solutions Conference (YASC) returns to San Diego, Calif., this Wednesday to Friday, October 16-18. The annual user conference will offer in-depth training, networking and fun for Yardi clients, including a special milestone anniversary celebration. We can’t reveal all the surprises in store, but this is one event you won’t want to miss. “We’re excited to welcome our valued clients to the 20th edition YASC in San Diego. From its early days as a small gathering in Santa Barbara, this special event has grown to be one of the largest and most enjoyable user conferences around. We hope you enjoy the special surprises in store for this year – they’re our way of saying thank you for your support and participation.” Get a preview of YASC San Diego: Yardi Events app Get connected at YASC with the Yardi Events app on your smartphone. Attendees can access all conference information, venue maps, class materials, social networking, in-app messaging and more. Customize your daily schedule with classes, demos, panels and roundtables, and set up one-on-one meetings with Yardi staff. The Yardi Events app is available for download in the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. A browser-based version, synced to the mobile app, will also be available, so attendees can access the app features from their desktop. User log-in details have been emailed to all registered YASC attendees. Questions? Email our team at yasc@yardi.com. Get personal attention Did you know our Knowledge Central experts have an average Yardi tenure of nearly 5 years? We’ve brought together a friendly group of experts that includes team leads, consultants, and senior account managers to answer your toughest questions, solve your trickiest challenges, and guide you through our newest software solutions. Find Knowledge Central operating hours in the Yardi Events app and be sure to visit our team on the Hilton San Diego Bayfront Indigo Level. Connect with others How many industry connections can you make in three days? There will be over 1,500 attendees representing nearly every segment of the real estate sector at YASC. The conference will offer expanded opportunities to connect with peers in your industry, including morning wellness activities, scheduled breaks and networking receptions. For all conference activities and receptions, bring your conference name badge and get ready to network! Visit the Networking Lounge, located on the Aqua Level, to network with others in your market, check in at the office and recharge your devices. Celebrate with us Learning is first and foremost at YASC, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a good time too! Join us at the Networking Reception on Wednesday evening for cocktails and appetizers. It’s a fun way to wind down and get to know Yardi staff and other YASC attendees. On Thursday night, it’s time to party! The Yardi Party is always packed with music and fun with your new friends from the conference, and we’ve got big plans for our 20th anniversary, so you won’t want to miss this. Don’t forget that your conference name badge is your all-access pass for conference activities and receptions. Please be sure to wear it at all times. New this year: fitness activities on Thursday morning If you enjoy getting a workout in before the day begins, you’ll love our new yoga and running opportunities, set for Thursday morning from 6:45-7:45am at the Bayfront Park (outside the Hilton). Follow the signs to the yoga class or join us for a variety of run distance options! It’s a wonderful time of year to exercise outside in beautiful San Diego. Get social Share your conference experience on social media using the event hashtag #YASCTurns20. Follow Yardi on your favorite social networks for conference news, prizes and more. Connect with Yardi on our corporate blog, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Interested in joining us at the 20th annual YASC event in San Diego? Add your name to the...

Improving Comfort

Your tenant in the eastern wing is chronically cold. You’re fighting an uphill battle for safety as your tenant’s employees bring personal heaters into the space.  In the western wing, however, your tenant’s employees can’t get cool enough. They complain of high energy bills while swearing the humidity will lead to mold problems. Uncomfortable tenants are more than a headache. They are a threat to your bottom line. Thermal comfort can impact your tenants’ desire to renew their leases. Additionally, a commercial property with low thermal comfort may indicate inefficiencies in its climate controls or building envelope. High turnover and an inefficient building will adversely affect your bottom line. Thermal Comfort + Your Bottom Line The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers defines thermal comfort as the condition of mind that expresses satisfaction with the thermal environment. It is subjectively assessed by using the Comfort Scale or Thermal Index, both of which evaluate temperature, humidity, air velocity, and radiant temperature. As comfort is subjective, a commercial building’s thermal comfort ranking will vary from person to person. Health and Safety Executive recognizes an international standard which suggests that a building has “reasonable comfort” when at least 80 percent of its occupants are thermally comfortable. Improving Thermal Comfort in Commercial Properties There are three ways to notably improve tenant comfort and protect your investment: 1. Identify and Fix Leaks Address leaks in the building envelope. Contact a contractor to identify areas where your heating and cooling efforts are defeated by oversights in construction or maintenance. Resealing windows and adding weather stripping to doors, for example, are two quick fixes for drafts. Leakage significantly decreases the energetic efficiency of an HVAC system. As a result, the HVAC system may be working overtime to regulate indoor conditions. Have your units...

