Tech Upgrades Renters Want (And Are Willing To Pay For)

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As we've reported before, advances in technology are impacting the multifamily rental industry and recently a new article on MultiHousingNews.com cites a survey showing exactly the tech renters want most – and what they're willing to pay for. The article in MHN reports that most renters surveyed said they'd pay more for apartment communities that have specific tech upgrades they're looking for. In our previous article we mentioned some of these advances and the MHN survey data overlaps with these tech upgrades we noted, like...

 

According to MHN and their cited survey software Entrata, “smart stats” are one winner with 75 percent of surveyed renters. The smart thermostats, as we mentioned previously, are thermostats that control the apartment's environment, “learn” the preferences and schedule of the renter, and can be controlled remotely by an app in many cases. Smart stats give residents control over their environment and also cost-savings on heating and cooling bills because they aren't paying for HVAC control when they're at work or away from home.

 

Another draw according to the MHN research is a high-speed internet and/or basic cable package. Offering tenants quick access to the internet and providing a cable package can give your residents peace of mind that they'll have what they need as soon as they sign that lease. Everyone knows that finding internet access and dealing with tv packages can be a major pain – if your community has it in place, that's one less thing for your residents to worry about.

 

MHN also reports that three out of four tenants who participated in the survey indicated they prefer security tech. Upgrades to your community like doorbell cameras allow for a greater sense of safety for residents. Another safety feature noted is key-less entry, which often includes special access codes that would allow designated guests to enter. MHN's survey results put a number on it: renters would pay up to $20 more per month for theses features.

 

Even easier than environmental-control or safety technology, and one preferred by many surveyed, is online rent payment. By saving your residents from writing a check and having to mail payment each month, property managers will give residents an easier payment option which will benefit both tenant and landlord alike. Creating a simple online payment option is ideal for many apartment communities. Residents surveyed overwhelmingly desired the ability to quickly pay their rent online – and that's a relatively simple option that a property manager/owner can add to the apartment community's web site.

 

The MHN survey and article determined the type of tech that residents are responding to, and what might be a positive upgrade to an apartment community. Property owner/managers can determine what tech best fits their property and what their residents might need or want. While upgrading technology can range from a minor to a higher expense, if this survey is any indication, residents may indeed be willing to offset the cost by paying slightly more each month for a more modern home experience.

Elizabeth Wheeler