A new group is making their entrance into the housing market. Generation Z – those born between 1995 and 2010 – comprises 21 percent of the American population (totaling 66.3 million people). They are beginning to enter the housing market as renters, and here are some of the amenities they are looking for in their first homes.
Most of Gen Z has never known a world without the internet and pervasive technology. Not just tech savvy, they are tech dependent. This shapes their housing needs in two key ways.
Firstly, they prefer to handle administrative procedures over the internet. An app or a secure online platform through which to view the property, access the lease, pay rent, and even report damage or request repairs are bound to appeal to them.
Secondly, Gen Z loves homes with smart devices and universal connectivity features. However, their access to technology is limited by cost as many have only just entered the workforce. Units and complexes that bridge the connectivity gap for them through universal Wi-Fi have very strong appeal. Smart devices and voice-activated controls for light fixtures are increasingly common and very popular.
Gen Z loves to have access to a very eclectic range of amenities. This can vary from bike repair and tire inflation stations to dog walking services and communal spaces for gatherings. Some newer complexes are even including access to on-site holistic treatments like massage to attract new tenants.
Research also shows that Gen Z is much more comfortable with sharing their home with a roommate if they like the housing complex. Home layouts that feature shared spaces for in-home interaction and socializing are proving to be a hit.
On a broader scale, proximity to recreational as well as arts and entertainment outlets attracts all the right attention.
Gen Z is also known for its idealism and activism. Conservation of energy and water ranks high on their list of concerns – the vast majority will give up other amenities if they can contribute to a greener world.
They are big fans of homes with smart appliances that adapt to their lifestyles to reduce wasteful expenditure of power and water. This can include devices like motion-sensitive lights, green-certified showers and faucets, and even composting facilities.
Locations near cycling paths, charging stations for electric vehicles, and easy access to public transport already see very high demand, and this trend will only grow in the future.
A Final Push
Furnished and semi-furnished homes complement Gen Z’s tendency to “travel light” perfectly; a move-in-ready home is likely to be snapped up very quickly.
Many landlords have also discovered that the standard 12-month lease that is universally popular with all other demographics isn’t so with Gen Z. They prefer shorter 6-month and 9-month options. Advertising this feature can help convince undecided young renters to sign on the dotted line.