When it comes to renting out apartments, some property managers tend to avoid families with children—mostly because they want to avoid the damage tiny humans can cause in the rented units or simply because they don’t want to deal with the nuisance that comes with having kids living in the community.
However, according to the Federal Housing Act, it is illegal to discriminate against applicants with children, so landlords have found creative ways to accommodate families and their needs. Most residents with children are usually well into their careers, which makes them more financially stable. In addition to that, the number of renting families is projected to grow through the end of this decade, due to more Millennials having children and increasing costs of housing coupled with falling homeownership rates.
While single-family homes with backyards and multiple bedrooms and bathrooms are ideal, there are things property managers can do to improve these rentals at a lower cost than rebuilding and altering structures.
So, if you want to attract and keep these types of tenants, follow the tips below to make your multifamily community more welcoming and kid-friendly:
MARKET THE PROPERTY ACCORDINGLY
When rolling out your apartment marketing strategy, it is important to highlight that the multifamily community is well-suited for families. Try to provide complex marketing materials that include the property’s family-friendly features, as well as pictures of every room. If your community includes an indoor or outdoor playground, you should mention that in the ad as well. Don’t just stick to online marketing, but print some flyers and distribute them at libraries, community centers and daycares, in bulletin boards at local schools, or even at grocery stores.
SPOTLIGHT ON NEIGHBORHOOD AMENITIES
When opting for a place to live, parents will take into account multiple child-friendly elements. One of them is the quality of local kindergartens or schools. So, if your rental is situated in a good school district, you should definitely emphasize this. Mentioning neighborhood amenities (and the property’s distance to these) might also come in handy. Be sure to provide information about nearby parks, playgrounds, sports centers, but also essentials such as grocery stores, hospitals and pharmacies. Help prospects visualize themselves and the things they can do together in the area by providing details about family-friendly recreational areas such as walking or biking paths.
SAFETY AND SECURITY FIRST
No matter the age of their children, parents want to know their home is safe, inside and outside. In order to minimize accidents, the interior could feature furniture with soft edges, anti-tip kits, washable interior paints, retractable baby gates, as well as fire and carbon monoxide detectors. Outlets should be covered with plugs, and all doors should have locks. Outdoor spaces could include fenced areas, fenced balconies or patios, as well as off-street parking. Also, if your community has a pool, you should take into consideration a child-proof gate.
Parents are always looking to engage their children in fun activities close to home, so that aspect alone could make you stand out from the competition! Not only do community events entertain children, but they also provide a great way for parents to interact and socialize with other adults in the area. You can go big and bold with a pumpkin decoration contest or a colorful Halloween activity, carnivals or themed parties, or keep it cozy with the occasional movie night—and be sure to follow the required sanitation and distancing rules to keep everybody safe.
The more family members, the more space they will need to store their stuff. In order to accommodate this need, make sure there is plenty of storage space for clothes and toys, books and supplies. Some of these storage spaces should be located in areas with limited access for children.
WELCOME FURRY FRIENDS
Having children and pets around might seem like quite the risk, but it’s something landlords should take into consideration. Nowadays, many families are choosing the companionship of a furry friend, so pet-friendly rentals have a higher chance of attracting residents. Even if a family doesn’t have a pet yet, things can change in the future, so let prospective renting families know their fuzzy sidekicks are welcome!