To communicate with property managers, 79% of renters think they should be able to get everything they need through direct message, text, or chat. “It’s a lot of good news for property managers as ‘centralization’ is one of the biggest buzzwords in the industry right now,” Parsons explains. “This data point really supports the strategy of saying 4 out of 5 of your residents don’t want to talk to you in person and that a lot of issues can be resolved by somebody at centralized location.”
Interestingly, the survey found that Gen X renters have adapted to using technology to find their next rental, while Gen Z wants to focus on community and use more social channels to determine their next rental. When researching properties, Gen X is more likely to research the crime history of a neighborhood, and the younger group is more likely to dive into the lease agreement terms and pet policies.
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“There’s a shift happening where younger renters want to have more direct control over the search process,” says Parsons. “They want to be able to look at reviews and ratings, do a virtual tour, maybe even talk to somebody who lives in the apartment community.”
All generations note a quiet environment and parking, or a garage option, are the most important amenities when choosing a new property. Additionally, safety, comparable monthly rates, and good online ratings and reviews are the most important characteristics for finding a new rental.
In correlation with a quiet environment, respondents say that problems with neighbors, such as noise, and slow-to-respond property managers are significant factors in deciding not to renew a lease. If property managers update their unit, provide quick and quality repairs, offer flexible lease terms, and provide online renewal lease signing, renters in all age groups are more likely to renew.
Older groups say they are more likely to renew to “avoid the hassle and cost of moving,” while younger renters are more influenced by upgraded amenities and new technology.
“I think a lot of property managers are aware of these differences in generations, but having data to support it can really be a powerful way to expedite changes and some of the evolution of how we service residents, but also, hopefully, this gives property managers some comfort that the data supports a lot of things that they’re already doing,” Parsons concludes.
Source: Multifamily Executive