The remote work revolution is more than a trend. It’s here to stay. But, while internet connectivity at home has become increasingly important over the years, the COVID-19 pandemic has made WiFi an absolute necessity for most renters. 

Nearly 60% of Millenials work from home at least part of the time. Many previously reluctant employers are jumping on the bandwagon too and moving toward hybrid systems, where employees work a few days a week remotely. Now, couple these shifts with the demands of the younger generations of renters. Millennials and Gen Z place connectivity and internet services high on their list of desired amenities. Starting to get a sense of the bigger picture? 

For landlords and property owners, who want to differentiate their apartments and rental properties, offering apartment community WiFi can help boost closing ratio and renewal rate

What is apartment community Wi-Fi?

If there’s one thing Millennials and Gen Z renters focus on with their apartment searches, it’s amenities, especially secure internet access and smart tool connectivity. Your residents want to be able to work from home, do their homework, stream their favorite shows, play games, and control their thermostats from their phones without worrying about lags, security, or downtime. Without reliable high-speed Wi-Fi access, those conveniences aren’t options, and you may be losing potential renters. 

Community Wi-Fi for your multifamily properties is one potential solution. It offers wireless access to renters while maintaining security and privacy. It also helps streamline the move-in process. Your residents can have access immediately, removing the hassle of contacting internet companies, setting up routers, or waiting for coverage.

It goes by many names, community Wi-Fi, managed Wi-Fi, or property-wide Wi-Fi, bulk internet but the process is the same. An internet service provider (ISP) installs a Wi-Fi network within your building, allowing for resident access inside each unit through either an in-unit router or pre-determined access points in the building. If you want, you can also get coverage in shared spaces such as a lobby or community workspace. Then, based on the provider you choose, Wi-Fi connectivity is managed by your ISP or through a third-party provider that helps set up and monitor the service.

The pros and cons of apartment community Wi-Fi

Apartment community Wi-Fi isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. But, as renters require better and convenient Wi-Fi access, it is something you may want to consider learning more about. But, before you decide to jump in, think about some potential opportunities and obstacles. 


Renters want technology 

Being able to offer your tenants an easy way to access smart appliances, tap into the IoT, and give them the tech upgrades they want is an easy way to stand out from the competition. Renters want community-wide digital access and offerings. Plus, a network that you control allows you to offer secure public Wi-Fi or wireless hot-spots in shared spaces. 

Less stress on move-in

Having a wireless network already set up in your apartment building means your renters can be up and running within minutes. They don’t have to worry about scheduling an appointment for a technician or being offline for a few days during an already busy time. In the middle of a busy move, especially if you rely on Wi-Fi for working at home, renters often don’t have the time to wait days to get set up. For a potential renter who works from home, or isn’t tech savvy, knowing they will have internet access at move-in is a big benefit. 

Flexible options 

Depending on the internet service provider you choose, you can offer more flexibility to your residents than they may find on their own by allowing them to pick through a few selected plans. Plus, with you managing the Wi-Fi network, you can pick and choose the plans, potentially allowing you to bring in more revenue each month by offering upgraded services. Renters also don’t need to worry about contracts, credit checks, equipment charges, or other hidden fees. 

Get more ROI 

Offering high-speed apartment community Wi-Fi is a premium amenity that can help boost your rent. With many providers, you have the option of integrating your resident’s monthly Wi-Fi service price into their rent, and handling it all through your property management software. That allows residents the convenience of paying for fewer utilities while potentially increasing your in-unit NOI at the same time.

Control the installation process

When you’re in charge of the installation process, rather than your residents, you can work with the internet service providers to find the best spots for equipment. That can help you maximize your community network connectivity without adding unnecessary holes, damaging walls, or disturbing other residents. You choose where everything goes.


You aren’t an IT technician

For many landlords, this is a real concern. If something happens to your high-speed internet connection, do you have the time to try and figure it out? Here’s where working with the right provider can help. Many offer round-the-clock support desks to help with troubleshooting potential service issues.