Easier Medicaid Billing Oct14

Easier Medicaid Billing

For many residents in senior living communities, Medicaid is a stable source of funding for care. But for just as many owners and operators, Medicaid is a source of billing frustration. Since each state manages their own Medicaid programs, senior living providers can have wildly different processes for getting reimbursed for care among their communities. Some states require electronic claims submission – some make it optional. And not all states reimburse for the same services in the same way. Figuring out the who, what, where and how is enough to make some providers reluctant to accept Medicaid recipients. But that’s all changing. We’re excited to announce Yardi Claims Manager, the newest update to our Yardi Voyager Senior Housing platform. Claims Manager streamlines the claims submission process by automating the entire workflow. Staff no longer need to do manual paperwork for each resident and claim. Instead, the solution integrates directly with the resident’s record through Yardi Voyager, so all billing information is in one central place. Staff can then leverage state-specific billing templates to submit electronically and breeze through the complexities of Medicaid reimbursement. Check out how Claims Manager can simplify electronic claims management for assisted living and memory care providers. Save time: Less scanning and filing of Medicaid paperwork means more time back for your team to focus on other priorities. All your claim documentation is centrally located in Yardi, so there’s no shuffling between accounting systems or digging through the state’s Medicaid billing software for submissions and reconciliation. Eliminate errors: If your staff must transfer claims information from one system to the next, reentering data and submitting directly, mistakes like typos, missing details or incorrect billing codes are bound to happen. With an average error rate of 28%, paper claims are no better. Claims Manager handles the transaction data for you, using real-time data to populate Medicaid forms so you can submit clean claims every time. Reduce rejections: Claims Manager conducts pre-checks before you submit, verifying that resident claims are accurate and error free. This helps prevent claim rejections, claim rework and all the back and forth with the state. It also means you’ll have fewer gaps in your revenue due to delayed reimbursements. Track statuses: Customizable dashboard and widgets allow you to keep an eye on the status of your Medicaid claims. With full visibility into all residents that are on Medicaid, from a high-level view down to transaction details, you can quickly see if anything needs a follow-up so you can keep claims moving through the Medicaid pipeline. Maintain compliance: Create a clear audit trail without having to lift a finger. Claims Manager stores and safeguards all resident factors and qualifying conditions, ensuring that you’re HIPAA compliant throughout the electronic claims submission process. You can easily track leaves of absence as well to adjust your Medicaid billing by the right amount. If you’re already a Yardi client, you can learn more about Claims Manager by contacting your sales rep or visiting Client Central. Not using Yardi yet? Get in touch to discover our single connected solution for senior...

Efficient Social Housing Oct12

Efficient Social Housing

Technology is transforming the way social housing providers manage properties. The technological advancements that have already transformed financials and operations are now automating resident-based transactions. The results are increased efficiencies for clients and greater empowerment for staff. Peter Altobelli, vice president of sales and general manager for Yardi Canada, explored four benefits of technology for applications and waitlists in the Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association Procurement Newsletter. Check out a sneak peek of the article below. Revolutionized Application Process Traditional social housing applicant intake processes rely heavily on in-person interviews. Those interviews run the risk of miscommunications and require a lot of time for your staff and prospective residents. “Online, self-service application workflows present each applicant with a consistent experience, conveniently available 24/7. Applicants can submit their information when it’s most convenient for them from any web browser with digital accuracy. This provides more efficient use of staff’s time when reviewing applications,” said Altobelli. Manage Waitlists in Real-Time Using conventional mail notifications, updating waitlists is a lengthy process. Convenient online user portals connect waitlisted households to leasing office staff in real-time. “Connected technology makes it possible for social housing providers to efficiently upload documents, respond to housing offers and notify staff of changes and pending approvals, in real time, and maintain updated waitlist,” explained Altobelli. Innovative technologies enable staff to meet the needs of applicants and residents while reducing administrative workloads for staff. Get the full story, including the benefits of electronic CRM, at...

