How to rethink shared amenities to attract apartment renters

How to rethink shared amenities to attract apartment renters

Shared apartment amenities are more than just a perk — they’re a valuable asset for attracting and retaining tenants at multifamily properties.

From outdoor spaces to secure package delivery, here are amenities to consider prioritizing if you want to stand out from the competition in your local apartment market.

Optimize outdoor spaces at multifamily properties

It’s no secret outdoor space is valuable to renters. According to multifamily amenities research from Multifamily Design+Construction magazine, property owners, developers and designers identified the following top outdoor amenities:

  • Fire pit/grill (66%)
  • Lounge area (64%)
  • Covered parking (55%)
  • Rooftop deck/terrace (54%)
  • Pool (53%)
  • Garden walk/garden path (49%)

It’s important to use any communal outside space in a way that’ll best serve your renter community. Your local climate, the household makeup in your units and other factors will determine what matters most to your tenants, so it’s a good idea to survey them before making any large updates to outdoor areas.

With input from your residents, here are some ways you can cater outdoor amenities to their lifestyle:

Most of my tenants are:   Outdoor amenities to consider:
Working professionals or students
  • Small seating pods for entertaining guests
  • Fire pits, grills and eating areas
  • Lighting for nighttime use
  • Wi-Fi connectivity
Families with children
  • Play structure and basketball court/hoop
  • Multipurpose grass areas
  • Yard games like cornhole or ladder toss
Senior citizens or retirees
  • Garden with benches and a water feature
  • Walking path
Pet owners
  • Enclosed pet play areas with seating
  • Outdoor shower or pet cleaning station
From all walks of life
  • Greenery, lighting, shade and seating clusters
  • Covered outdoor workout areas with padded floor mats, pull-up bar and dip stand
  • Community garden or individual garden boxes tenants can claim

Prioritize safety and security at apartment properties

Many renters have come to expect a high level of safety in common spaces. According to the multifamily amenities survey, owners, developers and designers said the top security amenities at apartment properties are keyless entry, such as cards or fobs (71%) and video surveillance systems (67%).

“Technology has come a long way here,” says Roger Daniel, president of Daniel Management Group, who has more than 10 years of experience in multifamily property investment and management in Chicago.

“Electronic door access provides convenience but can also [show] a history of who enters and leaves the apartment,” Daniel says. “Landlords like it because you can control and track access, and don’t have to worry about keys.”

Along with keyless entry, additional ways to improve safety and security include:

  • Add security gates and cameras to all access points.
  • Ensure parking lots and entrances are well-lit.
  • Install locks and guards on windows.
  • Set up an email address that tenants can send safety concerns or suggestions to, and follow up on their submissions.

Make daily life more convenient for tenants

Many renters prioritize function over flash when it comes to apartment amenities. While luxurious features like juice bars or catering kitchens might look good on paper, more practical amenities that add convenience to everyday life can create a better living environment.

“When I show apartments, everyone asks: Is there bike storage?” says Eric Van Gelder, licensed real estate salesperson at Corcoran Group, where he specializes in multifamily rentals and for-sale properties in Brooklyn, New York. “Some sort of basement space where people can put their bikes is great. And then making it a little easier to access so there's not 10 sets of stairs to get there.”

With the online shopping boom, another important amenity is a protected place for package delivery.

“Package rooms with secure access are very popular,” Daniel says.  

Offering shared amenities that improve the quality of life for renters — from functional outdoor spaces to features focused on daily convenience — can make your property a more appealing and enjoyable place to live.

By the editorial team at Story by J.P. Morgan

Your time is valuable. Process rent payments faster and easier online with Story by J.P. Morgan.