For many students, off-campus housing is an exciting choice after their sophomore year.
Finding the right place at the right price that is professionally managed can be hard to come by. Brockway Properties, LLC has several features that make this process easier. Furthermore, according to founder and managing partner Michael Embrescia, it is the only company in the area that caters almost exclusively to John Carroll students
Embrescia said he has been working to sculpt the perfect environment for students’ off-campus living experience one property at a time.
Over the past 13 years, Brockway Properties has grown from a single duplex on Brockway Road in University Heights (after which the company is named) to multiple houses and triplexes.
“On some occasions, before we even owned the houses, we took JCU students to approve [the houses] before they rented them,” said Embrescia.
Their relationship with the University is growing. Brockway Properties’ creditability and unique experience has helped develop an internship program that includes marketing, financing and property management. The company is currently working with the University to determine the credit hours.
Brockway Properties has also developed an all-encompassing brochure. This brochure was developed by JCU students describing their exact budgets down to food cost accumulated over the course of a school year. The brochure is an insight into students’ living expenses and can be a great resource for any students and parents who wish to develop a budget, according to Embrescia.
Brockway Properties rented 80 percent of their properties for the 2012-2013 school year before Winter Break. However, due to recent acquisitions this year, there are still available units.
Since college students are their specialty, Brockway Properties has developed a unique referral program: they will compensate the referrer $250 for each newly signed lease.
Junior Connor Marrero rented from Brockway this year.
“[They are] very good [about] working with us on rent payments. If we were late a few days, like over Winter Break and summer, he was totally cool and lenient.”
Although he will not be renting from Brockway again due to distance from the University, he said, “We [my roommates and I] would recommend Brockway to any other students.”
According to Embrescia, there are many choices for renting property off campus and many questions students should consider, like safety, accountability, expense and parents’ involvement. Brockway Properties goes beyond the safety codes, incorporating monthly evaluations of their properties and bi-annual city inspections. With regard to accountability, renters can email, text or call the full-time property manager and most problems are handled within 24 hours.
Junior Brian Bogart is a first-year renter from Brockway, and said, “[They were] really good about fixing the door, and the dryer [was] not working [but it was fixed] in two or three days.”