Power of Community Oct11

Power of Community

For over 30 years, Elsa Granados has worked diligently to help end sexual assault through advocacy and education. As the executive director of Standing Together to End Sexual Assault (STESA), Granados aims to expand the reach of the organization to ensure that a wider population can receive life-saving services and support. New Name, Broader Reach Standing Together to End Sexual Assault formerly operated as the Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center. The organization opted for a rebranding as they encountered a growing number of community members who were unsure if they could receive help from the organization. “Some people weren’t sure if they could call our hotline because they weren’t in crisis,” explained Granados. “Also, the logo was also perceived as the silhouette of a woman, but we also have numerous boys, men, and members of the transgendered community that come forward. After several years of thinking of it, it was time for a change.” After a rigorous two-year polling process, the organization decided on the new name Standing Together to End Sexual Assault. The change has been well-received and staff members are already beginning to see results. Callers are more confident that they’ve contacted the right place when they need assistance or information. Moving Forward as a Community STESA aims to end sexual violence by addressing stereotypes and myths offering preventative education programs supporting survivors of sexual assault Common myths can actually make people more vulnerable to assault. “There is this myth, for example, that black men target white women. That’s not true. Assaults tend to occur in the same racial group,” said Granados. There are also misconceptions on the role of attire and alcohol. “Attire doesn’t matter at all. Yes, alcohol and drugs are involved in a significant amount of assaults. But perpetrators...

LeadingAge Learning Oct10

LeadingAge Learning

There are many conventions and shows in the senior living industry, each uniquely positioned for a local audience, a certain role or a special purpose. But there’s one event that unites more people from across the care community than any other: the LeadingAge Annual Meeting and Expo. This year, the conference takes place from October 27-30. Close to 4,500 senior living professionals will flock to San Diego for four days of learning and relationship building. Event organizers have put together session tracks for sales, marketing, care, operations, legal and more. Anyone in the industry is sure to find something for them. You know the Yardi team will be there too. We’ve got Booth 1417 at the expo, so come by and see what we’ve been working on. Our suite of tools for senior living management are designed to connect all parts of your business on one integrated platform. Kind of like LeadingAge, there’s a solution for everyone. (Plus, we’ll have some small, furry, four-legged guests you won’t want to miss. More on that down below!) If you’re a salesperson or marketer We’ll show you how to drive revenue and increase occupancy. Yardi Senior CRM helps you effectively manage your sales and marketing efforts from initial contact all the way through signing a lease and becoming a resident. Shorten your lead response times with automated follow-ups, then build a personalized communication flow to keep them engaged. When they’re ready to sign, cut through the paperwork with online leases that generate documents in a click. If you’re a caregiver You’ll learn how to improve resident satisfaction and simplify your own workload at the same time. Instantly access resident’s care needs, eliminate errors and capture progress with Yardi EHR, our electronic health record platform designed to work...

Industrial Investment Oct10

Industrial Investment...

While the industrial sector has rapidly grown in lockstep with the evolution of e-commerce, a number of signs are beginning to point to a slowdown. Warehouses and distribution centers continue to be strong performers, but following a massive nationwide industrial construction boom, supply is finally starting to catch up with demand. Given the abundance of modern, industrial supply, value-add investors must have a more thoughtful approach. Sealy & Co., active throughout the South and the Midwest, takes a straightforward approach to its value-add acquisitions, focusing not only on a building’s potential improvements but also emphasizing location as a key driver of asset value. Chairman Scott Sealy Sr. discussed his investment strategy and the state of the market with Commercial Property Executive. How would you describe the state of the national industrial market, given soaring demand and unprecedented levels of industrial development? Sealy: There are several sectors within the industrial market alone, and most are demand driven. Some, however, are moving to a balance of supply and demand. Larger distribution is still enjoying good absorption and rent growth. Infill properties in the markets we are in have limited vacancy and significant rent growth. We expect the trend to continue for several more years. In which industrial market do you see the greatest opportunity for expansion, and what sets this market apart from the crowd? Sealy: Multiple markets attract us for a variety of reasons. For example, we like Houston for its historical rent growth and fundamentals, the economy is very solid. Unfortunately, it can be hard to find potential development sites here because of the high demand and recognition of this potential. If you’re strategic, thorough and able to capitalize, the economic structure is rewarding. Read the rest of this post on Commercial Property...

