HomeViews is a ratings and reviews website for residential property in the UK, and the first to harness customer insight in such a way. This makes their data unprecedented in the industry, their recent report focusing on the Build-to-Rent (BTR) sector provides a window into the mind of today’s tenants. But what does it actually tell us?
Before we dive in, it’s important to establish what BTR is. A subset of the private rented sector, it refers exclusively to properties purpose-built for renters. Consequently, BTR buildings are typically owned and managed by one landlord, with an emphasis on building a sense of community through the inclusion of high-quality shared spaces, services and amenities.
For the people who make such places home, HomeView’s data reveals the importance of three things in particular: a 24-hour concierge, communal spaces and fitness facilities.
#1. SERVICE AND SECURITY
According to HomeViews, over a third of reviews for the top-rated schemes specifically mention the concierge.
They even suggest that a lack of one, or one that didn’t work hours convenient to tenants, made some feel unsafe.
The 24-hour concierge at Vertus isn’t just the friendly face at the end of a long day or purely for peace of mind when it comes to your security. Like with a 5-star hotel service, the team are there to assist with all enquiries, receive parcels, as well as a whole host of other responsibilities to maintain the professional running of the building.
Residents can contact them directly at any time, or simply log an issue on the Vertus app. Concierge will liaise with our on-site maintenance team to ensure any minor faults are fixed without inconvenience, and you can even hire help with anything from hanging picture frames to installing a new TV. They also offer cleaning services and easy pick-up and drop-off dry cleaning right from the desk.
“The management team is top-notch, the concierge always on hand to help with anything you may need. There are also frequent resident events, and it makes for such an enjoyable lifestyle. There really is nothing like it.”
10 George Street resident review on HomeViews
#2. COMFORT AND COMMUNITY
Communal spaces pop up time and time again in reviews. For the events they host, the relaxation they offer and the comfortable home-working environments they double up as, they’re sought-after features for those on the hunt for their next home.
Club Vertus is where the social scene of Vertus takes place – work and social spaces designed to let people come together or hideaway for focused work. Spaces such as the Parlour (Club Vertus’ private dining room) can also be booked for everything from family gatherings to inviting private chefs to cook up tasty new dishes using the commercial- standard kitchen facilities.
Club Vertus also plays host to a wide-reaching events programme. For example, at 10 George Street, Wine Wednesdays are run by Humble Grape’s own sommeliers, and resident-led celebrations on the terrace have welcomed live musicians and screenings. Interestingly, only around 50% of BTR schemes offer organised events, and just 30% have roof terraces – both huge factors in tenant satisfaction.
“The ultimate rental experience. You’re made to feel special, even before you move in.”
10 George Street resident review on HomeViews
#3. HEALTHY AND ACTIVE
Wellbeing has hoisted itself high up the list of priorities for those looking to move home, jump workplace, or even book a holiday. So it’s no surprise access to gym facilities consistently makes the headlines when talking tenant happiness. A whopping 28% of reviews for the top ten schemes refer to them in one way or another.
10 George Street has its own fully equipped gym studio managed by Antidote (part of the Health Concierge Group). All of the equipment has been selected to give residents the flexibility to join classes across multiple disciplines and features a bespoke rig, TRXs and two punch bags, as well as Skill Rows, Skill Mills and Technogym bikes.
Newfoundland offers a similar standard of fitness suite, as well as an additional space for yoga, circuits and classes. Anyone renting with Vertus also has exclusive, discounted access to Canary Wharf’s Third Space club, gym and spa.
#4. RENTERS’ MARKET
Nowadays, people want much more from where they rent, and the BTR crowd have shown they won’t be fobbed off with a few gimmicks. Their holy grail is a more complete package that supports the stress-free, wellness-focused lifestyle they aspire to.
Statistics are great, but only show so much. The real value of HomeViews’ data is in the more qualitative findings: people’s honest words. This is nothing short of gold dust to the modern home-hunter after objective insight. It’s a big decision after all. Because where we live today is far more than just a home.