NorthSteppe Realty is among the five lowest rated companies in USG’s 2018-2019 housing guide. Casey Cascaldo | Managing Editor for Multimedia

Not every landlord is a winner, and tenants can attest to that. 

Ohio State’s Undergraduate Student Government’s 2018-2019 housing guide conducted a survey in which tenants ranked rental companies in several categories. According to the guide’s averages, the five lowest-rated real estate companies — on a 1 to 5 scale, with 1 being the worst — are Property Management, which has also been known as OSU Live or Jack Beatley, rated 1.6; Peak Property Group, rated 2.6; My 1st Place Realty, rated 2.8; University Village, rated 3; and Northsteppe Realty, rated 3.2. 

Northsteppe declined to comment. None of the other four companies responded to a Lantern request for comment.

The Center for the Study of Student Life at Ohio State surveyed 550 students in September 2018 regarding several aspects of renting, including monthly rent, maintenance concerns, safety and cleanliness upon move in. 

For the 22 companies included in the survey, the average monthly rent per person is about $550 with an average of less than two utilities included. 

The monthly rent per person with both Peak Property Group and Property Management averaged slightly more than $500 with less than one utility included. The other three companies had similar rent to Peak Property Group, with the exception of My 1st Place averaging a little below $500. The remaining companies’ utilities included: Northsteppe with an average of less than two utilities included, University Village with two utilities included and My 1st Place Realty with about one and a half utilities included. 

Respondents were asked to rate their properties in regard to a statement on several factors using the 1 to 5 scale, with 1 being strongly disagree and 5 being strongly agree.

The average rating for cleanliness at the time of move-in was 3.5, Property Management and Peak Property fell behind in this category at about 1.5 and 2.5, respectively. Northsteppe, University Village and My 1st Place Realty all measured around 3.5 for cleanliness.

When it came to maintenance needed upon move in, all five companies came in below the average of 3.2 for how move-in ready the residence was. As with cleanliness, participants were asked to rate agreement or disagreement regarding whether or not their rental was move-in ready regarding maintenance.  

Property Management came in at about 1.5, Peak Property, University Village and My 1st Place Realty at about 2.5, and Northsteppe at about 2.8.

The average number of maintenance concerns over a year was about five, and all five companies’ averages exceeded five maintenance concerns during the course of a year. 

Property Management came in at almost 11, My 1st Place Realty and Peak Property came in at more than 6, and Northsteppe and University Village averaged about 5.

The participants in the survey were also asked if proper safety measures such as functioning door locks were provided by their landlord upon move-in. The average safety rating is about 3.6 across the 22 companies surveyed, and all but University Village fell below the average, measuring at a little above 4.

Property Management came in at about 1.8, Peak Property and Northsteppe measured at just above 3 and My 1st Place Realty came in at about 3.4.

In the end, tenants decide what they think is suitable housing, and in this case, these five real estate companies fell to the bottom of the list.