6 payoffs multifamily communities see after implementing smart apartment technology
On the surface, smart apartment technology may seem like a way to add bells and whistles to your apartment units. But any apartment operator who has already made the leap to smart apartment units will tell you that the advantages extend far beyond the “wow” factor these amenities add.
Aside from the enhanced living experience they bring residents, smart apartment technologies give multifamily operators an impressive set of benefits: more flexibility for on-site workers, cost savings, a competitive edge, and a future-proofed investment. Here’s what you can expect to gain by equipping your communities with smart apartment technology.
You can charge a higher rent that residents will gladly pay
Smart apartment technology isn’t just about added convenience for residents and staff. It also presents new revenue opportunities for property owners and managers. When S2 Capital offered residents an optional smart apartment technology package that included lights, locks, and thermostats, 82% of their residents elected to pay an extra $25/month in rent for it.
Even with an intelligent WiFi solution or a basic smart package consisting of a hub, door locks, and a thermostat, multifamily operators can open the door to higher rent prices. According to information presented at National Apartment Association’s 2019 Apartmentalize, the increased rent premiums for such a package can range from $25-$40 per unit depending on the market.
You’ll recoup your costs before it’s an expected amenity
Right now, smart apartment technology is considered a perk, and as we stated above, is something residents are willing to pay more for. But as time goes on and smart apartment tech evolves, it will become an expectation from renters. While you might be tempted to wait on purchasing these devices to see if the price drops, you could risk missing the boat on being able to charge for it. The window of time to charge for those devices is short, so by implementing it now, you can see ROI. That won’t be the case if you wait a year or two to install these soon-to-be expected amenities.
You’ll minimize unexpected and costly repairs with preventative maintenance
Preventative maintenance is incredibly valuable to property managers. Smart apartment technology helps you avoid unexpected and costly repairs in your units and in common areas. Sensors on smart apartment devices alert you to potential disasters like leaks, mold, or malfunctioning HVAC systems. In turn, you can save thousands of dollars per year, not to mention the logistical headaches your property staff must endure when trying to resolve these catastrophes.
Residents appreciate this too. When you can fix an issue in their unit before it actually breaks, they aren’t faced with the inconvenience of something not working or having to file a maintenance request.
You’ll gain more efficiency with turns and vacant units
Having smart technology in your units automates several tasks that property managers traditionally need to be physically present to manage. This allows easier, more cost-effective turnovers when a lease is up and while the unit is empty. For example, smart locks let you avoid the costs associated with rekeying doors. Smart locks can be reprogrammed remotely once a resident has vacated saving on-site staff from visiting the unit in-person. Automated thermostats will keep the heat or AC running continuously in vacant units. Community managers can remotely program the system to kick on before a prospect tour so the unit is at a comfortable temperature.
The efficiency equates to cost savings. In the session, Get Smart: Top Tech Trends for Better NOI, at NAA’s 2019 Apartmentalize conference, an executive at BH Management validated that the increased efficiency from smart apartment technology was saving the company an average of $38 per month, per unit.
You can establish a base layer for future technology advancements
Smart apartment technology is increasingly becoming an integral part of our lives, with more and more products coming onto the market every day. So it’s important to implement some basic technology now before you find that you need to do some serious catch up in the next few years.
Having property-wide WiFi along with a bare bones smart apartment technology package will allow you to stay competitive and give you the flexibility to add more devices as time goes on. Are you thinking of implementing self-guided apartment tours? If so, the first step will be getting smart locks, lights, and thermostats in place.
You can automate mundane tasks for on-site managers
Smart devices let residents control many aspects of their apartment using their smartphone. Since residents can self-serve, the number of administrative tasks that on-site managers are involved with, like registering guests, or issuing access codes, will decrease substantially. This leaves more time to focus on more important activities like lead tracking or building resident engagement programs.
As you can see, smart apartment technology is more than a convenience for your residents. Multifamily communities are steadily relying on it for increased revenue, reduced expenses, and more efficient on-site operations. For more guidance on smart apartment technology for multifamily communities, download our latest ebook, Connected Communities: Experiences that Drive Resident Engagement and Empower On-Site Staff.
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