Fall is fast approaching and you know what that means. Budget season! As you carefully calculate your property management budget for 2022, it’s a perfect time to consider ways to improve your property and resident experience.
To help you be strategic with your finances, we’ve compiled a list of the top three things to budget for in your 2022 plan:
2. Resident Retention
3. Property Technology
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, your residents are spending more time at home than ever before. As a result, residents are prioritizing different amenities for 2022. This is a unique opportunity for your property to stand out by including more of what today’s renter is looking for.
Desirable community amenities include:
• Coworking space: Accommodate the growing work-from-home trend and foster community at your property by adding a coworking space.
• Onsite storage: Over 31% of Americans say they wish they had more storage space. Capitalize on this by turning any underutilized space into storage for rent.
• Outdoor amenities: Appeal to renters with upgraded outdoor amenities like rooftop patios, dog parks, and community gardens.
• Guest parking: Improve the day-to-day lives of your residents by renovating or expanding your parking to accommodate visitors.
You can also increase your property value with in-unit amenities such as:
• Onsite laundry: In-unit washers and dryers are a top priority to renters. Although it requires an upfront investment, your rent revenue can increase up to 20 percent!
• Heating and cooling: Improvements to your units such as central air conditioning and upgraded heating go a long way to impress prospective renters.
• Pet-friendly policy: Allowing pets in your units opens you up to a whole new world of potential tenants. Get a competitive edge by combining this with other amenities.
• Built-in workspace: Overwhelmed by the idea of building a coworking space? Consider adding in-unit desks or office spaces to appeal to remote workers.
While some of the above amenities might not generate ancillary income, they will set your property apart from the competition. Making residents happy improves revenue overall by increasing your retention rate and enticing new residents.
You know it costs more to replace a resident than to retain one. So why not put more effort into resident renewals? Boosting your building’s retention rates also increases your NOI.
The truth is that renters today expect different things from their apartments than they did even just a few years ago. Investing in upgrades that your residents actually want will encourage them to love where they live and stick around.
Options your apartment residents will appreciate include:
• Efficiency upgrades: With concerns about climate change, renters seek eco-friendly apartments. Upgrades like solar panels and energy-efficient appliances appeal to tenants.
• On-demand services: With platforms like Hello Alfred and Handy, your residents can easily order services and deliveries. On-demand services help your residents reduce stress and save time.
• Renewal incentives: Encourage a resident to renew their lease with discounts on rent, gift cards, or complimentary unit upgrades. Let your tenants know about their options when you send out renewal notices.
When considering renewal incentives, it’s important to start by calculating how many leases are set to expire in 2022 and how much the incentive will cost per unit. Some improvements are more expensive than others so review your budget to see what investments are right for your property.
It’s obvious that making improvements to your property is a great way to increase revenue for 2022. But did you know that one of the best improvements you can make is property technology?
By incorporating technology into your 2022 budget will improve your resident experience by improving security and convenience throughout the building.
Here are some proptech upgrades to consider for your 2022 multifamily budget:
• Smartphone-based video intercom system: A smartphone-based video entry system empowers residents to grant remote access and elevates their living experience at your building. Be sure to look for a solution with a highly-rated mobile app and integrations to your property management system for additional time savings.
• Smart locks: Installing smart locks on unit and amenity doors allows residents to unlock them with just a PIN code or smartphone. Additionally, this eliminates the need for handing out and managing traditional keys. It’s convenient and saves you money spent changing locks.
• Security cameras: Today’s renters value security more than ever before. So, upgrades to your existing security system will make them feel more comfortable and encourage them to stay longer.
• Smart thermostats: Simplify the lives of your residents with easy temperature control. With a smart thermostat, they can remotely adjust AC and heating from their smartphone — it’s good for their wallets and the environment!
As you crunch the numbers, don’t let budget season feel overwhelming. Remember, this is a great opportunity to improve your property by investing in upgrades your residents actually want. This list serves as a good starting point for high-value additions.
You know your residents best, so consider which investments they would appreciate most. Also, improvements that will improve the experience of your staff can be a great investment as well. For example, a modern building entry system not only improves your resident experience but can also save time for staff who no longer need to waste hours each week adding and removing residents for the system as they move in and out of your property..
Above all else, create a multifamily budget that improves retention, increases property value, and maximizes NOI by choosing the best places to invest in 2022.