What’s More Important – Material or Social Upgrades?

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by Stuart Platt.


Imagine¬†you live in an apartment (and maybe you do)¬†and your lease is about up.¬† The apartment Manager tells you, “If you renew your lease, I can provide the following things for you, but you have to choose either¬†list A or B – You can’t have both”.¬† Which would you choose?:

List A – Material

  • Upgraded kitchen countertop.
  • Above-counter lighting.
  • Professionally steam clean¬†your carpet.

List B – Social

  • Regularly themed resident appreciation parties and events.
  • Promotional give-aways, drawings¬†or contests.
  • Community retail discount programs.

Now¬†ask the same¬†question from the perspective of the apartment Manager or Owner.¬† Let’s assume the expense to the community will be the same regardless of which list is picked.¬† Did your answer change or stay the same?

Lastly, ask yourself the same question from the Manager’s point of view, guessing what the majority of your tenants might pick.¬† Would they lean for the material upgrades or go for the social perks?¬† Your mind is likely spinning because of all the new variables to consider now.¬†¬†How¬†might the social-economic demographics affect your answer (age, income, location, etc.)?

And now the most important question of all, (assuming you can’t have it ALL) do you currently feel¬†your property¬†focuses on¬†the¬†most appropriate¬†types of upgrades and amenities to best match your tenants?¬† What would you change?


  • 1
    Lisa Torkkola
    July 6, 2011 - 9:46 AM | Permalink

    What about Security Systems breakin’s are on the rise does anyone care about their safety?

  • 2
    July 25, 2011 - 12:19 PM | Permalink

    That’s a Great Call! I believe this should be at the top of the list of concerns for all property manager’s and owners.

    First, one should look at the basics such as lighting and area surveillance. However, adding a security system per unit would certainly be a nice add on feature that may even get the renter a discount on their insurance.

    I would also say, that a complex could also add their version of “Block Watch” so everyone is watching out for eachother.

    Other ideas?

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