A Safe Haven Oct09

A Safe Haven

Virtually all signs are positive for the U.S. multifamily market, notwithstanding a $1 decline in the average rent in September 2019. In fact, a new national report from Yardi Matrix characterizes the sector as “the picture of stability” amid slowing overall economic growth, gyrating equity markets and international trade tensions. Rents are up 2.9% year-to-date through September and the average national occupancy rate has been above 95% for several years. Housing trends suggest that demand will remain strong for some time to come, with rents likely to remain steady through the fall and winter months as new supply gets absorbed. These trends have produced a favorable investment scenario, according to the report: “It’s no wonder that investors looking for a safe haven and surprise-free returns have identified multifamily as an asset class in which to increase allocations.” Other highlights from the report include a breakdown of year-over-year rent growth across all asset classes and across lifestyle and rent-by-necessity asset classes. There’s also an examination of rent growth on a trailing three-month basis for those categories, along with a look at supply, capital market trends and a discussion of the federal government’s proposed reform of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. All that, and more, is in the Yardi Matrix multifamily national report for September...

Eyes on Argentum Oct09

Eyes on Argentum

For nearly 30 years, Argentum has been a staple of senior living. The advocacy group, whose membership now represents close to 75 percent of the industry, strives to raise the bar of excellence in communities nationwide. Formerly called the Assisted Living Federation of America, the organization changed its name to Argentum a few years back to reflect the always-evolving industry. They chose the term Argentum for its roots in the Latin word for silver, which pays homage to the silver generation that Argentum members serve. Argentum’s mission did not change, however. They continue to promote choice, dignity, independence and quality of life for seniors. In pursuit of these goals, Argentum has undertaken listening tours across the country, meeting with senior living leaders and exploring concerns. From these research efforts have grown multiple initiatives to accelerate change. New campaigns to support senior living One example of a key senior living concern was the workforce shortage. In the next 6 years, the industry will need to hire an additional 1.2 million people to meet growing demand. About three-quarters of those new hires will be replacements for caregivers who leave the industry. Senior living has an unfortunately high turnover rate, which makes retaining and promoting talent a top priority for Argentum and their members. To that end, Argentum launched Senior Living Works last year. “As an industry, we need to continue to build on the awareness that senior living offers rewarding careers,” said James Balda, Argentum president and CEO, in the announcement. The Senior Living Works website and toolkit offers resources to recruit and engage a thriving workforce. But Argentum isn’t only focused on the labor challenge. In tandem with Senior Living Works, Argentum launched Senior Living IQ, which shares best practices for delivering quality care. The...

New Tech Era

For decades, commercial property managers regarded information technology as a support function, one that was almost always isolated from the strategic direction of the business. Today, with virtually all property stakeholders expecting greater operational control and transparency, relegating IT to a peripheral or firefighting role is no longer an option. The consensus among Yardi’s Dhar Sawh and other experts who participated in a recent Realcomm-hosted webinar holds that IT, as a company’s technology implementation gatekeeper, should command status as a full partner and value generator. Sawh defined the purpose of a technology strategy as satisfying owner and investor expectations for favorable revenue, cost and risk mitigation outcomes. Performing the business operations necessary to achieve them requires visibility into revenue, occupancy and other indicators that spans the organization. That, in turn, requires connected solutions that unify people and resources, from vendors and employees all the way up to investors, in a common vision. He also pointed out that extracting cost and revenue benefits from current operations, rather than actively pursuing new yields, is the most reliable generator of investor returns late in an economic expansion cycle such as the current one. IT drives those results with technology that’s scaled across the organization and empowers stakeholders with automation and self-service capabilities like online invoice processing, payments and work orders. Another example of technology occupying a place at the core of a business is active sensors that monitor a space and preheat or precool the area before it’s occupied. This allows building owners to avoid charges for utility usage at peak times. “This is an example of integrating technology for the benefit of business objectives,” Sawh said. Once invested as a full partner in the business, IT can create positive experiences for owners and occupants by elevating...

