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COVID Changing Renters Needs

Now more than ever our homes have become a top priority as the pandemic has shifted our day to day life in every aspect. Our homes have become office spaces, classrooms, workout studios, restaurants and more. And as COVID-19 has proven how folks are fully capable of working remotely, the work from home trend is expected to hold strong and consequently, will continue to shift home design trends for the remainder of 2020 and into the new year.

Well-designed living areas, outdoor areas, and designated spaces are at the top of everyone’s list as people are spending more time at home. With this in mind, here are three things remote workers are looking for in their rental properties.

Designated Spaces

As schools, offices, and gyms have all closed their doors, having spaces for these in our homes have become the top item on peoples wish-lists. The open floor plan of the past is no more, as renters are looking for designated, and flexible spaces within their homes. Extra bedrooms that double as a home office, finished basements for a home gym and space for the kids to hunker down and do their schoolwork. Specifically advertising these areas in your listing can help draw in more prospective tenants.

Additionally, outdoor living areas and backyards have become more sought after and something to still consider when looking for your next rental property even in the winter months. More renters are leaving their current homes for properties with more outdoor spaces.


The lure of rental properties surrounded by bars, restaurants and shopping areas in larger cities is now being outweighed by homes in smaller cities with more space. According to the National Association of Realtors Research Group’s November Report, rents declined in the larger city of Dallas, while being up in Waco and Arlington, Texas. Additionally, rents declined in Los Angeles, while they rose in Bakersfield.  Smaller cities are seeing more surges as folks are flooding out of the crowded major cities.

Pet Friendly

Pet adoptions since March have surged as people are spending more time at home, and have taken the next step into pet ownership. Rental units and landlords who are more flexible about allowing cats and dogs will see more tenant applications than those who do not allow pets into their rental properties.  Plus, you can make more money by adding in a pet-rent fee or non-refundable security deposit upfront as well.

Overall, as flipping properties has decreased since March, rental units are being sought after by real estate investors. The National Association of Realtors Research Group’s November Report shows that the median apartment rent rose 12 percent in Q3 of 2020, and though some areas are showing signs of occupancy lose average rents have remained stable. When looking for your next rental property or renovating a current one, keep in mind how folks are spending more time at home and are looking for specific needs.