TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT

Top Modern Features Tenants Want in an Apartment

Earlier this week I shared with you my son’s new apartment in a post entitled, Great Chicago Apartment Decorated On A Budget. Working with my son and his girlfriend to design a really great first grown-up dwelling got me to thinking about what young people really want in an apartment. And, as somebody who has been in the fixer-upper business for sometime, I wanted to know what the top modern features tenants want in an apartment these days really are. Figuring out how to attract and keep quality tenants can be tricky, as the times they are a changin’.  And since many millennials are choosing to rent instead of buy, it just isn’t enough to simply offer this discriminating generation free trash pickup or parking.  So, I took it upon myself to investigate and here’s what I came up with. If you want to bring in long-lasting tenants who are willing to pay top dollar, don’t bypass these tips.

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

  • Do Your Homework

The fact is that today’s rental market has a limited amount of inventory with a seemingly unlimited number of prospective renters. This puts Landlords in a unique position of power but you still need to have a quality product to attract the best renters. Start off by protecting yourself by doing a  free eviction history check on your prospective tenants. You want long term tenants who pay the rent on time and keep your property in good condition.

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

 

  • Update the Kitchen and Bathroom

Upgrading the kitchens and bathrooms in an apartment is a quick and simple way to make a unit appear newer and more modern no matter how long ago it was built. Consider installing a new sink and bathroom fixtures, put in a subway-tile backsplash and upgrade boring countertops for quartz or granite in the kitchen. And if the kitchen doesn’t have a garbage disposal or a dishwasher, now is definitely the time to add them, since they are pretty much expected nowadays.

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

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  • Wood Floors     

Let’s face it, carpets are full of allergens and dust mites. Not only is carpet nearly impossible to deep clean, it will immediately make an otherwise modern space look outdated. Wood flooring, on the other hand, is incredibly easy to clean and will fit in with any décor scheme. Though the upfront cost may be pricier than carpet, hardwood flooring will last a whole lot longer and won’t need to be replaced every few years. Plus, wood flooring is much more pet-friendly than carpet. If you don’t want to splurge on real wood, the good news is that you don’t necessarily have to. There are plenty of great wood-like flooring options that do the trick for a fraction of the cost. I’m using a wood-look tile in my current fixer-upper

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

Wood-Look Tile Used in The House On Cottage Grove

and they used a beautiful laminate flooring in my son’s latest rental that he actually mistook for hardwood.

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | Sunken Pet Play area in Chicago Apartment Building | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

The Laminate Flooring in my Son’s Apartment Looks Just Like Wood!

  • Be Pet Friendly

Most pet owners won’t even bother looking at listings that don’t make allowances for pets. Considering the fact that more people have pets nowadays, especially millennials, you will be missing out on many potential tenants by having a strict no-pet policy.  Consider opening your apartment rental up to small pets under a certain weight, and ask for a pet deposit that will cover any cleaning you may have to pay for once the tenant moves out. My son has a cat and was asked to pay a $250 small pet fee upfront, an amount he felt was affordable and acceptable. In the photo below the pet-friendly Chicago apartment building has a great sunken dog play area that gets constant use by pet loving tenants. What a great feature!

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | Sunken Pet Play area in Chicago Apartment Building | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

  • Smart Appliances

If you really want to impress millennial renters offer smart appliances – like Bluetooth light bulbs, smart temperature controls, high-end security systems and for sure, Wi-Fi and high-speed internet. Renters will have no problem paying a little extra every month for these amenities if it means that they won’t have to set everything up themselves. In the case of my son’s Chicago apartment, all they had to do was log on to an already established network in the building for their internet and cable services. Make your building the smartest on the block and see how renters will flock to your door.

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | Smart Apartment | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

  • In-Unit Washer/Dryer

There is nothing worse than fighting over shared washers and dryers or hauling your laundry to the laundromat, which is why many renters are willing to pay more for a unit that includes a washer and dryer inside the apartment. If you don’t want to install the appliances yourself, at the very least you should offer a place in the apartment with room for hookups so a tenant can purchase the appliances themselves. In my latest fixer-upper because of limited space I chose to install a washer/dryer all-in-one unit which is very space saving and less expensive than buying both individual machines.  But whatever you do, don’t install the coin-operated types – that is one quick way to make your apartment complex seem cheap and unappealing.

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

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  • Be Eco-Friendly

There is nothing more on-trend than caring about the environment and if your rental unit doesn’t offer environmentally conscious appliances, lighting and plumbing, you are making a big mistake. It may cost more money up front to bring in new refrigerators and toilets, but your bank account will thank you when they last longer than the outdated versions and save energy and expense at the same time. Look for the Energy Star seal when buying new appliances.

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | Energy Star Appliances | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

  • Storage Space

With apartments getting smaller and garages being more difficult to come by, renters expect more storage space. Can you capitalize on the space already offered within the unit or add additional storage options? Many tenants will gladly accept smaller living spaces if it means they have walk-in closets and secure spots to safely store their possessions like bicycles and camping gear.

TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT | Storage | www.AfterOrangeCounty.com

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Are you a landlord looking for great tenants? If so, have I missed anything? Please leave a comment below if you’ve got other ideas to share.

So there you have it: TOP MODERN FEATURES TENANTS WANT IN AN APARTMENT

Thanks so much for dropping in! 

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All opinions expressed in this post are my own. Unless otherwise noted, all photos are the original property of Celia Becker @ www.AfterOrangeCounty.com and may not be reproduced without specific permission. This post contains affiliate links which help to make this blog possible.

Comments

  • Xenia LovesPink

    Lots of great advice, although I think paying extra for real wood floors is better, because the fake ones do not hold up as long, and may cause the landlord to have to do a costly replacement in the not too distant future. I would also apply these things to renters who are not millennials. Renters in their forties and up will stay long term if you offer better than the standard apartments because one really enjoys moving. Moving is expensive, takes up a lot of time and is a lot of work. I have been a home owner for years, but I have seen many apartments where I have wonder who the building owning expects to live there. If you want good tenants who will stay long term, then you have to make them want to stay there. Stock cabinetry and mediocre tiles won’t do it. In apartment washer and dryer is also important.

  • Hi Xenia. You make some important and excellent points. And I agree, it’s not just millennials who are discriminating tenants for sure. And yes, moving is such a drag, both for the tenant and the landlord.