Trending Amenities for 2023

The services and spaces that are leading residents’ wish lists.

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It’s that time of the year when property managers take time to reflect upon the year that is about to end—what worked, what can be improved, what changed and what seems evergreen. Then, putting all these conclusions together, a plan for the upcoming year starts to take shape to improve, outdo and grow.

We’ve also been reflecting and, in this article, we’re highlighting what amenities will make renters sign a lease agreement. But first…

Know your renter

Of course, renters is too broad of a term, so before anything, property managers should build their strategy by considering their renters’ demographics. This is because seniors will be interested in different amenities from young professionals or growing families. Specifically, the former group will be more inclined to choose to live in a community that offers enhanced safety amenities, while the younger generations are likely to look for amenities designed to make their lives easier. Moreover, coming strong in the rental market is the Gen Z cohort, and with their numbers growing, it’s a good idea to keep an eye on long-term investments.

Property managers should also consider their renters’ income before investing in amenity upgrades because residents living in luxury communities are drawn to a different set of features than lower-income residents. For the latter category, the best amenity is, in fact, a lower rent.

Finally, the property location triggers a set of specific amenities—for example, in areas where parking is scarce, offering parking will help lease out the apartments much faster than in an area with students who prefer to use shared rides or other types of transportation.

That said, here are some of the amenities that occupy top positions in renters’ preferences.

Flexible workspaces

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A substantial number of renters have been granted to work from home in a hybrid pattern or on a permanent basis. This shift in the working lifestyle is probably the sharpest modification applied to both the work environment and to apartment design, and will likely continue for the foreseeable future.

So, a substantial number of renters will want a home office in their apartment—in which case the leasing agents can consider offering the smaller rooms in larger units as private offices—but other renters might want to work outside of their apartments.

This close-to-home workspace needs desks with sturdy chairs and lamps (daylight is a delight), as well as a secured private Wi-Fi network. Also, several larger tables for those who need to collaborate to get their jobs done. A coffee bar and some refreshments will serve everyone well. A complete workspace requires some areas with private nooks for those who need to attend virtual conferences or take calls.

Finally, although the era of the printer is long gone, there are still those who use it every now and then. So, you might as well include a printer and some office essentials like pens and paper. One more thing: To avoid overcrowding, a booking platform is an elegant solution.

Outdoor spaces

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These days more than ever, residents want to have a home that offers what several years ago was split into several locations. We’ve already mentioned workspaces; outdoor space is another priority for renters. And it is also closely related to the work-from-home lifestyle.

Outdoor space can take many forms and have various functionalities. More private residents will look for private balconies or patios, or even their own little gardens. Others might prefer shared outdoor spaces such as community gardens, rooftop decks, outdoor kitchens, swimming pools with cabanas, and, for those with children, playgrounds.

Smart thermostats

Of all things tech, smart thermostats are one of the most requested. The ability to control the temperature at home and making the space warm or cool enough is of great importance. Being able to do this from afar is even more desirable, and these devices can be operated via smartphone, further adding to the comfort of prospective residents. Not to mention that this technology helps save on utility costs for both the residents and the property managers (if they choose to install them in all units).

Smart access control

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Keyless entry is another popular tech amenity. Having this perk, residents no longer need to keep track of where they’ve put their keys or carry them around while outside.

Furthermore, it strengthens the security of the property, depending on the type of access control system installed in the community. The high-end ones include a video intercom linked to the residents’ smartphones—this enables them to unlock the door from a mobile app on their devices, even remotely. The community’s shared amenity rooms can also be secured via PIN-protected keypads.

Convenience services

E-commerce was already popular, but the pandemic threw it off the charts. Everybody shops online these days, for anything. In other words, package rooms and storage lockers at residential communities are no longer optional.

If possible, rooms should be big enough to store items as big as mattresses, and equipped property to handle cold storage for food delivery kits or groceries. Also, it’s important that the couriers have access to the property to deliver packages. Another feature that will impress residents is to automate notifications to let them know when they’ve received a package.

Pet amenities

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Ah, pets. Our furry companions have been our friends well, since forever, but our relationships with them grew even stronger and closer during the social distancing period of the pandemic. No wonder their needs are high up on renters’ priority lists when looking to rent.

The most popular pet amenities are dog parks, pet washing stations and pet concierge services. Any or a combination of these services will increase the allure of the community that offers them.

Parking and transportation

This one never goes out of style. People travel, even these days when many work from home and shop online. Some love to drive, while for others driving is vital as their daily itinerary requires it. What these two groups have in common is the need for a secure parking spot. And some extra spots for their visitors.

Others like to mix business with pleasure, so they prefer to hop on their bikes to go around. This means that, back in the community, they’ll need spaces to store their bikes, and repair and wash them when needed.

There are also those who don’t have their own cars. Thus, designated rideshare pick-up areas will catch their eye when looking for an apartment to rent.

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