First Advantage SafeRent Releases MAR Index

By Anuradha Kher, Online News EditorRockville, Md.–First Advantage SafeRent Inc. released its second quarter 2008 multifamily applicant risk statistics. The Multifamily Applicant Risk Index (MAR Index) is based on traffic quality scores from First Advantage SafeRent’s statistical screening model and is updated quarterly to provide property owners and managers with a benchmark they can use to compare their portfolio’s performance. With this applicant risk index, property managers and owners are able to compare their applicant quality trends with that of the average MAR Index trends. This comparison indicates whether their portfolio is performing above, below or at market levels with respect to attracting and securing high-quality, paying residents.The second quarter national MAR Index, including studios, one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom units, was 105. This is a 5 percent increase from the first quarter 2008, which confirms a trend of seeing higher MAR Index values during the traditionally high applicant traffic periods of the second and third quarters. Compared to the second quarter 2007, the MAR Index is the same value of 105. When comparing applicants for one- versus two-bedroom units, the MAR Index is slightly lower for one-bedroom units, at 105, compared to 106 for two-bedroom units in the second quarter.The three Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) with the leading decreases in the MAR Index were Memphis, Tenn.; Phoenix/Mesa, Ariz; and Denver/Boulder/Greeley, Colo., with decreases of four, five and six points, respectively.The MAR Index provides trends of national and regional traffic quality scores whereby a lower index value indicates an applicant pool with a higher risk of not fulfilling lease obligations. A MAR Index value of 100 indicates that market conditions are equal to the national mean for the index’s base period of 2004. A MAR Index value greater than 100 indicates market conditions with reduced average risk of default relative to the index’s base period mean. A value less than 100 indicates market conditions with increased average risk of default relative to the index’s base period mean.