Online Payments

Are online payments really worth the fuss? The short answer is yes! But don’t take our word for it. Check out seven reasons why online payments are a necessity for successful communities. Renters Seek Convenience Today’s residents love their smartphones. “According to recent reports, the average American checks their smartphone almost 50 times per day. For millennials, the number is even higher, at 74 times per day. With half of the renter population under the age of 30, digital technology is a game changer at apartment communities for both the residents and property managers,” said Esther Bonardi, vice president of marketing at Yardi. Online banking is one of many tasks that modern renters perform on their smartphones. It offers the simplicity that renters crave: more than two-thirds of respondents to the NMHC Consumer Housing Survey said they seek technologies to make their lives easier. You Seek a Competitive Advantage Offering online rent payments gives your communities a competitive advantage. The most recent NMHC Kingsley study reveals that more than 25 percent of respondents currently pay their rent electronically. Nearly four times as many would prefer to pay their rent online. “An astounding 90 percent of respondents say that online rent payment availability is important or very important when considering their apartment community. This is the second highest rating behind online maintenance requests,” shared Bonardi. Better Security Cash in the leasing office? No, thank you. Fraudulent or lost checks? You likely want to pass on those, too. Online payments offer greater security and fewer risks than cash or checks. Flexible Payment Options When residents have access to quick, easy payment options, you will receive your payments faster and on time. With payment processing, you have several options to extend to your residents. They can pay with traditional...

Employee Profile Oct04

Employee Profile

Meet Penny Bailey. Recognized by her colleagues globally as a valued contributor, Bailey is a product manager who helps facilitate crucial communications between clients and Yardi’s development, sales and support teams. She shared insight about her work and the fast-paced hobby that keeps her busy outside of the office. How long have you been with Yardi and what does your day to day job entail? Bailey: I have been with Yardi 7 years in this month. As a product manager I am the central point of contact between clients, client services, professional services, sales and the development group.  I gather requirements from many different areas and work with development to build out products, then work with sales, CSD and PSG to promote and support the new features. What product projects are you currently working on and what makes them especially interesting? Bailey: I have maintained and enhanced the Job Cost product since I joined Yardi in 2012 with the introduction of Yardi Voyager 7S.  Most recently we have developed the new Elevate Construction Manager which compliments Yardi Job Cost. It has been overwhelming received by our clients and prospects and is fun to demo. How does your work impact Yardi clients and how does their user experience affect your approach? Bailey: The new Elevate Construction Manager is directed to a whole new user base in providing a very clean and interesting way to present construction job information. We have always been good at job costing financials but this product provides a new way to assess job performance irrespective of the financial data which is very exciting. I have been very involved in all the early implementations, listening to comments, suggestions and watching users to refine our user experience and feature functions. What is something...

GWA Highlights Oct03

GWA Highlights

After Day 1 of the 2019 GWA Conference, the event continued with conversations surrounding technology, commercial real estate, evolution in workspace design and franchising. Additional conference highlights included: Design evolution This session explored how coworking spaces pair the design of their spaces with marketing and branding for success. Bond Collective strives to create sophisticated, chic spaces with an exclusive club-like atmosphere. No two locations are alike, each geared toward the specific neighborhood they are based in. The spaces are intentionally branded minimally, and designed as symbols of an upscale modern lifestyle. Typically, the spaces feature separate phone and meeting booths for privacy and multiple seating options, such as bars, couches and traditional worktables. Canada’s IQ Office Suites has established unique design differentiators. Following an initial 4,000sf project in Toronto, they have expanded to five locations, soon to be nine, in major Canadian cities. IQ Office Suites’  decisions on where to establish new spaces are based on the surrounding retail, dining and entertainment options on the same street. Window offices are a huge draw, as well as kitchen space, meeting areas, and work/play areas with a bar and event space. Private offices are also important. IQ’s crown jewel is a Toronto space with 18-foot ceilings and a 5,000sf terrace. This location features meeting rooms, team suites, and other group centric areas. The design has moved away from dedicated desks, something many coworking spaces still consider crucial. Winning the corporate occupier One of the final sessions of GWA featured Dale Hersowitz, vice president of coworking for Yardi, as part of a panel discussing how to attract enterprise occupiers. Panelist Jacob Bates, CEO of CommonGrounds, described how technology has essentially made software into a service industry, and this is vital for corporate clients. Hersowitz explained that providing...

Energy Efficiency Day Oct02

Energy Efficiency Day...

