Multifamily Trends to Watch Out For in 2020

It’s that time of year when we examine some of the trends we are seeing in the multifamily space that have a direct impact on property managers and investors. Let’s dig in!

Customer Expectations are Changing

The two generations that are driving multifamily are the millennials and the baby boomers. Many boomers are downsizing, and opting to rent. Millennials on the other hand are finding it difficult to get onto the property ladder, and find it attractive and more affordable to rent. Both generations want properties that meet their lifestyle needs and preferences. This means that amenities and services can be the difference-maker in your property.

New purpose-built properties are now including amenities like co-working spaces or communal spaces like lounges, games rooms, yoga/workout rooms, rooftop gardens and patios, and theatre rooms. Savvy consumers are looking for high-end features and amenities that enrich their lives. For example, concierge services, housekeeping and curated events.

As well, we are just beginning to see the rise of co-living, in which renters (often called “members”) opt for a mix of hotel-like private bedrooms and communal living spaces. Here residents can instantly tap into free amenities like maid services, kitchen essentials, stocked supplies of basic items and a ready-made opportunity for new friends.

Technology is Changing

Multifamily properties are starting to introduce new applications across a spectrum of technology, designed to make the job easier for property teams and enhance the experience of residents. At the forefront are property management solutions that are mobile-friendly and include tenant portals for communication and maintenance request along with the capability of online rent payments.

Smart home and smart building applications that help control temperature, dim lights, raise and lower window blinds or unlock doors are increasing in popularity, both as a desirable feature for prospective renters as well as a way of lowering costs for property managers.

With customers looking for digitally enabled and mobile-friendly spaces, interviewees are

Drones on the Job

Once considered highly futuristic, drones are now being used as a highly useful tool for property managers. More and more we are hearing about property management firms using drones to monitor properties for damage, to help with inspections, to offer virtual site tours and record footage for marketing purposes.

The Need for Heightened Cybersecurity

To protect resident and owner information, there has been an increased emphasis put on cybersecurity. From ensuring that there is a business continuity plan to daily backups to ensuring a strong firewall and the countless other steps in keep your systems and all data safe and secure. This is why many firms are adopting cloud-based property management solutions, that have secure data encryption, built-in user-permission levels settings, and automatic updates.

Data Analytics

To see the ROI on investments in technology and innovation, investors and property management firms understand that they will also need to do more with data. which becomes particularly powerful when organizations combine information from different sources to create more meaningful insights.

Using data helps the company make empirically-based decisions that will benefit its bottom line. For example, data analytics will be able to identify marketing channels that are providing the most prospects and those having the best closing percentages. With this type of information, it becomes easier to pinpoint and cut the least cost-effective lead sources.

Gathering data around maintenance costs, where property professionals can pull reports regarding the number, cost and type of repairs per property or region can help with planning predictive maintenance and budgeting.

The Talent War Heats Up

PM companies that want to remain competitive and grow will need to invest in attracting and retaining talent. Job candidates and employees want to see that there is a plan for career-pathing, skills development and professional growth.

When employees feel valued by their employer, they are far more likely to be fully engaged in their work and, ultimately, more willing to stick around. Therefore, managers will need to learn how to be more coach-like and provide ongoing feedback and recognition.

Looking to Drive Digital Transformation?

If your organization is looking to move away from paper-based practices and centralize, standardize and optimize your processes, Property Vista can help. At Property Vista, we provide both the technology you need to better understand your business and the tools needed to make changes. Our solutions come in a modular format, allowing you to choose the services you need, when you need them. See pricing and get a demo.