Honeywell Thermostat Pairing

Installing Yale 256 Lock

Pairing Leak Sensor

Haldeman and his team tried for a few years to test various products that were available or even cus- tomize off-the-shelf options. “We tried different solutions with- out any luck,” he said. “Myself and some of my key team got so frus- trated that we said, ‘This is our call- ing. This is our purpose. We have to go build this for the industry.’” So, in 2016, Haldeman and sev- eral colleagues struck out on their own to build a platform specifically for smart rental properties. Start- ing out with a team that had a long history of working together gave SmartRent a leg up, he said. “Some of these key guys, we’ve been working together, solving these problems for seven, eight, nine years now,” he said. “That’s great in a startup. … You really have a high level of confidence — you know what you’re getting. There’s a trust level that allows you to inno- vate quickly.” TSUNAMI OF ROI Haldeman and his team have built a platform that works for property managers of all stripes — single-family or multifamily, four-plexes to thousands of units, long-term leasing to Airbnb and VRBO rentals. The company is

On top of the cost savings, smart buildings also command higher rent. And, with access controls, SmartRent enables self-tours — prospective residents can view apartments at their convenience and apply online, which Haldeman said “removes friction from the pro- cess” and increases leasing velocity. By combining these smart features into one platform, it’s unsurprising that Haldeman says the feedback has been “overwhelmingly positive.” OPENING DOORS The company is by no means resting on its laurels. Last fall, SmartRent rolled out a new parking solution allowing property owners to monetize unused parking spaces. Using sensors and QR codes, guests can rent spots when they’re avail- able. Residents use a window tag that, when scanned, will note in the system that their space is unavail- able — and it can also tell if they are parked in the wrong spot. Other new features aim to improve security. SmartRent has integrated video intercoms into its platform. “It works with a touch screen hub in the unit,” Haldeman said. “If you walked up to visit your friend, you can see them on the video. You can click a button on your screen to let them into

even beginning to sell to some consumers who lived in apart- ments serviced by SmartRent and who want the same functionality in their homes. In the past 18 months, the compa- ny’s penetration has reached 75,000 units. In 2020, Haldeman expects to reach another 200,000 units, and he said the near-term pipeline includes about 500,000 additional units. The huge growth comes from “the tsunami of ROI” that SmartRent creates, Haldeman said. It adds together components that create value for property owners, he said:

• Controlling access and better protecting assets

• Operating more efficiently with fewer staff on hand

• Utility cost savings through smart thermostat settings

• Monitoring building systems such as water lines and get- ting warnings when there’s a problem, rather than finding out after a leak has caused damage. “We have owners reporting back to us that they’re decreasing their out-of-pocket spend on water dam- age by 70 percent,” he said.

16 | think realty magazine :: february 2020

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