By David Lindahl

Having nice amenities at your multi-family properties brings customers.  Amenities also make living at your property pleasant and a joy to come home to.  They help with the original leasing and with resident retention. It makes sense to add amenities that are related to the lifestyles of your tenants.  Have little extras that they can appreciate every day.  This will keep their enjoyment of their condo or apartment in their minds at all times.

One idea is to set up home docking stations for electronics in all the units.  This makes the residents’ lives easier.  They have a convenient place to plug in all their personal electronics, such as cell phones and iPods.  It is a great improvement to the apartment or condo.  Yet, it is a relatively inexpensive amenity compared to some others you might add.

Most people these days worry to some extent about identity theft and other forms of fraud.  They want to protect their personal information.  If you make a paper shredder available to residents, you will have an amenity they will all appreciate.  Then, you can recycle the paper to help the environment.  This also goes a long way to impress many residents.

Any amenity that says “This is what our community is all about,” is an amazing tool.  Have a special facility on your property that reflects the interests of the residents.  If your residents are into movies, you could have a theater, for example.  A boxing ring for sports lovers would work well, too.

If you are trying to sell customers on a property some might see as less than perfect, you need to find a way to make your amenities shine.  What may seem like something that is not up to par can be enhanced until it is something extraordinary. Take for example a small swimming pool.  If you jazz it up, it will seem like a special and exotic retreat.  Put some potted plants around it to give it atmosphere.  Do not use the ordinary ho-hum pool furniture. Make it something special that gives the pool the ambiance of a sidewalk café in Italy.  Give the area around the pool an environment suited to social mingling.  You can make the pool a central hub of activity in your community.

Making payments is one concern of all apartment and condo owners.  They need to have a method to make their lives easier when it comes to financial concerns.  Most properties accept Visa and MasterCard.  However, many people have American Express. These people consider it a very helpful amenity if you accept American Express.  Condo buyers can even put their down payment on this card.  They may have a chance to earn points on the card to get a fantastic reward, such as plane tickets for a vacation.

Change your property in a big way, or change it in a minor way.  As long as the effect is spectacular, the cost will not matter.  What does matter is how your residents and prospective residents respond to the amenities you offer them.