Presented by: National Real Estate Investor

Author: Felicia Hyde, Principal/Design Director, H. Hendy Associates

For years, Millennials have been coined the experience-driv­en generation known for investing their loyalty and dollars in experiences, not products. Now, consumers across age demographics-including Gen X, Gen Z and boomers-are starting to follow suit.

In the last few years, U.S. consumers spent four times more on experience-related purchases than physical goods. So, it’s no surprise that this desire for experience will influence expectations for living environments, too. Here’s a look at how the growing demand for experiential living will transform multifamily and even senior housing properties, in years to come.

All-Inclusive Living

With the goal to provide renters with unique living experiences and set themselves apart, multifamily developers are turning the operations dial up another notch – offering tenants the next iteration of all-inclusive, hotel-like living. This is going beyond dry cleaning and full-service concierge, but rather unique offerings that inspire resident interaction and infuse the local culture. Multifamily communities of tomorrow are offering residents poolside drink service and incorporating pop-up shops – everything from local retail to food and wine to art and handcrafted goods.

Wellness Integration 2.0

From float therapy to fitness on-demand to goat yoga, wellness services today do not fall short of providing consumers with options to sustain their mental and physical well-being. With global wellness valued at $4.2 trillion and wellness real estate named one of the top five fastest-growing sectors – and projected to grow to $198 billion by 2022 – residents will soon expect the same offerings in multifamily environments. To attract and retain the next class of health-conscious consumers, multifamily owners and operators will need to integrate innovative wellness solutions that fuel the mind, body and soul. Think Himalayan salt rooms for detoxification, sensory deprivation tanks to induce relaxation and infrared saunas to increase oxygen flow and circulation.

Coworking on Steroids

Consider this: by 2020, 50 percent of the U.S. workforce will be remote – prompting multifamily developers nationwide to evolve their design strategies to support the growing gig economy. In comes coworking spaces. While coworking is not necessarily the new kid on the block, these spaces will soon shift from a luxury amenity to a resident “must have.” To accommodate, developers will replace underutilized space such as business centers and lobbies with coworking zones and incorporate them as part of the initial design for new projects. Better than before, coworking spaces will be equipped with high-end technology, biophilic design and advanced scheduling tools.

Senior Housing Not So Senior

The senior demographic is growing rapidly – nearly three times the rate of our total population-and this generation is more active and social into their later years of life. Essentially, 85 years old is the new 65 years old. As a result, seniors looking to downsize will search for living experiences that support health, wellness and offer a strong sense of community. Looking ahead, this dynamic will spark a demand for senior living communities choc-full of hotel-like amenities – ultimately transforming senior housing design from traditional, outpatient models to high-end luxury apartments for active adults.