What Renters Want in 2021

Renters’ tastes always change and evolve throughout the years, but the pandemic of 2020 was a catalyst for a huge shift in what tenants look for in a multifamily property.  A one-bedroom apartment isn’t just where a young professional chills out and sleeps after work, it’s now their office, home, gym and vacation destination! This new reality has transformed what renters want in their “everything-home!” These five trends will influence how renters choose a place to live in 2021 and beyond.

1. Fast and Ambient Connectivity

Work from home is the new normal. Even as vaccines start to roll out, many companies are not bringing people back into the office on a full time basis for the foreseeable future. Tenants are now working from home, and a speedy, reliable internet is a must as is cellular connectivity. Free (or very low-cost) Wi-Fi is now seen as a very desirable amenity.

2. Work from Home Space

As outlined above, more people are working remotely and having a designated work space is crucial. Properties that have a built-in desk nook or some other quiet area to work or study, or on-site communal work spaces will be attractive to renters in 2021. Landlords are looking at possibly converting amenities like party rooms into socially distanced work spaces. As well, renters that may have leased a one-bedroom might now be eyeballing two-bedroom apartments in order to have a “Zoom Room” to call their own.

3. Affordable Comfort

If there is one thing that became clear during the pandemic is that we don’t need all the bells and whistles. We want and need basic comfort. Prospective renters are on the hunt for a property that is comfortable yet economical. While there will always be a market for high-end luxury apartments, many renters typically are prioritizing a simpler lifestyle. But that doesn’t mean roughing it! Modern appliances and in-suite laundry are some of the most important features that renters are looking for. As well, things like efficient windows or other factors that help lower heating costs are moving up the priority list. Being able to turn down the heat while at the office is no longer an option, and tenants will look for ways to offset these higher costs.

4. Wide Open Spaces & Increased Suburbanization

In 2021, renters will want to have safe areas to get out and stretch their legs. Having a park or open space near the property will be a selling point. More than ever, with concerns relating to dense populations and mass transit in a pandemic world, renters are reconsidering urban living and seeking out more suburban locations that have more space and even a yard. With urban workers continuing to work from home, their rental location no longer has to be tied to getting to work, and there could be a shift to smaller satellite communities. 


5. Safe & Secure

What this pandemic has brought to the forefront is the need for a “nest” that is healthy and uses technology to ensure personal safety. Most millennials, the largest current demographic, are willing to pay more for an apartment with smart technology. Tools like a communication portal or the ability to pay rent online that bypass in-person meetings or dropping off cheques are seen as not just convenient, but as modern necessities.

As well, improved safety and energy savings are most compelling for potential renters, so focus on highlighting those features. Smart security and technology that helps control heating and lighting have risen in importance over the last few years. Smart home security can also decrease the operational tasks of property managers. When tenants monitor their own home security, they add to a building’s overall safety.

The Appeal of Property Vista

Property Vista gives you all the tools you need to appeal to renters in 2021 – from communication portals to online payments and beyond. Our integrated and holistic solution built by property managers helps you grow your business, boost tenant stickiness and improve your bottom line. See pricing and get a demo.