Decron Properties Corp., a real estate company based in Mid-Wilshire with extensive multifamily holdings, recently added more remote options to its business — a move the company said is already helping in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Decron offers virtual tours of its properties and enhanced online security so that things like leases, which were often signed in person, can be handled virtually.
“We need to access sensitive data. It’s not just allowing your people to work from home. It’s also not jeopardizing or sacrificing your standards,” said Zev Nagel, Decron’s executive vice president of administration.
The company uses Google software to offer virtual tours of its properties.
“That gives tenants the ability to see as much as they can before they show up. And when they do show up, we’ve created the mechanisms for self-touring,” Nagel said.
The units can unlock remotely or have a key in a lock box, allowing potential tenants to safely tour available units.
Leasing agents follow up after the visit.
Nagel said he expects to see more landlords follow suit.
“I’m going to guess you will see a lot of landlords and property owners move to investing more in this,” he said. “Having more of the really high-quality self-service pieces, especially in rent profiles, is going to be more attractive to the renters than having a leasing agent following up.”
Nagel said Decron Properties has already leased units this way.
“While the frequency of moving right now has diminished somewhat, people are still moving, people are still looking for homes, and we are seeing a lot of success in renewals,” he said.
The company is also increasing its electronic rent payment options and rolling out the ability to pay with a credit card.
Decron Properties has been expanding in recent years. After 30 years of being focused solely on California, the company announced plans last year to spend $500 million expanding to other areas.
It purchased its first property in the Pacific Northwest in 2018 and plans on focusing on that region, especially Seattle and Portland, Ore.