You have a small property portfolio

While apartment community Wi-Fi is becoming a key amenity for many newer buildings, there are still options for smaller and older units too, either through retrofitting or adding access points. And the costs aren’t prohibitive. In fact, having a unit that offers a lot of character and next-generation technology could be a major selling point for potential renters.

Some tenants want other options

In most cases, the wireless connection provided by community Wi-Fi will provide enough coverage to meet your residents' needs. However, you may have some renters who want more bandwidth or are concerned about security. In that case, consider working with an ISP that offers flexible plan options so community members who need more speed or performance can upgrade.

Is it worth the cost? 

That might be one of the biggest questions landlords ask about installing Wi-Fi access points and providing service. However, the options may be more affordable than you think. It depends on the market and the size of your community, but typically ISPs charge an overall monthly fee for service and support. Then, you charge your residents for their coverage for service and support. For many renters, the convenience is worth extra small monthly fees.

An image of a renter sitting on his couch and using an ipad on free WiFi

The best apartment community Wi-Fi providers

If you’re leaning toward providing WiFi for your apartment units, your next step is to get in touch with service providers. While there are many options to choose from, here are some companies to consider. 


Spectrum is one of the largest providers of managed Wi-Fi for apartment buildings, offering packages that include the full range of internet, tv, and phone services. Spectrum professionally manages the service and allows for multiple networks. So you’ll have private networks for your residents, and then additional options such as the ability to offer free Wi-Fi in public areas and guest network logins.

If you are a mid-market or enterprise-level landlord or property owner, the features and pricing Spectrum provides may be more in line with your needs.

Key features include:

  • Both property management and residential support services and portals. 

  • Activation can be tied to the move-in date.

  • Provides both in-home access and connection to Wi-Fi hotspots within the network’s coverage area. 

Learn more about Spectrum’s property-wide managed Wi-Fi services.


Like Spectrum, Dish is another one of the bigger internet service providers that also offer property-wide Wi-Fi services. Dish introduced Dish Fiber in 2019 specifically as a service geared toward multi-family communities. Dish Fiber includes fast and secure Wi-Fi access as well as 24 live streaming channels on the Dish network. Dish tv access requires one satellite installed on your building, while Wi-Fi is delivered through Wi-Fi access points in the building.

Dish Fiber is for property owners who have buildings with 60 or more units.

Key features include:

  • Residents can upgrade their tv requests on their own and install any necessary equipment.

  • Allows for instant activation on move-in day.

  • Offers high-speed gig-enabled WiFi and tv packages in one.

Learn more about Dish Fiber and how it works with apartment communities.


Homebase is a company built around adding more automation and smart technology features to homes and apartment buildings. As part of their offerings, Homebase also provides managed apartment community Wi-Fi service as part of their offerings. Homebase is not an ISP. It relies on T-Mobile’s coverage area and allows for you to work with them to build more flexible and customized plan options.

Homebase works for communities of all sizes, but it may be a good fit for you if you’re a smaller landlord with older units, it may be a good fit for you.

Key features include:

  • Custom tiered wireless subscription plans so residents can choose the coverage that works best for them.

  • Manages and tracks internet coverage and begins the troubleshooting process if it does go down.

  • Homebase techs can design custom networks to retrofit buildings to upgrade coverage.

Learn more about how Homebase manages multi-family Wi-Fi.

Technology is now an amenity

Today’s renters are savvy. They want the latest in technology to help make their lives easier, so not having these conveniences can end up hurting your potential to attract them. 

Another amenity of convenience that matters to renters is the digital leasing process. Many renters want to satisfy move-in requirements, pay fees, easily pay rent, request maintenance, and renew their lease entirely online. For example, when you partner with Rhino, you don’t need to collect cash or check deposits from your renter (who may not even have a checkbook!). Instead, they purchase security deposit insurance online as part of the online leasing process. 

Partnering with us allows you to automate your security deposit process, saving both you and your renter time and money. If you’d like to learn more, get in touch today.

Headshot of Jessica White, senior product writer at Rhino
Jessica White

Jessica White is a senior writer at Rhino who considers herself a queen of small victories. She believes that every renter’s biggest win is kicking cash deposits to the curb.