WiredScore has brought its home connectivity rating scheme to the North American multifamily market.
First launched for UK build to rent in 2019, WiredScore Home expands on the company’s commercial property ratings, which have certified more than 700 million sq ft across 12 countries since 2013.
As businesses allow more employees to work remotely, the need for good connectivity at home is now “business critical”, WiredScore said.
However, research commissioned by the company found that homeowners and renters with poor internet access in North America spend an estimated $337 per year – 3.5 GB per month at an average of $8 per GB – topping up poor WiFi with additional mobile data.
The report also showed that 80% have frequent issues with their WiFi connection and experience 20 outages a month despite spending $744 per year on home internet.
WiredScore said the certification brings “critical transparency” to the residential market, allowing landlords and operators to demonstrate the level of connectivity in their buildings.
WiredScore Home will also give renters a clearer idea of how well connected their homes are before they sign a lease and investors an indication of how future-proof a potential multifamily investment is.
Arie Barendrecht, founder and CEO of WiredScore, said: “Great connectivity is critical to almost all aspects of our lives – leisure, social and particularly work, as we’ve learnt this past year.
“We are confident that transparency around digital connectivity in the home provided by our WiredScore certification will mean that consumers are able to make more informed decisions when deciding where to live and will allow multifamily investors and developers alike to uphold the highest standards in their developments.”
Some 84% of respondents in WiredScore’s survey said they consider WiFi a utility and expect it to work like any other utility. Half of workers said they would not have been able to keep their job during the pandemic if they had not been able to work remotely with high-speed internet access.
At the launch of WiredScore Home last week, 42 buildings and 14,000 apartments had signed up for the certification in North America from industry leaders such as Hines, Greystar, JP Morgan, KingSett Capital and Starlight Capital.
Kevin Donnelly, vice president, government affairs at the National Multifamily Housing Council, added, “Multifamily landlords in particular have been setting out to prioritise connectivity and ensure a higher level of service and superior experience. To achieve this, they need to know that the buildings they are investing in can provide for renters today and will also deliver the technology renters will be using tomorrow.
“WiredScore is a welcome development in the multifamily market and will help provide transparency and recognition for best-in-class digital infrastructure.”
WiredScore Home’s North American launch comes two months after WiredScore introduced SmartScore, its smart building certification scheme.