What do today’s renters expect when looking for an apartment in New York City? Rental apartments used to be merely a place for people to sleep, but in New York’s increasingly competitive market, renters now seek multi-functional spaces where they can live, work and play. A simple online search will reveal today’s average rental listing, which is more likely to highlight Ashtanga Yoga classes and happy hours than stainless steel appliances and hardwood floors. To remain competitive, landlords and property managers are offering renters more incentives than ever to fill apartments quickly. What’s the secret? Here are the top five building amenities renters can expect to see more of in 2019.
Renters today want to enjoy the best of both worlds – a short commute, nearby dining and entertainment, and the general convenience of city life; as well as the suburban luxury of outdoor space where they can enjoy the weather, entertain guests and even grow a garden. An increasing number of new apartment buildings offer beautifully furnished rooftop decks, balconies, patios and courtyards, but these buildings are still in comparatively short supply in New York, and apartments that offer access to the outdoors often come at a premium.
A Pet-friendly Environment
Pet ownership in the city is on the rise, and many apartments have begun offering amenities specifically designed for our furry friends, including complimentary doggy bags, dog-walking services and dog spas. Enclosed dog runs are also becoming more important to pet owners so that their furry companions can exercise during bad weather and New York’s harsh winters.
Interactive Fitness Facilities
Competitive buildings today offer a variety of fitness amenities – meaning more than a few treadmills and free weights. Some buildings provide access to virtual fitness classes, like Fitness On Demand, in lieu of group classes at a local gym. Other buildings equip their fitness centers with gear from coveted brands like Peloton, complete with built-in screens for virtual classes with live instructors. Some buildings have even taken it one step further by hiring instructors to teach classes on-site. The value in this is two-fold – residents get a great workout while meeting and connecting with each other.
Security deposits are a cumbersome expense on top of the already high cost of moving. At the end of the lease, it’s not unusual to wait a couple of months before seeing that deposit back. Recognizing that this is a major annoyance for renters, landlords are turning to technology companies like Obligo to help them become deposit-free. Instead of a deposit, qualified renters in a deposit-free building can give their landlord a billing authorization through Obligo’s platform. The landlord is then able to charge the renter up to a certain amount should the renter default on rent or cause any damages. While this doesn’t rid the renter from accountability, it is definitely a lot more convenient than that pesky deposit.
Smart Home Technology
Technology is disrupting the apartment market from almost every angle, and renters are benefiting from this innovation in big ways. Some landlords are offering renters smart home technology packages for their apartments that include everything from Nest thermostats and connected lighting systems, to Amazon’s virtual assistant Alexa. Buildings outfitted with remote entry systems like Latch enable renters to control access to their apartments without even having to be home, making it easier and safer to coordinate services like dog walking, house cleaning and package delivery.
The rental industry is now catering to the demands of the modern renter, enabling prospective renters to find an apartment building that truly fits their lifestyle. With a little bit of scrutiny and financial savvy, renters continue to raise the amenity bar for rental buildings all around New York City.