Kids of Today’s Renters are Tomorrow’s Renters. Here’s How to Get Them.

When many apartment marketing teams put together their marketing plans, they usually target adults. OK, sometimes student housing communities will target the students, but really, even then it’s mostly to their parents. But why shouldn’t they? Adults are the ones with the money. Why bother marketing to kids? After all, they’re noisy and messy and usually can’t afford the rent. Teenagers are even worse. Completely useless! (Trust me, I used to be one.)


Except that the kids will grow up to be teenagers, who will grow up to be adults, who will, in general, want to move out of their parents’ house, live close to their employment, be near restaurants and entertainment, and have jobs where they can earn money. Yup, those youths will one day be your target renter.

Of course, you don’t need to exclusively cater to kids (beyond a sweet, sweet ball pit and bouncy castle, but everyone could enjoy those). But why not incentivize younger residents to rent from you later on?

For example, make sure to have giveaways geared towards kids. And. Brand. Everything. Don’t just stick with pens. Those are for the adults, anyway. Try something that the kids will like, and that they’ll actually hang on to for years. Maybe a cute piggy bank (with a coin in it already to help them start saving for their future security deposit, obviously) or something?

Hey, kids, who wants to hear about stainless steel appliances and granite countertops?

And don’t just stop there. Think to the future. Say little Timmy and his family used to rent a unit at one of your buildings. Now, years later, big Timothy needs an apartment. Give him a discount on his rent or a benefit such as an upgraded cable package or something for “staying in the family.”

How do you even remember Timothy’s parents used to rent with you? First of all, look at those squishy cheeks! How could you forget that face! Look at the punim! Also, keep a database of renters and former renters, and when people come in, search the database.

Don’t just wait for people to come to you, though. Unless people were horrible residents who turned their apartments into meth labs, ran a brothel out of the unit, or kept their TVs on a little too loudly after 10 p.m., keep up with your renters! Again, keep a database, and send out birthday or holiday cards, or even news about your communities or new communities your company is developing. This could all be done online–no need to go to the post office, just send some ecards or a newsletter email. That way your company name will stay fresh in their young, impressionable minds. Just steer clear of harassment. Don’t email every day, or even every month. Keep it once in awhile, and make it easy to opt out. And then when they’re ready to rent, they’ll come looking for you!

What do you think? What are some other ways of hooking your future renters?

-Jessica Fiur, Senior Editor