In a survey of more than 2,000 apartment residents, Package Concierge has found half of renters have changed how they prioritize amenities during the pandemic.
Ninety-one percent of those who have actively been searching for a new apartment say that amenities will play a factor in their apartment search.
Among the top amenities listed by renters were package management systems, smart home devices (such as temperature control and digital locks), gym and recreation sport facilities, outdoor kitchen and dining areas and pet services.
“Last year, people spent more time in their homes than ever before, so finding a place to live that incorporates critical amenities is top of mind for everyone in 2021,” said Donna Logback, head of Marketing for Package Concierge in a statement.
Recognizing the demand, major players have gotten involved in apartment smart home technology. Last year, as one example, RealPage company STRATIS IoT, a technology platform that links apartment smart home systems to personal devices, partnered with Alexa for Residential through Amazon.
Managing the glut of online deliveries also appears to be a priority for residents, according to Package Concierge. One in five residents said package management systems were one of the most essential amenities, according to its survey.
The survey shows that one-third of renters live at a property that has changed or upgraded the way they handle packages since the start of the pandemic. Half say new technologies and systems were deployed, and 25% say more staff was hired.
One in five residents were not happy with the way their property handles package management. The top reasons include disorganization (23% of respondents), lost packages (19%), delay in retrieval of packages (18%), lack of social distancing and safety measures (16%) and lag time in delivery notifications (15%).
Amenity preferences aren’t the only thing changing during the pandemic.
Design is also evolving. Research from Newmark found that multifamily owners are increasing floor plans from a standard of 65 feet to 75 feet to create more flexible spaces, such as units that feature one-bedroom plus a den.
According to the survey, 14% of current apartment units are being reworked to better accommodate work-from-home needs, and developers are adding more outdoor space with balconies to meet the needs of workers that stay home.
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