How Smart Apartment Technology Reduces Energy Costs
A large apartment complex and a blue sky

Smart apartment technology provides many solutions to energy and cost management, including for vacant units. Multifamily turnover, which refers to the period when a resident moves out of a unit and another resident moves in, costs at least $1000 per unit and can go above $3000. Even with current historically low rates of turnover (the percentage of total rented units not renewed each year), the current rate is about 40%, which is almost half of the units across a building.

If a unit is unoccupied, it would make sense to turn off all power and lighting, right? But keeping track and physically turning off power for each apartment unit can become time-consuming, especially with various property and maintenance staff entering the unit for necessary repairs and adjusting the thermostat during that time.

Unattended vacant units can increase energy cost by 4 to 7 times. Therefore, this is a loss spent on utility expenses per vacant unit of $330 per year for a garden style property and $500 per year for a mid to high rise property.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), space heating accounted for about 25% of energy usage in commercial buildings. Automating temperature control can yield savings of between 43% and 58% across vacant units.

Real estate professionals see energy optimization as the most promising area of investment in real estate. Smart thermostats, which can be controlled and regulated through IoT, are powerful devices within the smart apartment solution to automatically reduce usage and costs and increase net operating income (NOI).

How exactly does this smart apartment technology work?

With a smart apartment platform, property managers could easily adjust the temperature of a vacant unit from one app, from anywhere in the building (or the world!). If a prospective resident will tour a vacant unit, the property manager can easily adjust the temperature for maximum comfort.

Increasing NOI, being kinder to the environment, saving money, and delighting residents can be brought together.

Want to learn more about increasing utility savings across the property? Read the five questions to ask yourself to push for a more sustainable multifamily building.


STRATIS®, a RealPage Company, creates smart apartments and intelligent buildings and is the only platform of its kind built for the complexities of multifamily and student housing. STRATIS is installed worldwide across the U.S., in Japan, the UK, EU, and Latin America. STRATIS now serves hospitality, retail, and small to mid-size commercial, as well. STRATIS is an Inc. Magazine “Fastest Growing Company in America” and a Top Ten Entrepreneur Magazine “Best Company in America.” STRATIS was recently acquired by RealPage to enable STRATIS Smart Building, a more connected lifestyle, and unleash hidden yield through new revenue streams.

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