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LoftSmart Shakes Up College Student Rentals

The rush for college student housing is on! As the new college year approaches, students (and their parent$) are frantically searching for good affordable places to live.

Luckily, their search may be easier now because of a spunky startup called “LoftSmart.”

Prospective college renters can go to the LoftSmart site and choose from a number of available rentals. While online, they’ll be given a virtual tour of the apartments, and, if they like what they see, they can put in an application, sign a lease, and pay their security deposit—all online.

This startup makes its money by charging property managers a fee, typically from 4 to 8 percent, on transactions that close via its website.

LoftSmart is the brainchild of 23-year-old wunderkind Sam Bernstein, a former student at the University of Virginia, who wanted to create a Yelp-like service to help his classmates avoid unsavory landlords. By the following fall, he had dropped out of college to work for the company full-time.

After moving to Austin, TX, he met an engineer named Sundeep Kumar, who would soon become a co-founder. The two of them realized that going after lousy landlords was a dead-end idea. A better idea was to help property managers market their apartments.

Growth has been substantial. The company currently operates in 27 student housing markets across the U.S. and lists 250,000 apartments that can be leased through its site.

For the full article, please read here.

Consider investing in a professionally managed portfolio of single-family homes? Please contact Harold Willig at or 917-209-4452.

Harold Willig is the Manager of SpringView Investment Management, LLC, which he founded in 2012. Mr. Willig also served as HFZ Capital Group’s Chief Financial Officer, and was responsible for the oversight of HFZ's Finance and Accounting team. He has over 16 years of finance and accounting experience.

Mr. Willig also ran a consulting practice and provided valuation, analysis, and transactional support services to multi-billion dollar real estate companies. Previously, Mr. Willig served as the Senior Controller and Vice President of Financial Analysis and then the Chief Financial Officer of the Athena Group, a multifamily development company and fund manager.

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