Renovations to Consider for Micro or Small Apartments

Ben Jacobsen/Northeast Collaborative Architects

Ben Jacobsen/Northeast Collaborative Architects

Often times, apartments in metro areas may be a little more compact than suburban options. Location, location, location right? Just because your units may be small in square footage doesn’t mean that they can’t have mass appeal. With a little creativity, you can optimize the space so your residents can still have everything they desire. Here are some suggestions for renovations you can make to maximize the space available and help keep your property at max capacity.

Multi-Purpose Uses

When you’re living in a small space, often rooms take on multiple purposes. Something you can do to maximize the space is offer flexible design elements like a rolling kitchen island or dining table or a murphy bed. By utilizing these options, tenants can turn the kitchen island into a work area when the bed is put away or use it for other uses. The key is to create a space that is flexible and easy to adjust based on your tenant’s needs at the time.

Smart Storage Options

Storage options can be really tricky when you’re upgrading a small space. This is often a major concern for people when it comes to a small space. When thinking about upgrades that will appeal to tenants, consider smart storage options like built-in shelving and cabinets. By showing them the options that have been built-in, you will be able to help them visualize where they could keep all of their belongings.

Another option to consider for your property is offering communal options like a storage room or bike room. These are other features that will immediately relieve any stress over not having enough room for belongings.

Compact Appliances

Compact appliances can be a great way to maximize the kitchen space available. By cutting down on full size refrigerators or ovens, you may also be able to upgrade the spaces to include modern amenities like dishwashers that are more standard in suburban rentals. Another great option is designing a kitchen space with a built-in microwave. In small kitchens, finding space for a microwave can be tricky since countertop space is often small and you also don’t want to block off one of the few cabinets.

Smart Privacy Options

Another way to maximize space for smaller units is by integrating features like pocket doors into rooms. This can help provide privacy options in between rooms without taking up precious space or worrying about a door blocking part of the room.

More than anything, the thing to keep in mind when it comes to upgrading small rental units is to do so thoughtfully. By creating a space that serves the needs of your tenants plus provides upgraded amenities not only will you have better luck filling vacancies at your property but your tenants will also be more likely to continue to rent with you. If you need help remodeling or making the most out of your units contact us today!

Design Trends You Need in Your Multifamily Property

Source: Elle Decor

Source: Elle Decor

While having your updates and renovations be cost effective is always a priority, you also want them to stand out from the competition to draw in prospective tenants. By incorporating new design trends into your units you will be able to catch the eye of tenants and create a timeline look for years to come. Here are a few of our favorite design trends to incorporate into your multifamily property:

Dark Cabinets

While the majority of properties keep their cabinetry some sort of wood finish, you can stand out from the competition by incorporating darker cabinets. We would suggest something like a navy or charcoal black cabinet. This will give your units a sleek, modern feel helping to increase the value add and rental prices for each of your units.

Two-Toned Cabinets

Another option you can try with cabinets is a two-toned look. Not only is it on-trend but it also adds dimension, giving your kitchen an elevated, modern appeal that others in the area may not have. We recommend going with darker cabinets on the bottom and white or a lighter color on the top. The different colors will create a strong visual contrast to make your property’s kitchens pop!

Pendant Lighting

While lighting might seem like a minor detail, it can really pull a space together. Strategically placed pendant lighting over a breakfast bar, kitchen island, or dining room table can be a great way to add a unique touch to your units. There are plenty of options choose from meaning you can find just about anything to work for your property.

Dark Walnut Colored Floors

Replacing carpets between residents can become rather costly over time. Opting for a wood laminate plank or a luxury vinyl can give you the same feel of hardwoods for a fraction of the cost helping you avoid the continued cost of replacing carpet. We love a dark walnut color for an instant luxurious feel in your units. The darker floors will contrast nicely with traditionally lighter colored walls or even a colorful accent wall if you opt for that. Future residents will happily pay a premium for the elevated look of hardwood floors.

Shaker-Style Cabinets

Clean, minimalist design isn’t going away any time soon if you ask us! If you’re doing upgrades to your unit kitchens, consider using shaker-style cabinets. These provide clean, modern lines future residents will love. Plus, you can get them in a variety of colors to suit your property’s style.

Waterfall Edge for Counters

If any of your units have a peninsula or island in the kitchen, you should consider upgrading the countertops to have a waterfall edge. The feature has been featured in upscale properties across the country and will definitely help you attract a higher rent per unit.

Out-of-the-Box Backsplash

It’s easy to install standard backsplash in your units but that doesn’t do much to help make your property memorable or modern for residents. You don’t have to go crazy but trying something with a geometric pattern will combine a graphic interest with a classic outline making your property stand out from the rest.

As you can see, there are several trends you can incorporate into your property to help give an updated, modern look to your units. While some may have a larger upfront cost, they will all help attract a premium rent boosting your bottom line. Interested in including any of these trends in your renovations? Contact us today!

