In Los Angeles, the multifamily rental market can be ruthless. LA is something of an anomaly when compared to the rest of the country—despite a major increase in multifamily construction, the market remains competitive, with vacancy rates as high as 96.3%, and an expected 6% rise in rent over the coming year. It’s one of the only places where increased construction hasn’t slowed market growth, and because of that, multifamily property owners who want to stay in the game have to come up with some deliberately creative ways to separate themselves from the pack.
One way that many have done this is by gearing the renovations they make to their properties toward young families. According to a Harvard study that analyzed trends in the country’s housing market, the number of renters with children has grown by 2.2 million in the past decade. That’s a sizeable jump, and it’s one that makes the family demographic one worth tapping into.
Redesigning Your Property’s Pool Space to Target Growing Families
There are lots of ways to do this, but in a sun-soaked city like Los Angeles, one foolproof way is to plan some major upgrades to your property’s pool area. Think about redesigning the space completely and adding a bevy of new features to increase the appeal for folks with families. Here are some of our favorite outdoor upgrades, and some tips on how you can make similar improvements to your own multifamily property:
- Add modern, well-designed seating areas. Lots of them! Couches that have clean lines and brightly-colored pillows give the space an organized, contemporary feel. Even the hot tub can be surrounded by seating to help turn the space into a place of leisure and luxury. You’ll also want these seating areas to be as diverse as possible, running the gamut from poolside lounge chaises all the way to cabanas covered in drapery panels.
- Add a fire pit. And not just any fire pit will do—you’ll want to choose one that’s both practical and easy on the eyes, one that invites your tenants to congregate around it. To create this community space in your own building, you might opt for a square shape set into a circular wooden platform, rounded out with more comfy but clean-lined couches and chairs. To further add to the space’s versatility, you can add some homier touches: brightly-colored garden chairs and backyard string lighting overhead. It’s an aesthetic that oscillates between minimalist’s dream and fairy garden, and it diversifies the space, giving it a kind of “something for everyone” feel.
- Add a state-of-the-art outdoor kitchen area. If you build it, they will barbeque. Having an outdoor kitchen area really ups the ante on how “finished” your pool area feels, and it also gives you a chance to add in some culinary design finishes to round out the space. Think granite countertops, a sleek and modern barbeque set-up, and maybe even an outdoor mini-fridge or two. Pro-tip: if you have the space, make sure to build more than one barbeque! There’s nothing worse than planning an outdoor bbq and then realizing the day of your event that there aren’t enough to go around. Having more than one helps families feel like you’ve got them covered.
- Renovate the pool itself. If your pool’s seen one too many summers, giving the adjacent area a makeover could be like putting lipstick on a potbelly pig (no offense, potbellies). Have the plaster resurfaced, and then think about adding an upgrade finish, or even adding or replacing an existing deck. Both of these options can go a long way towards making your pool look as good as the day it was built (or better, if its design was dated).
Planning for Renovation: Some Tips to Keep in Mind
So that’s the what—now to tackle the how. There are lots of things you’ll want to take into consideration when you’re making these upgrades, so here are a few rules of thumb for you to keep in mind:
- Don’t cut corners when it comes to design. Nuance is key here. Your aesthetic should be modern but livable; it shouldn’t feel decadent or over-the-top. For example, if you invest in patio furniture that’s so delicate it looks like it might be broken just by sitting on it, that’s a surefire way to turn parents away. Like their homes, families need their outdoor spaces to be functional.
- Try to minimize the disturbance to current tenants during renovations. You don’t want to turn current tenants away in your effort to bring new tenants in, so make sure you do everything you can to make renovations with as little inconvenience to them as possible. That means making sure there’s no construction in the evening, and, if possible, none in the early morning, either.
- Design your space with safety in mind. Because drowning is the leading cause of death among one- to four-year-old children, this is probably the most important consideration you’ll make. Obviously, you’ll want to make sure your pool is up to code, but you should also think seriously about installing a gate or lockable pool cover that you can close when pool hours are over. This will help keep kids safe and swimming.
Let REIG Do the Hard Work
Upgrading the pool area at your multifamily won’t just bring in more family-oriented tenants, it’ll make it more likely that those tenants turn into long-term residents, and it’ll increase the value of your property to boot. At REIG, our team of professionals can help you design a comprehensive, on-trend upgrade that will distinguish your property from the rest and which is sure to win over even the pickiest of potential new tenants. Reach out to us today to find out how.