CoStar Heavily Invests in Apartments.com

In an attempt to create the new go-to website for renters, CoStar Group Inc. spent millions on Apartments.com, with much more money to come. CoStar acquired the site last year for $584.2 million. Since then,  $80 million has been spent to expand and update the site, organizing researchers to take pictures of 400,000 rental properties. In the next few years, CoStar predicts the total investment to exceed $1 billion.

The new Apartments.com was discretely put out two weeks ago, and next month, CoStar will initiate their $100 million marketing campaign with actor Jeff Goldblum. He will perform as a Silicon Valley executive bucking for the new website as a “game-changer”. CoStar truly believes the website is exactly that, with more Americans renting rather than owning. The increase in landlord spending for online apartment advertisements alone proves that this industry is starting to boom. Landlords are predicted to spend $1.5 billion online in 2015 as opposed to the $630 million spent in 2014.

The biggest competitor in the industry is Zillow, which offers both rental and sale listings. But Apartments.com tracks 770,000 rental listings compared with Zillow’s 400,000 rental listings. By specializing in rentals, CoStar will be able to keep an advantage over their competition. CoStar also mentioned that the new website is more accurate than others as a result of their new software and researchers, and is able to update 90,000 listings per day.

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Virginia MacKoul

Virginia is a graduate from the University of Florida's College of Design Construction and Planning with a degree in Sustainability and the Built Environment, and a minor in Urban Regional Planning. Virginia joined the Front Street team in 2011, as an intern. Upon graduation, Virginia joined the Front Street team full-time as the Director of Client Services. Ms. MacKoul’s addition furthers Front Street’s continued growth and expansion within Gainesville and other North Central Florida markets. She was promoted to Director of Marketing in 2014 and now manages the firm’s team of interns and oversees all marketing and branding activity. Virginia was born in Boston and moved to Lee County, Florida in 1997. Virginia graduated her high school's International Baccalaureate program and started at the University of Florida with a focus on Architecture. Virginia shares Front Street's passion of giving back to the community and those in need. Virginia's hobbies include photography, cooking, football, movies, music, and spending time with her dog, Brinkley.

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