By Silvia Woodlard
Over the past few years, as millennials become increasingly active players in the property market, the rental properties sector has seen growth. Most millennials seem to be averse to buying a new home. So what do they want in a rental property?
The truth is that you’re going to wear many hats as a landlord when you try to cater to the needs of your tenants. It would, of course, not make sense to try to meet all the needs of every tenant. However, in order to thrive, you’re going to have to be flexible.
Don’t worry about it, though, you can still meet the burning needs of your tenants with adequate planning, especially if those tenants are millennials. The first step is to get an intimate understanding of your potential renters. In this case, that would be the generation Y, better known as millennials.
Aziz Kassim is 25 years old and works as a writer the online service UK Best Essays. He is the quintessential millennial. We asked him to tell us a little more about what millennials want in a rental property and how a landlord can effectively meet those needs. Needless to say, he had a lot of insights to give.
Buying vs Renting
The times have changed and millennials, unlike the generations before them, prefer to live in urban apartments. These young adults don’t want the American Dream of suburban living, like their predecessors. Instead, they want to be near their favorite coffee joints and stores that are open 24 hours a day.
But why has this shift occurred? It has something to do with the housing market crash that led to the 2008 economic meltdown. Homeowners are estimated to have lost $7 trillion in home equity. Words like “foreclosure” because household terms and homeowners were abandoning their homes because they couldn’t afford the interest payments on their homes.
Millennials were watching the whole time and they developed a distaste for homeownership in light of the events that were transpiring around them. About 37% of them are renting at the moment and that number keeps growing every year.
So what do Millennials look for in a Rental Property?
There are lots of factors that a potential renter will take into account when they’re picking out rental properties they can turn into their homes. Most of them have to deal with the common conveniences, such as:
- Access to public means of transportation
- How long the commute to work would take
- The cost of the property and the amenities available
- How close they will be to their family and friends
- The distance to entertainment and shopping hubs
The main determinant, however, is the location of the rental property. In some cases, it is the sole reason that a potential renter would prefer to take your property as opposed to another one with all the same amenities but an unfavorable location.
That’s why urban living is so popular among millennials; this generation wants to be as close to the action as they can get, and the fact is that none of that action is happening in the cul-de-sacs of the suburbs.
Let’s not get it wrong, though; just because millennials as a whole aren’t rushing for the white picket fences, doesn’t mean there aren’t those who are seriously thinking of suburban living. There are numerous considerations that a younger couple might make that would make a suburban residence seem appealing, such as the location, the availability of certain amenities, and their access to major freeways.
There are, of course, lots of other things that potential renters will typically look for in an apartment when they’re making their decision about whether to rent it or not. These include the following:
- How friendly is the apartment to pets? Do you accept them in your apartment building? Are there spots around where pet owners can take their pets for a walk?
- Do you have parking spaces assigned to tenants? Are their extra parking spaces for visitors?
- Are the walkways regularly cleaned and cleared of obstacles and debris? Is there a snow removal service?
- How close is your apartment building to key amenities, such as grocery stores, public transit hubs, pharmacies, and banks? Are they within walking distance?
- How secure is your apartment building? Can tenants feel safe there? This is one of the most important things to ensure in your buildings. All the doors and windows to your apartments should be lockable with functioning locks.
- Do you have television and internet services installed? Millennials need to be constantly connected to the internet and have enough power outlets for their numerous electronic devices. Cable TV services are also preferable. Have them all available at your apartment.
You should make great first impressions by ensuring the apartment is clean and ready for presentation, the paint is new, and the carpets and floors are clean.
Beyond that, there are some other things that potential renters look out for, such as large windows, neutral colors, high-end finishes and fixtures, appliances made out of stainless steel, large windows, enough closet and storage space, and an open floor plan.
Be objective as you look at your property. Think of what would work for a young potential renter and model your renovations on that logic. That way you will appeal to the millions of millennials out there who are looking for the right kind of apartment.
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