Must-haves on your apartment amenity list for 2021

Tech-savvy renters scour listings for digital amenities like smart home devices, and community-wide ultra-speed WiFi….

Tech-savvy renters scour listings for digital amenities like smart home devices, and community-wide ultra-speed WiFi. In fact, 87% say technology plays a leading role in maintaining satisfaction with their living situation. It’s no surprise that many of them have developed very specific apartment amenity lists that they use to quickly eliminate some properties from contention.

Apartment buildings are no longer just a place to live—but a central lifestyle headquarters offering white-glove digital services that make resident life more convenient, entertaining, and enjoyable. While hardwood floors and in-unit laundry used to top the apartment amenities list, digital amenities that cater to a holistic lifestyle are the new hot ticket. 

They’re not only a sure-fire lure for incoming residents, but they have a lasting impact on your overall bottom line: 

  • Appeal to a new generation of renters: Younger generations expect top-notch digital experiences from every brand they interact with—including their rental property management company. 
  • Foster lasting relationships that retain renters: Building owners that integrate new, digital experiences into their amenities portfolio see a 59% increase in renewal rates
  • Increased ROI: Modern renters are willing to pay more for hot tech. In fact, 86% say they would pay up to 20% more in monthly rent for residences packed with automated tech and white-glove digital offerings. 

Smart property owners are putting serious thought into how they can create an entire ecosystem that touches every aspect of their tenants’ lives. Here are the top must-have modern amenities for attracting this new class of tech-savvy residents.  

7 apartment amenities that attract tech-savvy renters

1. Property-wide internet connectivity

While only 13% of residents now rank in-unit washer and dryer as their top priority, 25% say high-speed internet is priority #1. With more and more offices transitioning to full-time remote work, residents want to access the internet from anywhere in their complex—in a business center, outdoor recreational space, or even near the swimming pool. If your community is fraught with connectivity dead spots, now’s the time to upgrade to the high-speed haven your tenants adore. 

2. Captivating home automation devices

There’s nothing more cozy than arriving home to a well-lit dwelling, tuned to your favorite playlist and warmed to your ideal temperature. Smart thermostats, speakers, plugs, and lights are the digital conductors that create a personalized, stunning ambiance. These new experiences debut a brand new level of customization, allowing residents to digitally stamp their unique personality on a rental unit. 

By partnering with providers of smart home offerings, especially those specifically designed for multifamily spaces that provide fleet management of a variety of smart devices, property managers are upping the appeal of their units with these automated “wow” moments.

3. Secure access

Digital devices open the doors on a brand new way to keep things secure—smart locks. Ending the era of physical keys, smart locks enable residents to access their apartments and public spaces via fingerprint, passcode, app, or simple proximity to a paired wearable or mobile device. 

Smart locks aren’t just more convenient for your tenants—they make life easier for you and your team to move about the complex. Instead of the custodian’s cliche of overstuffed key rings, you can grant leasing agents, maintenance personnel, and cleaning professionals access to required areas via a smartphone. Plus, keyless entry makes it easy to track movements for public health purposes like contact tracing. 

4. Secure package management

In 2018, the average apartment complex reported 150 incoming packages per week and stay-at-home mandates have only added to the home delivery deluge. Inundating property management offices, packages are often locked behind closed doors, inaccessible to residents after business hours. Worse, they’re left unattended on a tenant’s doorstep. Moving into 2021 and beyond, securing people’s valuable possessions is a must-have on any apartment amenity list.

Don’t let your residents fall victim to the dreaded “porch pirate”: offer them the security and convenience of package lockers. More and more multifamily complexes are turning to these oversized mailboxes to safely store incoming deliveries. When a parcel arrives, residents receive an automated alert via text, push notification, or email. They can then unlock their box at their convenience using a smart key or mobile device. 

5. Winning white-glove service

“White-glove service” used to refer to an armada of hospitality staff like doormen, concierge, and luggage porters—and modern residents expect even more posh and personalized services. Using a well-designed app, you can now offer tenants access to “on-demand” helpful hands like dog walkers, pet sitters, and dry cleaners. 

Many high-end communities are also offering more specialty services like party planners to set up wine tastings, prepare picnics, or host cooking classes. By creating a fully immersive experience that touches all parts of your tenants’ lives, you can build lasting relationships and reduce lease churn. 

6. Wellness spaces that “wow”

Gyms are evolving beyond rows of treadmills and racks of free weights. They’re transforming into luxurious sanctuaries that offer wellness activities for both the body and mind. If you’re a fan of healthy living, then add a gym space to your apartment amenity list.

Private yoga classes, on-demand workout routines, saunas, and meditative spaces devoid of light and din are just a few of the modern community amenities fitness enthusiasts crave. 

As sprawling open layouts split into more-private quarters, smart locks are the prime way to manage and monitor access. Instead of issuing physical keys or key cards, property managers can permit residents to enter these private workout spaces via their smartphone. 

7. Robust tenant portal

A casualty of the digital revolution is the humble paper check. Once a mainstay for processing rent payments, nearly two-thirds of millennials never use them

In fact, 33% of tech-savvy Generation Z have never even written a physical check, and view these analog requirements as an inconvenience. To keep up with these changing trends, it’s now more important than ever to offer a robust tenant portal. 

Empower your residents with the easy-to-use digital tools they love, like online bill pay and automated maintenance requests. 

Technology doesn’t only ease the lives of your residents, but sets the stage for the future success of your multifamily community. By creating a community-wide digital haven, you can create a fully immersive experience that envelops work, life, and play into the ultimate amenities package.

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