The last few years have accelerated a trend toward living spaces that support wellness. One of the results is that outdoor spaces are currently one of the most sought-after amenities in multifamily properties. As we recognize Earth Day on April 22, Daniel Management Group looks at how property owners and managers can attract residents with building amenities and programs that offer residents access to outdoor activity and green spaces.
Changes that Will Outlast the Pandemic
Outdoor spaces were always a priority for building investments, but we saw the demand for quality outdoor spaces increase during the pandemic – and there’s no indication that those desires will subside. People now want more opportunities to socialize and spend time outside. For example, we are working with one developer who is developing a single-story building that’s main differentiator is green space. We have also seen a premium on apartments with balconies.
Understanding Resident Demographics and Location Attributes
Outdoor amenities will naturally take different forms in urban, exurban, and suburban locations. In cities, where square footage is at a premium, developers have to be creative to maximize the use of any space, including rooftop gardens, balconies, decks, and courtyards. Bike rooms or racks, and storage space for outdoor gear, such as strollers and sports equipment, are also draws for residents. In the suburbs, more expansive lots may allow for play areas, shared outdoor dining and entertainment spaces, pools or water features, and more robust landscaping.
Daniel Management Group is overseeing a significant renovation at one of our properties in a southern suburb of Milwaukee to appeal to young families moving out of the city. We have added a playground, grilling stations, and picnic tables. We also rebranded this property to have the word “park” in the name, as it is located next to a large park. As part of the renovation, we upgraded the building’s park entrance with a new wooded gateway and manicured the surrounding landscape.
Don’t Forget Four-legged Residents
Another valuable part of customized property management services in Chicago, IL and the surrounding areas include pet friendly features. Dog runs, especially in urban buildings, are a popular amenity for residents and worthwhile for building owners and property managers to consider adding to a roof deck or underused street-level space. They can be a real differentiator when choosing between pet-friendly locations.
Marketing Benefits of Outdoor Amenities for Property Management in Chicago, IL
Outdoor amenities and green spaces contribute to residents’ satisfaction and wellness, resulting in residents staying in the community longer. This ultimately helps increase demand for the property, rent, and occupancy rates. It also reduces the expense of preparing and marketing a newly vacant apartment to be rented again. On the development and leasing side, outdoor features should be a focus of your development or renovation plan, leasing program, and marketing and advertising materials.
In addition to the perks for residents and owners, greening up our properties also offers benefits to our communities and world. Adding trees and plants to a property improves air quality and supports better mental and physical health- yet one more reason multifamily developers, owners, and property managers should make outdoor spaces a priority.