The Smart Renter: UpGrade Athens County Project

The Smart Renter program is brought to you by Ohio University Off Campus Living, Upgrade Athens County, The Kleinpenny Educational Fund, and Kevin Morgan Studio. Throughout the academic years, we will provide students with information on the joys and challenges of renting in Athens, Ohio.

The Campaign is property of the UpGrade Athens County Rental Efficiency Committee (REC). The work represented is a pilot email campaign initiated at Ohio University as a project of the REC with all graphics, content, and distribution belonging to the REC. Universities, colleges and other academic institutions interested in purchasing a custom-tailored package of the Smart Renter program for their students can contact our Rental Efficiency team here.

Typically, students are short-term tenants, staying one year on average in a rental unit off campus. With such a high turnover, there is little time or incentive for landlords to make any capital improvements.

This is known as the split incentive problem, and over time this problem has led to increasingly poor quality rental houses in the Athens, Ohio area. Older housing stock needs upgrading but there are no coordinated programs to promote participation. UpGrade Ohio’s Green Grade Project would impact the split incentive problem by driving demand for energy efficient rental properties through a web-based rental rating system.

Ohio University Pilot Email Campaign