Agreement Spans Apartments, Extended Stay Hotels, Furniture and Utilities


FAIRFAX, Virginia -- CORT, a Berkshire Hathaway company, taps its extensive database of available apartments, broad range of rental relocation solutions and international reach to secure temporary housing and furniture for the employees and their families relocating for APX Alarm Security Solutions Inc.

Each summer APX Alarm deploys teams of sales representatives, and installation technicians for a four to five month engagement in approximately 100 markets throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada. To enable the re-location for the employees, APX Alarm and CORT arranged 1,800 apartments and furniture rental leases for 6,300 people – employees and family members.

Managing the process internally proved inefficient, and the housing management team sought a third-party solution through CORT, the nation’s largest provider of rental furniture.

"From our previous experience working with CORT, we knew them to be extremely professional and reliable, which is critical for a project of this scope," said Suzy Zeller, manager of APX Alarm’s housing program. "Their familiarity with our needs, their geographic reach, and flexibility to work in markets where they did not already have a presence were key factors in our decision to work with CORT."

CORT began managing all of APX Alarm’s housing, furniture and, occasionally housewares rental needs with the launch of their rental relocation services in 2006. With services including rental housing locating, local market orientation tours, car rentals, hotel and extended stay reservations, moving and storage solutions, spousal support services, utility connections and renter’s insurance, CORT offers a range of solutions to help corporations recruit and retain top talent, rapidly deploy project teams and employees and simplify the transition through a single point of contact.

How CORT works behind the scenes to enable seamless transitions CORT develops a dedicated team of locating experts to identify properties in each market that meet the housing management team’s criteria. Their recommendations are presented in an online report with such a level of detail that the APX Alarm housing management is often able to make housing selections without physically visiting the properties.

CORT then negotiates lease terms with apartment communities and provides furniture. Utilities and other services are bundled per market in a monthly lump sum bill. For example, 20 nights of hotel stays and utility bills in Dallas will be billed through a single CORT invoice. CORT arranges for utilities to be turned on prior to a sales team’s arrival and turned off after their departure.

This year, CORT is leveraging its longstanding relationships with apartment communities and the volume of employees seeking temporary housing to negotiate regional housing packages with property management companies. This reduces the number of markets that must be visited and researched and allows the property management company to send one credit application and master lease to CORT in exchange for a lump sum security deposit. Through this process, CORT has provided recommendations to secure as many as 300 units with one agreement.

"Working with CORT is a dream; without their help we could never pull this process off so smoothly," said Zeller. "They provide so much of the back-end work that takes the most time, and if we were to try and do this work in-house we would more than double our workload."

A tested and proven efficient solution CORT and APX Alarm continue to collaboratively explore potential enhancements to the program. Other services that may someday be incorporated into the program as their needs dictate include rental cars, small goods shipping and assistance with renter’s insurance.

"I would never go back," says Zeller. "Most of our employees have no idea how we manage this process, they just know that it is simple and taken care of when they arrive. CORT makes this process possible, and the complexity is transparent to our employees. I don’t know how I would get apartments for this many people, especially when you consider that last year we rented over 3,000 apartments."

About APX Alarm

APX Alarm’s (www.apxalarm.com) mission is to help families protect and secure their future. Now in its 10th year of operations, APX Alarm is one of the fastest growing national security alarm companies providing world-class customer support and service to hundreds of thousands of customers throughout North America. Currently, it is ranked #7 in the SDM list of the largest 100 security installation and monitoring companies. Additional corporate information can be found by visiting APX Alarm’s website.

About CORT

For the past 40 years, CORT, a Berkshire Hathaway company, has been a leading provider in rental furniture and has provided services to more than 80 percent of the Fortune 500 companies. CORT has expanded services to include the most comprehensive suite of assignment and rental relocation services to help simplify corporate transitions, including its online apartment search service, ApartmentSearch.com, with 3 million apartment listings in more than 19,000 apartment communities. CORT has offices in every major U.S. market and a global furniture rental network of affiliates in more than 50 countries. For more information about CORT, visit www.cort.com.