Part II: 3 Tips for Completing Your Multifamily Property's Rebrand

In Part I of this blog series, we addressed some of the signs that you might want to consider rebranding you new multifamily property including:

  • Your multifamily property currently doesn't have an identity
  • You want to improve the previous poor reputation
  • You are planning on renovating or adding amenities to your property
  • Your revenue isn’t where you want it to be and you want to attract a higher price point
  • You’re losing tenants to nearby competition

Now that you’ve decided it’s time to rebrand, we’re sharing our top tips to make your property image overhaul a smooth and successful process.

Know your community’s strengths and define your target market

Your community’s strengths are essentially what makes your property unique compared to your competition. Maybe your property has a perfect location or you offer amenities that other nearby properties do not. Whatever it is, knowing your property’s unique value proposition is paramount when it comes to rebranding and appealing to your target market.

Similarly, you’ll want to consider who you are targeting with your new property image. Young professionals? Families? Students? By defining your market, you can build your new brand with this audience in mind. Not only will this help with your new marketing plan but this will also help when it comes to renovations.

Cosmetic repairs are important in rebranding your multifamily property

Most rebranding projects also include some renovations. This will ultimately help attract more future tenants in renting out units of your multifamily property. To evaluate where your property needs the most updating, take a quick scan and evaluate what your target market values most. This will help guide your renovations. Typical renovations that are included in an image overhaul include:

  • Paint schemes (interior and exterior)
  • Clubhouses
  • Outdoor living space
  • Leasing center
  • Fitness center
  • Model units
  • Common areas
  • Business centers

Don’t forget your landscaping. While repainting the exterior of the property improves the overall impression of the property, you should never overlook your landscaping. Pair a freshly manicured lawn and beautiful landscaping with a new coat of exterior paint and your property will certainly stand out to future residents.

Hire experts to set your new brand up for success

There are a lot of moving pieces when it comes to an image overhaul so bringing on help to handle each of these pieces will not only alleviate some stress but also help set your new brand up for success. You’ll want to consider hiring:

  • A graphic designer to help with your new logo and marketing materials
  • A copywriter for your marketing materials and website copy
  • A photographer to take quality photos to show off all the new improvements you’ve made to the property
  • A design renovation firm to help coordinate all the renovations that need to be done

Hiring these professionals can help with some of the heavy lifting so that you can focus on getting the best ROI for your property.

If you’re looking for help with your property image overhaul, contact us today!

4 Things to Consider When Choosing a Design Renovation Firm

Renovating or rebranding can be a major undertaking but hiring a design renovation firm can make the process much easier. They can help by taking the lead on the project, managing the logistics and coming to you only when they need feedback or final decisions on the design and other details. Not only will they handle creating the design for you, but they’ll also help with the coordination of contractors and vendors and keeping the project on time and on budget. Everything you need to make sure your renovation runs smoothly! But not all design renovation firms are created equal.

Here are a few things you’ll want to consider when it comes to choose the design renovation firm you hire:

Their Design Style

Every designer has a different design style so you want to make sure you find a firm that either matches your style or matches the vision you have for your property. Their portfolio will highlight the past work they’ve done so you can see what their style is and if it fits with your overall vision for your property.

The next step you’d take is having a conversation with potential firms. This is your opportunity to share what you are looking for and then you’ll be able to see if they’re a good fit. Do you mesh well with their team? Do they understand your vision? This conversation will give you a really good idea if they’re the right fit for your property.

Their Capabilities/Role

So you know their design style matches what you’re looking for, but do they offer the services you need? When it comes to renovations for a multifamily property, there are a multitude of projects that can be done. Some properties just need a fresh coat of exterior paint while some need staging for a model unit and others need a full renovation of the rental units. Most firms will offer all of these but make sure they actually have experience with each facet of your renovation.

Connections with Contractors and Vendors

One of the biggest benefits of hiring a design renovation firm is their connections. Design renovation firms often have a list of trusted contractors and vendors they work with on a regular basis. We suggest asking about the contractors and vendors they work with in your area. This way you can start to get a better idea of how this process will work and you can do a little research into these connections prior to hiring a firm. This way you can ensure that your property is in the best hands possible throughout the entire renovation process.

References

Always ask for references. Their portfolio should not be enough in selling you on any given firm. Their work may be beautiful but it may be very difficult to work with him or they may have gone over the timeline, etc. Digging into references can help offset any of these concerns. You can ask for references from past properties and/or contractors or vendors to get a well-rounded idea of what it would be like to work with that firm.

And there you have it! Four things to consider in your search for a renovation design firm for your multifamily property. Taking your time to vet prospective firms and building a trusting relationship will help ensure a successful renovation process for your property.

Looking for some assistance with your renovations? Contact us today to learn more.