Market Outlook

Is Proximity to Retail Becoming Less Important to Renters?

January 8, 2018

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Does Proximity To Retail Matter To Renters?

With Amazon continuing to grow and nearly everything deliverable to your front door, proximity to retail might become less and less of a draw for potential renters. Take into account that many malls and once-unshakable franchises across the country are closing, and the role of brick-and-mortar stores in relation to property management certainly deserves another look. Here are some things to keep in mind when gauging how this growing phenomenon might affect your property moving forward.

Attractiveness of nearby retail depends on the area and the stores themselves.

In urban areas that offer a multitude of delivery services ranging from GoPuff to UberEATS, it’s hard to think of anything that can’t be delivered to your door in a timely fashion. Amazon now even offers a service that delivers goods inside your home. For less populated areas in the suburbs or farther, delivery services are going to more sporadic, if offered at all; proximity to retail is more likely to be a selling point for a rental property in such areas. Another aspect to keep in mind is the stores themselves: are they franchises that can be found in almost every neighborhood in the area, or are they independent businesses that offer charm and personality to the area? As we’ve discussed before, advertising unique locations and stores near your property can be a key to convincing prospective tenants that your neighborhood is the one to be living in.

Proximity to public transportation, parks, and schools is more likely to remain important for renters.

Even as proximity to retail becomes less important for renters, location is still a critical factor. Urban population growth is slowing down in America, but it is still growing, and as Americans continue to move to urban areas and exacerbate existing traffic issues, public transportation will look like an increasingly attractive transportation option for city dwellers. While you should certainly mention proximity to retail and other amenities to potential renters, proximity to bus and train stops are a surefire way to attract serious attention and should be a key selling point in your property listings and showings.

Proximity to local parks and schools is equally as important, especially for renting families with children. Even if there aren’t any exciting retail attractions nearby to entice renters, be sure to mention information about the local school district and recreational areas in your listings.

Emphasize nearby attractions (eateries, pubs, etc.) that you can’t get delivered to your door.

Although just about any retail item can get delivered to your door nowadays, that isn’t the case for all things consumable. Certain restaurants, an indie movie theater, or that neighborhood watering hole with the fun table games aren’t things that you can ship to your doorstep. Identifying these sorts of businesses and attractions and capitalizing on them is a quick, easy, and efficient way to make sure your property listings are the best they can be. The importance of proximity to retail might be in flux, but proximity to parks and schools are still a safe bet to advertise your property on.

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