What Are Renters Looking For?
Among the different drivers for renters when choosing the right apartment - community, location, and floorplans are the keys. According to the 2015 Apartment Resident Preferences Survey released by the National Multifamily Housing Council in conjunction with Kingsley Associates, the increase of those living in apartments is actually changing communities.
Today, more than 38 million people in the United States alone live in apartments. For these individuals, expectations for services and amenities are on the rise. In addition to floor plans, people want walkable neighborhoods, better package pickup, improved mobile services, and online payment options, among other things, even if it means paying a little more.
As with homebuyers, location is a key factor when people are choosing the right apartment community. The majority of apartment renters like to walk to restaurants, bars, grocery store, boutiques and brand retail shops, museums, art galleries, and even work, as opposed to driving. The only exception is that most prefer to drive to school.
Regarding floorplans, people who live in apartments often struggle with space and configuration. Apartment dwellers want open floorplans, which for small units create the illusion of more space and make furniture-arranging easier. Many would also like floorplans to utilize unused vertical space that is often overlooked.
The key amenity - cell phone service reception. 53% surveyed said they tested the cell phone reception while in the apartment community.
Some of the other ammenities apartment dwellers would like to see include:
Package Pickup Solutions—Online shopping is now a $300 billion industry. As such, apartment communities are experiencing a significant increase in the number of packages delivered to residents. According to a recent study, a standard apartment complex receives upward of 100 packages per week, which doubles during the holiday season. Packages are typically accepted by the management office, but 72 percent of apartment residents surveyed said they prefer some type of free or nominally priced holding or storage area.
Pampering Pets—In 2016, pet owners will spend roughly $60 billion. Currently, 33 percent of all apartment dwellers have at least one pet. Because pampering is often a challenge when living in an apartment, people would like to have a dog park dedicated to the community, dog treats available in the lobby, a pet washing station, and available pet-walking services.
Electronic Payments—Rather than writing a check, people living in apartments want the option of paying rent online. Based on the 1.6 million new renter households created in the last five years, many people choose to rent instead of own. Now in a digital age, it makes sense to offer a more personalized online payment service.