For many renters, location and budget are two critical factors in deciding on a home to rent. After all, we want to be close to our jobs, as well as the activities we enjoy in our down time. Yet, landlords also use apartment amenities of their property to sway potential renters. These renters may observe resort style amenities and be initially swayed by them. But before pulling the trigger, it is important to factor in the following items.
- Usage – While an amenity, such as fitness center or spa, might be appealing, ask yourself realistically how often you would be able to take advantage of them. Perhaps you are not a fitness buff or your schedule and budget simply do not allow for long spa days on the weekend. If you are not likely to use them, then they should not be factored into your decision.
- Upkeep – Ask any current residents if they have observed a regular maintenance schedule for items such as dog parks and walking trails. If the staff are not taking the time to care for these items, then this might be an indication of a lack of maintenance in other areas. As a result, it could be a red flag against the property. Observe the condition of fitness equipment. If it is older, does it appear to be well kept or is it showing obvious signs of wear? If possible, ask current residents if areas are chronically out of order. Again, these are signs that maintenance on the property overall might be lacking.
- Costs – While a majority of apartment amenities are available to residents as part of their rent, there are others that might require additional funds to use them. For example, a fitness center might offer classes in Zumba or another activity. However, these classes may come with a fee to attend and might be open to members of the public in addition to residents. So if you are planning to make use of these classes, be sure you know about the potential costs prior to signing up. Resort fees may also be added to the rent regardless of your amenity use, so be sure you understand what these fees are for prior to executing your lease.
- Public Access – For many residents, it is a draw to have apartment amenities kept solely for the use of paying tenants. However, a landlord may opt to open certain facilities, such as fitness centers or walking trails, to the public. Therefore, you may find some apartment amenities involve longer waits to gain access. Be sure to confirm the rules of use and if residents have first access.
Apartment amenities might be convenient to the residents, but only if they are well maintained
Amenities are definitely a draw, particularly in larger complexes that can support a variety of activities, both indoor and outdoor. Still, it is important to understand what is provided with the amenities, both the maintenance and the potential costs, prior to executing any lease at a complex.