Off-campus student housing adjusts to pandemic



Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

By: Crystal Carter-Harrell

JONESBORO-The COVID-19 pandemic continues to put a lot of pressure and burden on everyone, especially property management companies that have to notify their residents about possible evictions.

The Preiss Company Wolf Creek apartments, located at 500 N. Caraway Road, sit directly across from Arkansas State University. Tenants remain unpenalized if their roommate faced the inability to pay rent. The office eliminated face to face interaction, but still receives phone calls, accepts packages, responds to emails and showcases the property via virtual tours.

According to the Preiss Company’ COVID-19 resource page, “It’s important to understand that all existing rent and related obligations remain in place. We are committed to helping those directly impacted by the pandemic, but we rely on timely rent payments to pay our employees who maintain the cleanliness and safety of our community as well as meet our financial obligations like mortgages, tax, utility and insurance payments.”

Wolf Creek leasing and marketing manager Whitney Lawson said, “We are making exceptions for certain cases. The delinquency has gone up, but that is unavoidable. We have extended our late fee period to the 13th of this past month. It just depends on the case and if they can provide proof.”

Online rent payments are available. Many of their properties added a drop box located outside of the leasing offices for tenants to drop off a physical payment, such as checks and money orders. Wolf Creek currently holds over 80 percent occupancy and expects an increase to 93 percent in August from incoming A-State students. They report no evictions at this time.

Stadium View Student Living, managed by Asset Living real estate management firm, went all digital on March 19 to practice social distancing. The furnished units sit within a community area surrounded by unusable amenities, such as a fitness center, an outdoor gym, study rooms, game areas and more.

Jordan Blascoe, Stadium View leasing and marketing assistant, said people are paying their rent and the property holds approximately 85 percent occupancy.

“We’ve had a few people leaving to go home, but a large majority of our residents are still here. No payments have been late that I’m aware of,” Blascoe said.

Most of the residents in the Williamsburg Apartments, a 90-unit apartment complex located less than a half mile from the A-State campus, paid their rent on time this past month. Their community areas are closed. Payments can be made online or placed in a drop box also.

Williamsburg Apartments leasing manager Anna Tribble said, “I don’t have anyone being evicted from my property. Most of our apartments are leased by students, professors and people working in the area.”

None of the properties housing a majority of college students reported cases of COVID-19.

Categories: News

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