John Burns Real Estate Consulting did a recent interesting analysis of several sold-out projects in the single-family rental space. It found that cutting costs in designing and building a community development doesn't automatically translate into lesser perceived value.

Three features that fell to the wayside were a private primary bathroom, a private yard, and a garage.

"Eagle Ridge at Tehaleh, south of Seattle, offered two plans (out of five total) in their first phase where the primary and secondary bedrooms shared a bathroom," the firm wrote. "While not a common tradeoff, it targeted the apartment buyer who was already accustomed to a 1-bath residence." With prices starting in the $400,000s, the builder reported that models with shared bathrooms were as successful as conventional plans.

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