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Renters Return to Snag Concessions, Majority Remain in Same Area


Renters Return to Snag Concessions, Majority Remain in Same Area

December 9, 2020
Two girls moving into apartment
Photo: zinkevych

Many young renters are bidding farewell to their parents’ homes and reentering the rental market, says Zillow. Once the pandemic began to alter Americans’ lifestyles, 34% of Gen Z renters opted to escape their apartments and return home to live with family members. What Zillow’s survey of renters found was that renters moved mainly due to wanting more indoor space or they found a better deal on rent. Yet, 51% of respondents said they are paying more in rent now than in a previous rental, suggesting that renters are upgrading their abodes at a time where more concessions are offered.

Three quarters (75%) of those renters that moved and are now paying less than before said finding a better deal on rent was a reason for their move, which makes some intuitive sense. But among renters paying more than before, close to half (44%) said that finding a better deal on rent was a reason they moved — they may be spending more, but clearly some may feel like they’re getting more for their dollar. 

Compared to their older peers, younger renters were more likely to say that amenities including smart home capabilities, in-unit laundry and rooftop decks or gardens are all very or extremely important. As these younger renters continue to return to the housing market, landlords may want to consider adding these amenities instead of lowering rent. Offering concessions — sweeteners including free or discounted rent, parking and/or fees — could also be an effective alternative to rent reductions: Almost half (49%) of Gen Z renters that moved recently said they were motivated to do so because their new rental offered promotions or concessions.

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