Which Apartment Amenities Actually Matter For Potential Tenants?

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A dishwasher, toilet, shower, heating, locks that function properly ― these are basic apartment amenities that a tenant expects when they rent an apartment, regardless of building class.

By Holly Welles

A tennis court, yoga studios, fitness area, indoor spa — these are luxury amenities that a tenant can do without. More importantly, they’re expensive additions a landlord or property manager won’t have to factor into their budget. The question a landlord should ask is, which amenities do my tenants truly value?

By understanding what a tenant values and what they don’t, landlords have a far easier time marketing their space. With a focus on the most important amenities, they can stress the selling points that elicit the highest positive response in potential renters and foster lasting interest.

For those in property management who want to maximize the efficiency of their space, we’ve compiled a list of the top amenities that make a tenant want to sign on the dotted line. Landlords always have the budget in mind, so here are the top things you may want to fit into your budget.

1. Parking spots are key apartment amenities

Everyone is familiar with the headache of finding a good parking space within walking distance of their destination. It’s the perennial excuse of the perpetually late. An inability to secure parking should in no way carry over to a residential context, where it’s fair for a paying tenant to expect an open space.

Properties that boast large parking areas are in high demand, especially those with covered garages. Tenants in states where inclement weather is the norm will look for covered parking to protect their vehicles against the elements. The value of a building is largely dependent on the space it affords.

Of course, making room is easier said than done. Urban areas, in particular, present a unique challenge, with a high density of buildings that prevent the development of adequate space. Regardless, parking is the amenity that tenants desire most, according to the Kingsley Apartment Renter Preferences Report.

Landlords who can expand the parking lots of their properties or find single spaces to lease for their tenants can go a long way in reducing headaches for potential tenants and solving a problem that plagues any urban dweller.

2. Location

Location is a make-or-break factor for many tenants searching for an apartment to rent. Proximity to a downtown area is a powerful draw for young people who are moving from their parents’ home into a space of their own. Restaurant options, public parks and local sources of entertainment are major draws.

Additionally, potential tenants are attracted to buildings close to their place of work. Many developers are considering the 10-minute bubble as a method of predicting popular rental locations. A shortened commute is a factor that influences their decision to sign. A prime location is appealing to everyone from young single renters to entire families searching for a way to cut down on their transportation expenses.

On the other hand, neighborhoods with a high rate of crime will make a landlord’s pitch far more difficult. An alarm system isn’t always enough to persuade renters. For landlords managing properties in rougher neighborhoods, provide multiple security measures.

Property managers may also rethink who they’re marketing to when investing in properties in urban centers. While many landlords want to attract middle-income tenants away from luxury complexes, consider providing a simple, updated and safe option for lower-income renters in a given neighborhood. Research indicates that rental unit demand will only increase through 2030, and there is currently a troubling lack of affordable housing for lower-income households.

3. Age and condition

Landlords have a responsibility to take care of their properties. This is especially true of older structures where the occupation of past tenants has compromised apartment quality. When a renter is taking a tour of the building for the first time, every chip, crack and flaw will contribute to their final decision.

It’s reasonable for tenants to consider the structural integrity of a building before they sign a lease. The small problems that are visible are often indicative of larger problems hidden out of sight, and these have the potential to grow into serious issues that take time and labor to repair.

Landlords should take care to maintain the bathrooms and kitchens in their units. Faulty plumbing and rusted pipes can lead to water damage, a significant expense managers can avoid with foresight. All of this said, the age and condition of a building aren’t a serious impediment if it’s cleaned and maintained.

4.. Package lockers are important apartment amenities now with all the deliveries

The popularity of online shopping on sites like Amazon has increased package delivery rates to an overwhelming degree. A property manager is busy enough in their routine without the additional responsibility of accepting and delivering packages to their tenants. However, there’s a solution that’s seeing wider adoption.

Package lockers provide an area to keep deliveries until a tenant is ready to receive them. With the number of people using online retailers increasing every day, a package locker is a safe method of storage — an invaluable service that can add substantial value to a property in the eyes of prospective tenants.

Unfortunately for some landlords with B- and C-class properties, the price tag of these kiosks is too high to justify the investment. This adds to the difficulties they face in competing with A-class, luxury complexes that include extra amenities as part of their facilities.

What to Prioritize

Every landlord has a limit on what they can afford. Though they may want the very best for their tenants, managers must strategize to keep their business moving in the right direction. Through comparing essential and nonessential amenities, they’ll be better equipped to provide value to those they house.

If there’s enough room in the budget for a tennis court, it can’t hurt.

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About Author

Holly Welles writes about real estate market trends from a millennial perspective. She is the editor behind The Estate Update, a residential real estate blog, and keeps up with the industry over on Twitter @HollyAWelles

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