What Gen Z renters are looking for in their community and from property managers
Watch out, there’s a new generation defining the future of the multifamily industry. While millennials make up 56 percent of the rental market, Gen Z comprises 74 million people, making it equal in size to millennials and baby boomers. Even though they may be young, they have money to spend. They contribute $44 billion to the U.S. economy and it’s only a matter of time before they head into the rental market.
If you rent to college students, you might already be familiar with the preferences of Gen Z renters. If not, you may ask yourself how different are their preferences from those of the millennials? The primary difference is their relationship to technology. Gen Z relies on social media and the internet to make purchasing and lifestyle decisions more than millennials. They understand how to leverage technology to benefit them and find the information they need.
Gen Z is used to having everything personalized just to their liking. From their playlist to their newsfeeds, their world is designed to their tastes and interests. Look further and you’ll see that this generation is the most connected to brands through which they can build experiences. For commercial real estate, this means cultivating individualized tenant experiences.
Finances are often front and center for most generations, but even more so for Gen Z. They would rather put their money into their businesses and savings accounts than into rent. Rental prices that allow them to do this while not feeling house poor are ideal. Longer term leases, 18 to 24 months, are more attractive to this group than 12 months. They appreciate the stability and they want to know what their rent will be over a year from signing to avoid worrying about what their next step is.
Community. Gen Z craves community, one that helps build a creative network. Incorporate resident events and other activities such as movie night, pool parties, and game nights. If your apartment community hosts property-wide events and spaces, make sure you promote them. This will help attract Gen Z renters and help build your commercial real estate community.
88 percent of Gen Zers invest in companies that share their values. Have you sponsored a charity event or local sports team? To attract these renters, use social media to share your apartment community’s involvement in the neighborhood.
As mentioned before, this generation craves a company they can connect with and trust. Figure out your community’s brand and core values, then start building an authentic marketing campaign around it. Share residents’ stories, educate renters and provide them the opportunity to build relationships.
Again, this generation is passionate about environmental causes. In fact, the majority of them define success as having made the world a better place. So, investing in green amenities is worth the upfront costs. Whether you’re building new or updating older units, make more sustainable choices. For example, upgrading the windows to energy-efficient panes and installing eco-friendly appliances are good places to start.
Consumers drive the market, and the best businesses are the ones that meet and exceed those needs. Gen Z may be new, but they are making a large impact on the multifamily industry. So get social and start reeling in new residents!
Broadmark Realty Capital Inc. (NYSE: BRMK) is an internally managed real estate investment trust (“REIT”) offering short-term, first deed of trust loans secured by real estate to fund the acquisition, renovation, rehabilitation or development of residential or commercial properties. The company has originated over $2.2 billion in loans since its formation through a rigorous and responsive underwriting process. Have questions? Contact one our lending experts today.