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Property Managers Urged to Adopt Digital Payment Solutions

Onbe has published its Winter 2023 Property Management Payouts Survey, revealing that renters are increasingly seeking more flexibility and choice in how they receive their security deposit refunds—and having that choice of secure, digital and immediate refunds empowers renters with convenient access to their money which allows them respond to a rapidly changing housing market. According to the report, 75% of those splitting their refund with roommates stated that receiving payments through digital wallets would have made the experience easier.

For the study, 631 renters were polled nationwide, and 82% of respondents said that receiving their refunds digitally would be an improvement from their current refund experience with property management groups. Digital payments not only reduce payment costs, increase operational efficiency, and reduce escheatment risks for property managers, but they create an opportunity to drive loyalty and improve convenience for tenants with popular payment choices, including options for delivering payouts to digital wallets.

“Receiving funds quickly and conveniently is paramount for renters, putting the money directly back into their pocket and helping them more easily take the next steps in their lives,” said Melissa Hentschel, Chief Client Officer of Onbe. “Fast, secure and flexible payment options help reduce the lost time and frustration that renters often experience when waiting for a security deposit refund, helping build loyalty and create a more positive experience.”

Additional findings from Onbe’s Winter 2023 Property Management Survey include:

  • Sixty-three percent of respondents found themselves waiting to receive their security deposit from their previous landlord or property management group, before moving to their next property.
  • Seventy-nine percent of renters stated they’ve received delayed, lost, or incorrect payments from their property management group, which caused them to avoid renting from the company again.
  • Seventy-eight percent of tenants said that making and receiving payments digitally would improve their opinion of their property management company.

Realtor.com's recent November 2023 Rental Report showed that the U.S. median rent continued to see a year-over-year decline for the seventh month in a row in November, down -0.6% for zero- to two-bedroom properties across the top 50 metros, a pace similar to the -0.5% reported in October 2023.

The median asking rent, according to Realtor.com was $1,717, down by $12 from the previous month, and $59 less from the peak seen in July 2022. However, it was still $313 (22.3%) higher than the same time in 2019 (pre-pandemic).

The Winter 2023 Property Management Survey is the fourth iteration of Onbe’s monthly payments market research survey. The purpose of this particular survey is to learn how consumers prefer to receive their payouts and better understand the challenges they currently face when receiving these payments. Respondents were asked to complete a survey with 25 questions during October of 2023.

For the report, Onbe received a total of 958 responses with a 66% qualifying rate, collected from across the U.S. and from demographics reflective of national diversity. Respondents must have been at least 18 years of age to qualify for the survey; another piece of qualifying criteria consisted of respondents needing to have received a property management payment.

About Author: Eric C. Peck

Eric C. Peck has 20-plus years’ experience covering the mortgage industry, he most recently served as Editor-in-Chief for The Mortgage Press and National Mortgage Professional Magazine. Peck graduated from the New York Institute of Technology where he received his B.A. in Communication Arts/Media. After graduating, he began his professional career with Videography Magazine before landing in the mortgage space. Peck has edited three published books and has served as Copy Editor for Entrepreneur.com.

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