Clean and modern are the two things that landlords need to focus on when they’re trying to boost apartment curb appeal. Flashy advertising, expensive amenities, and open houses every Sunday will not help to improve renter attraction if the community itself is in a poor state of repair. Of course, multifamily community upkeep in California can be a bit of a challenge due to often extreme weather. However, there are some smart choices landlords can make with their landscaping, amenities, and parking lots to minimize those issues.
These upgrades send a subconscious message to prospective renters that the maintenance department cares about the property. That tells them if they rent with that property, their in-unit issues will be handled quickly and efficiently. By focusing on curb appeal, apartment managers ensure they put their best foot forward and instill a sense of community pride in tenants.
Tips for Enhancing Apartment Curb Appeal
Most of the ways to improve apartment curb appeal center on making the most of an existing property, rather than on adding flashy amenities. Landlords can immediately refresh their image simply by focusing on the upkeep of landscaping, parking lots, and community amenities.
#1: Focus on landscaping
It’s not always easy to keep grass green and fresh in California, where droughts are common and there are often restrictions on sprinkler usage. However, there are breeds of grass that hold up to the climate better than others. St. Augustine, Bermuda Grass, and Tall Fescue are just a few breeds that hold water well and stand up to California’s often harsh conditions.
Trees and flower beds also go a long way toward making a space inviting. These simple additions create a sense of hominess and community that can get passersby to stop and take notice. Landlords should consider trees like Jacarandas, Evergreen Pears, Golden Rain Trees, and Crepe Myrtles. And flowers like Poppies, Desert Mallows, Morning Glories, and Daisies will stand the test of time—and of the environment.
#2: Repave parking lots
California is a hub for a lot of great things and also a few not so good natural disasters. Earthquakes are so commonplace that it’s not unusual to have one and immediately forget about it. However, the concrete in the parking lot never forgets. Those little tremors caused by plate shifting can also cause cracks in the parking lot that make a property look unkempt. In some cases, prospective renters may even take it as a sign the foundation of the property is unsafe or unstable.
Repaving and painting parking lots make a property appear well-maintained and safe. It also keeps parking spots well defined, so landlords don’t have to deal with common parking disputes and issues with tenant satisfaction. Repaving is recommended every two to four years for most properties, but areas with a high amount of traffic (or tectonic plate shifts) should consider upping that to once a year.
#3: Maintain community areas
Community areas are usually the first spot in the prospective tenant tour and for good reason. These areas help tenants to decide if this is the type of community they want to be a part of. Keeping common areas in good repair is a vital part of that. Broken tables, missing chairs, faded paint, and empty rooms all give them the impression that amenities aren’t cared for, and they’ll likely be turned off by the property.
A big part of making amenities attractive to viewers is resident use. If prospective renters see current residents happily using the amenities, they’ll be intrigued by the property and its sense of community. Landlords should regularly hold events like pool parties, courtyard movie nights, and happy hours to encourage tenants to enjoy the amenities and advertise their satisfaction.
Getting an Outside Opinion on Curb Appeal
It can be very difficult for someone who spends most of their time in a space to see its flaws. Often, landlords who want to improve their apartment curb appeal should get an outside perspective so they can look at their space through fresh eyes. Overgrown landscaping or peeling paint may have been something they never even noticed otherwise.
It can also help to work with an experienced California multifamily contractor to boost apartment curb appeal. They best understand the demand of tenants as well as what catches their eye when they drive by a property. By working with an expert, landlords will be better prepared to create a community that inspires drop-in visits from prospective renters.