Should You Add a Dog Park to Your Apartment Complex?
Do you own a rental community or apartment complex? If so, you’re probably constantly trying to think of ways to improve it and make it more attractive and appealing to potential renters. By working to make your property a desirable place to live, people will be more likely to rent from you and will be more pleased with their experience. This means they will be more likely to renew their lease year after year.
How, then, do you go about improving your rental community to entice more renters? There are plenty of things to do. Some apartment complexes add a playground. Others add a pool or maybe ensure there are plenty of parking spots. One of the latest and greatest additions that apartment owners are adding to their complexes, however, is a dog park.
While this might not be the first improvement that comes to your mind when you think of ways to spruce up your rental community, there are plenty of perks that make it worth considering. Here’s why.
How Do Dog Parks Attract Renters?
The simple fact is that renters love amenities. Whether it’s a pool, a gym or, in this case, a dog park, it makes your apartment complex look that much more appealing. Additionally, if you have these amenities while the apartment complex down the road doesn’t, this might give you the edge you need to come out on top in potential renters’ minds as they make their decisions about where to rent.
But while all amenities are positive and have great potential to boost your desirability as an apartment complex, there’s something in particular about a dog park that strikes a unique chord with renters.
Did you know that over one-third of all U.S. households have at least one dog? This translates into huge numbers of people and their dogs who are looking for safe place to get outside and play. Of course, regular parks are one option. Backyards are another.
However, consider that most people who rent apartments or other spaces will not have a backyard. Even if they do, it’s likely to be shared with all of their fellow renters. A traditional park might require a lengthy car ride, making it impractical for when the dog just needs to get out and play for a few minutes to burn off some energy.
By adding a dog park to your apartment complex, you’re spending a very specific message to potential renters. You’re telling them that you care about them and their pets so much that you’re willing to go above and beyond the basic necessities of an apartment complex. You also care about the extra things in life, such as a person’s pets.
It’s these amenities and these types of messages that will set you apart from your competitors and make people want to choose your rental spaces.
Do Dog Parks Add Property Value?
We’ve discussed how installing a dog park is valuable in terms of attracting tenants and renters. But is there a correlation between dog parks and property value? Does adding a dog park actually increase your property value?
The answer is yes, it does. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, either. The more amenities and bonus features you add to a piece of property, the more it becomes worth. This makes sense. For example, a space with a large yard will be worth more than one with no yard. A house with all modern and updated appliances will be worth more than a house with outdated ones. By extension, then, we can see that a property with a dog park will be worth more than a property without one.
This means even though it will cost a bit of money up front to add a dog park to your apartment complex, you’ll begin reaping the benefits before long. Not only will it entice more renters to sign a lease, but it also means that if you ever decide to sell, you’ll be able to price your apartment complex at a much higher level because it has the added feature of the park.
Benefits of Dog Parks
Based on all of this information, it’s not hard to see and understand how adding a dog park is good for you as the apartment complex owner. It entices renters to join your rental community. It encourages them to stay longer. It gives you an edge over your competition, and it even increases the sale value of your apartment complex.
But what about your renters? How can adding a dog park benefit your renters and their four-legged friends? As it turns out, there are all kinds of benefits for them:
1. Great Socializing Spaces
Everyone enjoys living in a community of friendly and familiar faces. However, it can be difficult to get to know your neighbors in many apartment complexes, especially since not everyone is comfortable going door to door and introducing themselves. Dog parks make a great place to socialize and get to know the other dog-owners in the complex. By providing spaces for your tenants to interact and get acquainted with one another, you increase the likelihood that they begin to see your apartment complex as home and as a place they’d like to keep living.
On the flip side of this, imagine a tenant who lives alone in an apartment and never interacts with any of the neighbors. This tenant will be less likely to develop roots and connections in the apartment complex and perhaps more likely to move away.
Any socializing space is a positive thing in your apartment complex, but a dog park is a particularly great way for people to realize they have something in common to talk about together. Not only are they great for the pet-parents, but they’re also great for the dogs themselves, who can meet new friends this way. This gives dogs the valuable and fun experience of playing with other dogs.
2. Extra Safety
Dog-owners need to take their pets out multiple times a day. They need to take their pets out for walks, for playing and even to go to the bathroom. If there’s no available yard or park space nearby, this means the only convenient option for most dog-owners is to walk their dogs along the side of the road.
