These days it seems most property managers are going all-in trying to target younger renters. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. After all, Millennials are now officially the largest living generation. But by focusing entirely on these up-and-comers, many property managers are missing out on a highly profitable market segment. In fact, with rental demand continuing to rise among those aged 55 and older, there’s tremendous opportunity in targeting this demographic. How can you get a piece of the pie and appeal to senior renters? Here are a few tips and pointers to keep in mind.
Many seniors are still very active and perfectly capable of getting around just as they did when they were younger, but others may have greater difficulty. Similarly, even those who don’t currently need any special accommodations may experience a change in circumstances over the coming years.
As such, older renters tend to look for properties that feature easy accessibility, such as those with units on the first floor, level walkways, closer parking, ramps and wider doorways that are capable of accommodating a wheel chair. Investing in these things now can help you attract older renters and may also improve retention down the road.
Another thing that 55+ renters tend to appreciate when choosing a rental property is rent that is inclusive of all the utilities, such as heat, hot water, electricity, gas, cable, internet, etc. Not only is this more convenient, but it’s especially helpful to older individuals who may have lost a spouse and find managing the budget alone challenging. Savvy property managers can roll all of these things into one price to give prospective renters one less thing to worry about.
Room for Guests
Many seniors choose to rent because they’re tired of all the hassle that comes with owning and maintaining their own home. But downsizing to a rental property can be a difficult transition. Finding properties that offer enough additional space to accommodate guests, such as visiting children and grandchildren, can be just the happy medium this demographic is looking for. If you have properties that feature a second or third bedroom, for example, you may be able to market that to older renters.
Seniors who have owned a home in the past are often already accustomed to living with certain high-end finishes. As such, they tend to look for rental properties that feature the same level of quality. In particular, bathrooms and kitchens that have a high-quality look and feel may be attractive to the older generation of renters. Things like marble countertops and high-end appliances may be an investment now, but if it helps you land and keep great older tenants, it will be well worth it in the long run.
As people age, they become more susceptible to things like slips and falls. They can also become more vulnerable to criminals. Having a home environment that features certain safety precautions can help prevent these incidents. For instance, motion sensors with high quality lighting, security cameras and carpeting or non-slip flooring can keep residents safe and healthy while also helping property managers make their units more attractive to the older demographic in the process.
With the senior rental population at an all-time high, it’s never been a better time for property managers to target this generation. The five tips above should help you reach, attract and appeal to these older renters and improve retention rates at the same time.