March 20, 2019
Technology packages, including internet and Smart Home features, are the number one desired amenity and driver in appealing to renters, according to a recent Rental Housing Journal report.
Furthermore, renters are willing to pay for it. A similar Wakefield study reported that 86% of Millennial renters preferred properties with smart home devices, and would pay up to 20% more for those amenities upon move-in.
Developers and Property Management companies have been hot on Smart Home devices for a while, as installing these technologies not only helps to drive a competitive advantage and increase rents, but also deliver significant cost-saving efficiencies. Smart locks and keys can reduce operational expenses related to re-keying, while smart thermostats and HVAC systems can alert the property to issues before they become large problems. More recently, platforms like Dwelo have gained popularity as they allow property managers to manage different brands of devices across multiple properties. Just last month, Tour 24, an on-demand platform and app that allows potential renters to schedule self-guided tours, launched across the country, and is already installed in luxury properties in Washington D.C. and Austin, TX.
“We have seen a spike in demand for our Rover Wi-Fi solution due to a rise in Smart Home devices such as Smart locks, thermostats, and lights, which are all powered by Internet and Wi-Fi.” said Terry Koosed, President of Bel Air Internet, a boutique internet and communications firm, that delivers its services to over a hundred residential properties across Southern California, including the Crescent Heights’ flagship property Ten Thousand. “Even properties without the footprint for a pool or gym expansion can increase rents through this kind of technological upgrade.”
The Smart Home trend is showing no signs of slowing. Forrester predicts 42% Compound Annual Growth Rate for Smart Home devices from 2018-2022.
Koosed agreed that seamless Smart Properties are the inevitable wave of the future, however he issues a warning to developers seeking to integrate Smart Devices within their properties. “The number one deciding factor between a top-notch streamlined Smart Property and a disaster is good internet and Wi-Fi,” he said. “You can install the best devices on the market, but if it’s being powered by a sub-par Wi-Fi system or unreliable Internet, they cease to make life easier for anyone.”
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