What Are the Key Factors Affecting the Success of Serviced Apartments in Urban Markets?

April 8, 2024

The short-term rental market is continuously evolving, and serviced apartments are rapidly gaining popularity. These properties offer guests a blend of hotel-like amenities and the comforts of home, making them an intriguing choice for urban travelers. If you are involved in property management, understanding the keys to success in the serviced apartments sector is essential. This article will explore various factors that contribute to the success of serviced apartments in urban markets, including property location, price, quality of service, effective marketing, and guest satisfaction.

Location of The Property

The old adage, "location, location, location," rings true in the realm of short-term rentals. The location of your serviced apartments plays a crucial role in their success. If your property is situated in a prime urban area, close to amenities, attractions, and transportation hubs, it inherently becomes more desirable for guests.

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A property in a bustling city district offers guests the convenience of short travel times to places of interest. Of course, the definition of a prime location can vary depending on the target market. For business travelers, proximity to business districts is important. For vacationers, being near tourist attractions or vibrant nightlife might be more valuable. Therefore, it’s crucial to understand your guests’ needs and ensure your property offers a strategic location that suits those needs.

Pricing Strategy

Price is another significant factor that impacts the success of serviced apartments. While you want your prices to reflect the quality and value of your property, it’s also essential to remain competitive within the market. High prices can deter potential guests, but underpricing your rentals can also lead to substantial income loss.

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To determine an optimal price, research the local market thoroughly and comprehend the pricing strategies of your competitors. Consider factors such as the time of year, local events, and even the day of the week when setting your prices. Dynamic pricing, a strategy often employed by airlines and hotels, can also be effective. By adjusting prices based on demand and other factors, you can maximize income while maintaining occupancy rates.

Quality of Service and Amenities

The level of service provided and the amenities offered can significantly influence guest satisfaction and, in turn, the success of your serviced apartments. Just as in a hotel, guests appreciate a seamless check-in process, prompt response to inquiries, and an immaculately clean space.

Amenities play a leading role in the guest’s decision-making process. Essentials like Wi-Fi, a fully-equipped kitchen, in-unit laundry, and comfortable beds are expected in serviced apartments. Additionally, offering unique amenities — think a rooftop terrace or a fitness center — can set your property apart from others on platforms like Airbnb.

Marketing and Management

The way you market your serviced apartments can significantly impact their success. With numerous properties listed on rental platforms, standing out from the crowd is crucial. High-quality photos, detailed descriptions of the property and its amenities, and showcasing the unique features of your apartments can attract potential guests.

Proper management of your rentals is equally important. Effective management includes prompt communication with guests, dealing with maintenance issues swiftly, and ensuring the property is clean and ready for every guest’s arrival. Utilizing a property management company can relieve some of this burden, but choosing a reputable one is key.

Guest Satisfaction

Ultimately, the success of your serviced apartments hinges on guest satisfaction. Happy guests are more likely to leave positive reviews, which can boost your property’s visibility on rental platforms and attract more guests in the future.

Creating a comfortable and enjoyable stay for your guests should be at the forefront of your strategy. This involves not just providing a clean and well-furnished space, but also being available to address any concerns or issues your guests might have during their stay. By prioritizing guest satisfaction, you can build a strong reputation and a loyal customer base in the competitive urban short-term rental market.

Utilizing Revenue Management

Revenue management, a concept adopted from the hotel industry, can be a game-changer for property managers in the serviced apartment sector. In essence, revenue management involves forecasting demand, controlling inventory, and setting prices to maximize revenue. In the realm of short-term rentals, this strategy can be employed to optimize rental income.

Accurate demand forecasts allow property managers to adjust pricing and occupancy rates to meet market trends. For instance, during peak travel seasons or during major events in the city, demand for accommodations is high. During these periods, property managers can raise their rates to capitalize on this demand, subsequently boosting their overall revenue.

Controlling inventory, or the number of apartments available for rent, is another crucial aspect of revenue management. By balancing the availability of their properties with the demand, property managers can avoid both overbooking and vacancies—both of which could impact revenue negatively.

Lastly, dynamic pricing comes into play. This involves adjusting prices based on various factors such as the time of year, day of the week, length of stay, and even the proximity to the booking date. This strategy helps property managers remain competitive while ensuring their rental income remains robust.

Building and Maintaining Relationships with Estate Agents

For serviced apartment operators, forming strong relationships with estate agents can play a crucial role in their success. Estate agents can provide valuable insights into the local real estate market and can connect operators with property owners looking to lease their units for short-term rentals.

This symbiotic relationship is beneficial to both parties. Estate agents gain access to a wider pool of potential tenants for their clients’ properties, while serviced apartment operators can secure high-quality units in prime locations. Furthermore, estate agents can provide advice on how to attract long-term tenants during off-peak travel seasons, ensuring a steady flow of rental income.

Maintaining these relationships requires regular communication and mutual respect. Serviced apartment operators should aim to be reliable and professional, paying rents on time and keeping the properties in optimal condition. On the other hand, estate agents should be transparent about their clients’ expectations and any changes in the local market.


In conclusion, the keys to success in the serviced apartment sector within urban markets are multifaceted. Location, pricing, quality of service, effective marketing, and guest satisfaction remain the cornerstones. However, incorporating revenue management strategies and fostering strong relationships with estate agents can give property managers an edge in this increasingly competitive market.

As the short-term rental market continues to evolve, property managers must stay adaptable and proactive. Whether it’s investing in smart technology to enhance guest experience or partnering with local businesses to offer exclusive perks to guests, innovation is critical. By staying attuned to the needs and expectations of their guests, property managers can ensure that their serviced apartments remain a top choice for urban travelers. Ultimately, the success of serviced apartments hinges on a thoughtful and strategic combination of these key factors. So, stay agile, keep learning, and always put your guests first.