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Data Accuracy and Transparency: Why One Just Isn’t Enough


Data accuracy and transparency are both critical to the success of multifamily businesses. It’s not enough to have one over the other when making revenue-driving decisions. The industry is seeing this firsthand with the ramp-up of antitrust probes against property management companies and price-recommendation software providers. 

Putting these data analysis principles into practice ensures that your company is on a compliant and positive trajectory. Everyone is calling on multifamily to act on them–residents, employees, investors, and the government have their eyes fixed on rent prices–but what do data accuracy and data transparency really mean, and how do they contribute to success? 

We’ll explore the multifaceted benefits of data accuracy and transparency, illustrating why they’re not just good for business–they’re essential! 

Understanding Data Accuracy and Transparency 

Let’s first start with context: 

  • Data Transparency refers to the accessibility of collected data, shared data, processed data, and usage. 
  • Data Accuracy refers to the precision, or exactness, of the data’s true value. 

These principles work best together. It’s a synergetic relationship that allows for compliant and impactful growth. But in recent times, whether or not they have been applied to pricing optimization remains to be seen. 

Below is an example highlighting the industry’s price-fixing allegations: 

In a free market, apartment prices are determined by supply and demand from the renter and landlord: Less inventory, prices rise. With more inventory, prices decrease. But price-fixing hinders the free-market landscape, leading to discord between supply and demand since active rents no longer reflect true market value. 

The Power on Business

Incorporating data accuracy and transparency can set your business up for long-term growth. There are several advantages, including: 

Improving Accountability & Performance

Accountability and performance extend to all departments that use data to make decisions, including revenue management, operations, development and acquisition, and finance. By using accurate and transparent data, there’s more confidence in team reporting, which allows you to make the most informed decisions that contribute to the company's success. 

Efficiency & Productivity

Increased efficiency and productivity are advantages of accurate and transparent data usage. When property managers and leasing agents have access to high-quality and transparent insight, they can better share market knowledge and property performance data, leading to stronger decision-making and greater alignment on strategy. Everyone’s on the same page because of improved context, reducing misunderstanding and conflicts. 

Strengthening Stakeholder Relationships

Stakeholders, including residents, employees, investors, and the community, play a crucial role in a multifamily company's success. Transparency and accuracy in data strengthen these relationships by fostering open communication and mutual understanding of rent prices and revenue management. When stakeholders feel informed and valued with transparent and accurate information, they are more likely to support the company.

Boosting Reputation and Brand Image

In an era where information is readily available and public scrutiny is high, companies recognized as transparent and ethical stand out. Positive perceptions can lead to increased resident loyalty and create new business opportunities.

Conversely, a lack of transparency and accuracy in data can damage a company's reputation and lead to distrust, negative publicity, loss of business, and legal and regulatory consequences. 

Therefore, prioritizing transparency and accuracy in data is not just a moral imperative but a strategic business decision.

Putting Principles Into Practice

  • Remove private data usage from your processes
    Antitrust lawsuits have escalated because of price recommendation software backed by private data. Continuing to make strategic business decisions using private data can put your company in legal jeopardy. Consider using public data instead to stay competitive, which returns high-quality and reliable data. 
  • Avoid user input programs
    User input programs rely on information submitted by users. You're at the mercy of error-prone data and a distorted market view. Programs like market survey exchanges require companies to opt in. Your comp data depends on high user participation which can alter market visibility. 
  • Get data from the source
    Going directly to the sources provides transparent and accurate information. But think about your approach–the more traditional market survey route has its challenges. Comp calling and manual sourcing can have the opposite effect on the advantages of data transparency and accuracy. Consider an investment with AI capabilities that can expedite reporting using ethically sourced public data. 

Public Data Provides Both

There’s no other way around it. Accuracy and transparency are table stakes in multifamily modern business strategy. 

It’s no longer an option to deploy just one; property management companies must act on both data analysis principles to be better positioned and thrive in a fast competitive marketplace. By committing to openness and precision, multifamily businesses can create lasting value for their residents, employees, and stakeholders, driving long-term success and sustainability.

That’s what we deliver at ApartmentIQ–data accuracy and transparency. We understand how important both are in the growth of your business. Our modern market survey combines automation and 100% public data to empower companies to make the best, most informed decisions with compliant and high-quality data. Learn more about the platform →