The problem with roads is that they aren’t always the safest option, but dog-owners still need places to let their dog out. By adding a dog park to your apartment complex, you would be providing a safe area dog-owners require.
3. Leash-Free Space
Because leash laws are becoming increasingly strict, there are fewer and fewer places where dog owners can let their pets run around freely. Even some generic parks require dogs to be kept on leashes.
This means dog parks are a prized space where pet owners can let their dogs roam free off their leashes. By providing one of these right in an apartment complex, you’re not only giving your renters this special space, but you’re also making it easy, convenient and wonderfully accessible for them. That means a lot to dog-owning renters.
4. Well-Behaved Dogs
It’s been proven many times over that dogs who get plenty of physical and mental exercise tend to behave better. If they spend their energy running around outside playing with their owners and with other dogs, they have less energy to get into trouble. They’ll be less likely to be aggressive toward other humans or dogs, less likely to tear up furniture and better-behaved all around.
A well-behaved dog is good for everyone. In addition to being good for the owner, it’s also beneficial for the neighbors. They likely won’t have to listen to the dog barking through the walls or worry about it causing trouble outside. It’s helpful for you as the property owner as well because you likely won’t be called upon in any disputes between neighbors over a dog’s poor behavior.
5. Fresh Air
Taking the dog out for some exercise and socializing isn’t just good for the pet. It’s also good for the owner. By taking the dog out, dog-owners can relax in an enclosed space without having to worry about potential hazards such as traffic. They can get some fresh air and sunshine and take a break from their work, chores or other responsibilities.
Fresh air and sunshine are both natural providers of stress-relief. If your tenants have easy and regular access to a relaxing outdoor space, they’re more likely to be a little happier and a little less stressed.
6. Amenities for People
We might think of dog parks as places that strictly benefit dogs, but they have plenty of benefits for people as well. Many dog parks have things like park benches under shaded trees. These are wonderful places for people to relax as they watch their dogs play.
Not only do amenities and spaces like this allow for your tenants to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine, but they let them interact with their neighbors and other dogs. It gets them outside and lets them spend quality time bonding with their pet.
All of these are things that will lead to your tenants being a little happier, a little less stressed and a lot more likely to want to keep living at your apartment complex in the future. Not only this, but they might also be more likely to recommend your property to a friend.
Do Commercial Properties Need Dog Parks?
As an owner of an apartment complex, your primary goal is to create a space where people are willing to sign a lease and come to live. Once you have a tenant living in one of your apartments, however, you have another goal. This secondary goal is to convince them to keep living with you. After all, it’s much easier to simply re-sign an existing lease than it is to attract an entirely new renter.
To convince renters to keep renting with you, it’s up to you to do everything in your power to make sure their time with you is pleasant. One of the things you can do along these lines is to provide them with a beautiful and well-maintained dog park.
If your tenants have easy access to this park instead of having to drive to the nearest public area, this will be another reason for them to renew their lease. If their dog has become more well-behaved since living in your apartment complex, that’s another. And if they have friends and acquaintances among their neighbors, that’s still another reason.
All of the numerous benefits and advantages your dog park offers will all work together to help convince your tenants that your apartment complex is a great place to live and will be better than anything your competitors have to offer. While you can’t make your renters’ decisions for them, you can certainly do a lot to help convince them why they should stay. And adding a dog park to your facilities will go a long way toward doing just that.
Plan Your Apartment Complex’s New Dog Park Today
Now that you know just how many benefits a dog park can offer your apartments or rental community, the next step is clear. It’s time to get started thinking about creating a dog park of your own. Not sure where to get started? Let the experts at Complete Landscaping Services help.
If you run an apartment complex in Maryland, Washington D.C. or Northern Virginia, then we’d love to help you get started with a dog park of your own. We have all the resources and knowledge of a nation-wide company, but we’re focused more on our own backyard — and that means people just like you.
Whether you’re ready to get started or you’re still just trying to figure out what exactly it is you want, that’s okay. We’ll gladly sit down with you and help you talk through whatever plans or ideas you might have as you brainstorm ways to transform your outdoor space. We have years of experience to bring to the table, and we can suggest new and exciting ways to create the outdoor spaces you’re imagining. On the other hand, if you already know exactly what you want, then we’re ready and willing to start putting it together today.
Ready to get started? Contact us to get the conversation started and get a free quote for your project. We can’t wait to work with you.