“Owners taking advantage of this aren’t taking advantage of their residents—they are taking things off of their residents’ plate.”
In this episode of the Multifamily Leaders Podcast, Mindy Price chats with Todd Thorpe about his insights as a leader in the PropTech industry. Todd recalls the days when hotels would advertise free HBO or free cable TV as a way to attract guests; nowadays, technology such as dependable Wi-Fi and smart home features are what residents expect and rely on. With Wi-Fi having become the most important utility, it is vital for industry leaders to be proactive and stay up to date with evolving technologies through research, attending trade shows, and joining associations such as the NAA.
When it comes to the future of new construction and value-added properties, in particular, Todd notes that people can get paralyzed by new technology. But he emphasizes that the worst thing you can do is not to act, because it is not a matter of IF but WHEN your competitors adopt these new advancements. The pandemic changed our need for strong, widespread Wi-Fi, and property-wide Wi-Fi options are becoming more common—and more attractive to prospective residents. By planning ahead and engaging with strong partners, you can ensure that you are doing your best to provide your residents with technological amenities that enhance their experience.
Mindy and Todd close their conversation by highlighting how all of these technological advancements can impact your bottom line. You will have to monetize these improvements through tech fees or as part of the rent payment, but you must do so in a way that residents will pay less and have a better experience than if they had gone out and acquired the tech on their own. By doing this, owners are not taking advantage of their residents but are adding convenience through amenities that will, in turn, help to increase satisfaction and renewals