Many apartment communities are now offering high-tech apartment features and amenities. Here are some advances in apartment technology offerings that you might see when looking for a new apartment.
An increasing number of apartments now come equipped with secure, high-speed, wireless Internet access, mainly because a growing number of renters have increasing needs for Internet connectivity. But the connectedness is not limited to your apartment unit. Some apartment communities also offer the ability to connect to the Internet in common areas, allowing you to connect in the business center, surf the Web while relaxing by the pool or in the clubhouse, or work online in a meeting room.
The third place
A growing trend in apartment communities is to create a place that is not home and not work — a third place. The traditional business center is getting a serious makeover in many cases to an Internet cafe, a place where you can be connected, social and totally relaxed. Some of these spaces have coffee makers, snack machines, couches and pub tables, while others emphasize productivity with multifunction copier/fax/scanners and video conferencing equipment.
The standard clubroom is also experiencing upgrades. Some apartment communities have flat panel TVs, DVD players or projection screens in their common areas; others even offer setups for video gaming.
Some luxury apartments now feature pre-wired surround sound systems that allow you to simply plug in your stereo and TV for instant, wrap-around sound. The next generation of audio wiring, however, will offer such set-ups in every room of the apartment, so that a resident has only to plug in a single sound source to a network, such as an iPod, and play it in any or every room.
Being high-tech also means using the most efficient, environmentally smart options available in all aspects of life. Most apartment communities already offer convenient recycling programs and receptacles within reach of public areas. But many residents are looking for even more far-reaching environmental upgrades. Solar heating, rooftop catchment, sustainably harvested woods for floors, low-VOC paint and other green materials and finishes are becoming more common.
Energy Star-rated appliances are also available in many apartment communities.
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