Multifamily W Minnesota

What do renters want? Air-conditioning, high-speed Internet top the list

What do renters want? Air-conditioning, high-speed Internet top the list,ph01
The Vintage on Selby in St. Paul, Minnesota

A huge majority of renters won’t sign a lease for an apartment that doesn’t feature air conditioning. Others? They won’t rent in an apartment building that doesn’t feature high-speed Internet access.

Those are just two of the findings from the 2017 National Multifamily Housing Council/Kingsley Renter Preferences Report, a survey of 270,000 renters across the country.

Air-conditioning is a big deal for renters. The survey found that 94 percent of renters wanted air-conditioning in their apartment units, and of these respondents, 92 percent said that they wouldn’t lease an apartment that didn’t have AC. High-speed Internet access matters, too, with 93 percent of respondents saying they wanted this amenity and 63 percent saying they won’t lease an apartment unit if it doesn’t have it.

Other must-have amenities? A high 91 percent of respondents said they wanted sound-proof walls, and 53 percent said they wouldn’t lease an apartment that lacked them. Another 89 percent said they wanted in-unit washers and dryers, with 77 percent refusing to lease a space without these amenities.

Another 88 percent told the National Multifamily Housing Council that they wanted in-unit dishwashers, with 86 percent saying they’d never lesase a unit without one.

Those are in-unit amenities. What about community amenities? According to the survey, no community amenity is more important than reliable cell-phone reception, with 92 percent of respondents saying this matters to them, and 78 percent saying they wouldn’t rent a unit without good reception.

Also ranking high was secure parking for residents, an amenity that 88 percet of respondents listed as important and 71 percent saying they wouldn’t rent without. A swimming pool was an important feature for 84 percent of respondents, though only 60 percent said they wouldn’t rent without one. Fitness centers were important to 82 percent of respondents, with 55 percent saying they skip renting in a building that didn’t have such a center.

Finally, a growing number of renters are interested in onsite package lockers for their deliveries, with 57 percent of those surveyed saying this is a feature in which they are either highly interested or interested. The survey found that 47 percent of respondents said they received at least three packages a month.