Quick, what’s the number one thing that prospective residents are looking for when they’re looking to lease a new apartment? It’s not a package management system. It’s not a pet amenity. It’s not a safe, affordable place to live. Wait, no, maybe that is the number one thing they’re looking for. OK, what’s the number two thing that prospective residents are looking for?
Good cell service. (Well, and Wi-Fi. But let’s concentrate on cell service now.)
Do you know anyone without a cellphone (and I’m including toddlers in this)? People barely even have landlines in their homes anymore. After all, what’s the point of paying for a phone that doesn’t even allow you to take an artistic picture of your latte?
In fact, when potential residents are touring a community, many will take out their phones to check on the service. And they might not rent from you if there’s poor service. It’s pretty much an invisible amenity. You don’t really think about having good cell service until you’re crouched at the top of the washing machine with your arm at an unnatural angle hoping just one bar will pop up so you can order your pad Thai. Then, suddenly, it’s the most important thing in the world. Seriously, I wouldn’t even consider living in a place with bad cell service, and I hate talking on the phone. And tell any teenagers they can’t text, and I’ll show you a teenager-shaped hole in the wall. According to The New York Times, some communities are even constructing their own antenna systems so that their residents’ cell service is never interrupted.