Next-Generation and Smart Home Products: Which are worth the investment?

August 28, 2018 | Blog | Buyers | Sellers

Next-Generation and Smart Home Products: Which are worth the investment?

Learn what smart technology can do for your multifamily property

The multifamily rental landscape is changing, and you must keep up to date. Today’s renters are seeking the latest technology, not just in their smartphones and their cars, but now also in their homes. Designed to make people’s lives easier, smart technology was once considered a luxury but will soon become expected in rental units of all shapes and sizes. Multifamily property owners must stay abreast of new innovations, and decide which next-gen and smart home products are worth the investment.


Smart appliances — like washing machines, refrigerators and dishwashers — connect to your phone or other devices to give more control than ever before. They can send alerts and even be controlled remotely, for example to preheat the oven when you’re on your way home from work. Next-gen appliances can also reduce utility bills, by providing reports with advice on helping them to run more efficiently. Smart appliances typically cost more than standard appliances, but they can make your multifamily property much more attractive to tenants. According to a recent survey, investing in smart appliances is a great way to boost your rental income. 18.2% of respondents said that smart appliances were responsible for bringing in the highest return on investment for their property, when compared to other next-gen features.


Smart thermostats are connected devices that control a home’s heating and/or air conditioning. Users can manually and remotely control the temperature of their home, and the unit can provide alerts and maintenance reminders. Some smart thermostats can even ‘learn’ behavior, knowing when the home is likely to be occupied or unoccupied. Although they do cost more than standard thermostats, installing smart thermostat systems can help your renters reduce their energy consumption, which in turn reduces wear and tear on your HVAC system. By allowing your tenants to enjoy reduced bills they will be more likely to want to stay long-term. Lower utility costs can also make your property more attractive to prospective renters in the future.


Currently, around one-third of multifamily developers, builders and architects are already installing next-gen lighting in their properties. Smart lighting allows renters to remotely turn lights on and off, with color-changing and dimmable options also available to change the atmosphere. Lighting solutions range from smart bulbs, to smart switches, and even smart outlets that provide multiple device charging options. Renters can control their lighting remotely to offer peace of mind when they are away from the home, and they can also enjoy reduced energy consumption. The benefits to multifamily owners are also appealing: next-generation lighting fixtures were ranked second-highest overall among multifamily professionals by return on investment.


Smart locks provide easy keyless entry, with the benefit of improved security for your multifamily unit — something that is very important to your prospective tenants. 61% of today’s renters are likely to rent an apartment specifically because of its electronic access features, and 55% are likely to pay more for an apartment that has “high-tech” door locks, a recent survey reveals. Smart locks are more expensive than regular door locking systems but they offer no-hassle key replacement, so owners can save money there. Multifamily experts believe you can expect to see a return within three years from this type of technology.

The conclusion is clear: installing next-gen and smart technology in your multifamily property will result in higher rents, with an increased return on investment over time. According to the recent survey, over two-thirds of multifamily professionals say they achieve higher rents at least some of the time when renting units with next-gen products. 27% report they achieve higher rents most of the time, while 6.3% say they always get the higher rents. Apartment units with next-gen products help bring in higher rents — 13.8% higher, on average, than typical apartment units.

You can gain the advantage over competitors in the local multifamily market by putting this new technology in place. Multifamily units with next-gen features have the potential to be a smart investment that can pay off for years to come. You can command higher rents, encourage longer-term quality tenancies, and allow your renters to benefit by way of reduced energy bills. The next step is decide which smart features will be worth your investment.

Whether you are looking to buy or sell a multifamily property, the experts at can help. From helping you purchase the ideal multifamily opportunity, to ensuring you receive the best return on investment when it’s time to sell, we will help you attain the long-term success and results you want. Contact us today to learn more.

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