Show Suites for Rental Apartments? Yes.
Why should homebuyers have all the fun? Avenue Living Communities is betting that renters will be just as interested in a show suite displaying a possible new home to its full potential. The company is launching show suites across the Prairies to give its residential rental offerings an added edge.
Mark Nixdorf, Senior Vice President of Residential Operations for Avenue Living, said the company has strategically designated units in buildings as show suites for every one of the company’s 19 markets.
“The show suites are fully furnished, complete with all of our marketing material on the walls, as well as some documents for people to take home. The show suites allow our leasing agents to meet our potential residents, talk about our brand and show them what a unit can look like furnished,” said Nixdorf. “The agents follow up by taking them to the unit they’ve inquired about.”
The show suites offer consumers a tangible idea of a rental unit’s potential as a desirable living space. Geographically, the show suites are positioned so that anywhere someone books an appointment, they’ll be close to potential units that are available to be rented out. “The suites are also fully functional offices for our leasing agents.”
Avenue Living is planning 70 show suites across Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The company owns and operates about 10,000 residential rental units with around 20,000 residents.
“We are taking a phased approach to this. Phase One is now complete with show suites open in Calgary, Edmonton and Saskatoon,” said Nixdorf.
In total, there are 15 in Edmonton, eight in Saskatoon and three in Calgary, with a variety of unit types to represent the company’s portfolio in those areas.
“With Phase One, we’ll learn what goes well and what doesn’t, in terms of the logistics. It’s a fairly big project, not just in terms of the money we’ve allocated, but the impact that COVID-19 had on the project; from the logistics with stores being closed, inventory being in warehouses and inventory not being available,” said Nixdorf.
“After we learn the efficiencies we can gain, then we’ll move to Phase Two, most likely in July, implementing show suites in another group of Avenue Living markets.”
All safety practices and protocols regarding COVID-19 will be in place at the show suites. People will continue to have the option of doing a virtual viewing.