If encouragement to “save money; cut carbon; breathe easier” seems more prominent than usual where you live and work, it’s because today is Energy Efficiency Day, and that’s the key message the event’s organizers are promoting. A nationwide alliance of energy efficiency advocacy groups sponsors Energy Efficiency Day to share “tips, tools and stories that promote the multiple benefits of energy efficiency, from lower costs to healthier homes,” as stated in the event’s website. About 450 local governments, universities, organizations, corporations and utilities are hosting an array of activities including expos, energy-saving device installations, free energy assessments and symposia with thought leaders. Organizers of Energy Efficiency Day, an annual occurrence since 2016, encourage people to stage their own events, such as a “treasure hunt” check of home appliance, lighting and insulation efficiency, and to share their experiences from the day (#EEDay2019). Technologies that lower energy bills and make properties more comfortable are part of Energy Efficiency Day’s focus—and have long been a staple of Yardi’s business. The Yardi Pulse Suite, an integrated set of software solutions, supports sustainability efforts by maximizing efficiency across all property types. “October 2 is Energy Efficiency Day. But efficiency is year-round,” says the event’s website, which pretty well summarizes Yardi’s approach as well. Every month last year, for example, the company benchmarked more than 1,700 buildings across 47 client portfolios in 27 compliance jurisdictions in ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager®. A grant to the BOMA Water and Waste Challenge helped property owners and managers improve their water and waste management practices. Ongoing leadership, innovation and commitment to environmental protection earned Yardi designation as an ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year. The company joined GRESB’s Global Partner program this year as a sustainability consultant and solution provider. Yardi promotes energy management...

Office Market Update Oct01

Office Market Update

A new report from Yardi® Matrix shows that demand for U.S. office space remains strong, with office-using employment sector growth—which, at 1.7% year-over-year, tops overall non-farm employment growth—driving a 0.1% year-over-year street rate increase in August 2019. “Markets with lower-than-average vacancy rates and solid office-using employment growth continue to have the highest rate of year-over-year growth in listing rates,” the report says, citing San Francisco, Tampa, Fla., Nashville, Tenn., and Austin, Texas, as the leaders. Large, expensive spaces entering the market and pushing overall listing rates upward account for much of their increases. Strong fundamentals don’t always produce high listing rate growth, however. For example, two new business centers and 106,253 square feet of available floor space in an existing mall are depressing rates in Orlando, Fla. The metro had the largest decrease in listing rates in August (-5.9%). Chicago, which has shaky fundamentals, had the second-largest (-5.2%). Year-to-date office sales through the end of August totaled $55.2 billion, slightly behind the $60.7 billion registered through the same period last year. Space under construction, 179.1 million square feet, represents 2.9% of stock. The Yardi Matrix national office report for September 2019 has a wealth of information on occupancy trends, supply, office-using employment and more. Download it...

Embark on Automation Sep30

Embark on Automation

When it comes to customer service, your residents aren’t asking for the moon. They just want relevant responses and timely help. Fortunately for property marketers and managers, automation solutions make this “dream land” a reality. These powerful tools help you not only meet those expectations but soar above them. At the upcoming 2019 Florida Apartment Association Annual Conference in Orlando, you’ll have the chance to create your own “customer service flight plan.” Yardi is sponsoring a session titled “Houston, We Have a Problem: Customer Service Levels Are Low” with Don Sanders, principal of Trainer Don’s World. Through the lens of automation, Don will explore the past, present and future of customer service, discussing creative ideas and techniques for delivering stellar experiences. Don has been in the multifamily housing industry for over two decades, and his presentations are fueled by his real-life work. His FAA session promises to be highly energetic and useful, so make sure to attend if you’re going to the conference. While you’re there, touch down at Booth 500 for a quick chat or demo. We’ll be showcasing the RENTCafé Suite, which offers marketing automation solutions that help you streamline repetitive tasks and deliver targeted content to your prospects and residents. Here’s a preview of what you can explore at the trade show: Give prospects a launch schedule to pick from Customer service begins with accessibility. Today’s prospective renter is soaring down the proverbial “home search runway,” and they need smart, simple and efficient ways to connect with your property. They need tools and technology that allow them to manage their time and search with the click of a button.  RENTCafé‘s self-scheduled tours feature gives prospects the ability to book their own appointments, directly from your website. Leasing office staff get notified...