With so many “generations” to deal with such as Baby Boomers, Gen Xers, Gen Y, Millennials, Gen Z, it can be hard to differentiate between most of them. More importantly, it can be hard to know what it is going to take to attract each of them, including the next generation of renters, better known as Gen Z. According to a number of historians, this generation was born in the 1990s, the first generation to grow up in a completely digital world.
With this in mind, here are a few things you should know about Generation Z that might help you make a few necessary changes to ensure you can attract them to your rentals.
Checks Are a Thing of the Past
Not too long ago a survey found that approximately 25% of all millennials had never written a personal check. With this in mind, it seems only fair to follow this path to its logical conclusion. This is that an even smaller percentage of Gen Z will write checks. In fact, few basic checking accounts actually come with checkbooks today, instead, they come armed with debit and credit cards.
To the property manager or landlord, it means making sure your tenants have the ability to pay their rent using an online payment system. At the same time remember Gen Z communicates via text message or email, snail mail is out.
You Must Have an Online Presence
The same survey also found that approximately 75% of Millennials used online rental referral sites in their search for their next rental home. Again, it seems only fair to think that Gen Z renters will follow suit. In fact, we can safely assume that more Gen Z renters will use the web as their primary if not only source of rental information.
It is vital that you take the time and invest in creating a wide-ranging social network and building your presence via social networks like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Make sure you are well-represented in the many review sites and do your best to gather as many positive reviews as you can, but at the same time learn what you can do to handle any negative comments.
Connectivity Is Key
College students and the rest of Gen Z demand 24-hour connectivity to the web for everything from doing their homework to watching videos. They shop online, the date, they chat, they game, and all but live online. They use laptops, tablets, and smartphones, all of which need more than cable internet service, they need bars of connectivity on their phones and lightning fast wireless. If you can advertise the fact you have high-speed cable internet and outstanding cell phone reception, it might just give you the edge against the competition.
Be SMART and Attract Gen Z
According to a study conducted by Wakefield Research, Gen Z wants far more than fast online access for their computers and bars of service for their phones. They also want a slew of the latest smart devices throughout their homes. The list of these appliances includes things like thermostats that can be adjusted from their phones, adjustable lighting, ovens that can be turned on remotely, and so much more. Some want the latest in electronic security systems complete with surveillance cameras that can be accessed remotely and keyless locks.
Why is all of this so important? Because the oldest members of Gen Z are just now starting to come of age and becoming the next generation of renters. If you aren’t ready to meet their needs and desires, you stand to lose out on a large percentage of the up and coming renters.