The role of a managed Internet service in Build to Rent

The role of a managed Internet service plays an important role in the effective running of Build to Rent schemes.

ASK4 reflect on the importance of fully managed internet | BTR News

In multi-tenant buildings, such as Build to Rent developments, there are many complex requirements when it comes to connectivity, meaning that traditional ISPs often aren’t equipped to cater for the unique environment and needs of its residents.


Reliable, high-quality Internet has never been more vital to the success of a multi-tenant residence as it is today. Not only are the largely tech-savvy millennial resident-base using a large collection of devices in their homes, but the rise in number of smart home devices and applications highlights the need for robust and reliable networks to allow people to run their households the way they want to.

In 2017, ASK4 research into the lifestyles of teenagers approaching University age revealed that teenagers planning on studying owned an average of 10.4 smart devices. Six years later in 2023, those same teenagers that will have graduated from university are now young professionals looking for rented accommodation (no doubt accumulating additional devices in the meantime). This means that residents not only expect, but need an immediate sign-up and connection to secure high-quality Internet as soon as they move in and start running their fleet of smart devices.

Operators who offer this type of connectivity to residents up front will reap the benefits in terms of reputation, longer tenancies and when coupled with ESG technology and reporting functionality, improved net operating income via flexible commercial offerings and the potential for reduced energy costs.

Where traditional ISPs can’t accommodate Build to Rent resident needs

When connecting residents in Build to Rent developments, traditional ISPs tend to have numerous limitations. Firstly, there is no managed service layer, meaning that the monitoring and maintenance, as well as proactive improvements to the service, are lacking when compared with a managed service. What’s more, the traditional ISP model is simply not compatible with Build to Rent operators’ all-inclusive rental business model, as Internet subscriptions cannot be rolled into rental costs. These issues result in a lower quality of connectivity and a service below residents’ expectations.

Traditional ISP's may be too outdated for the future of Build to Rent connectivity | BTR News
Traditional ISP’s may be too outdated for the future of residential connectivity.

Many multi-tenant operators tend to make the mistake of equating both traditional unmanaged and managed Internet services. While many traditional suppliers offer standard fibre connectivity which, while does provide connectivity to the apartment, does not extend this to the whole building or site, which can disconnect the idea of a site-wide community and limits the connectivity experience just to the residents’ apartment. This is an especially important consideration in Build to Rent developments, as residents aren’t only attracted to particular buildings for the quality of the apartments, they are also attracted by location, the businesses within their buildings and the integrated community feeling that Build to Rent offers.

ASK4’s managed Internet service helps residents integrate into a building’s wider community by allowing them to connect to their own secure, private network, no matter where they are on site. In practical terms, this means that smart devices in their apartments can be operated while dining in the building’s cafe, or working out in the gym for instance, making those communal facilities feel part of their home.

Where ASK4’s managed service excels

ASK4’s managed service is designed specifically for multi-tenant buildings, and perfectly meets the needs of residents, operators and investors. For residents, connectivity is about quality, reliability and convenience. With our managed service, not only do they have access to super-fast, reliable and pervasive WiFi coverage from the moment they move in, but the service also includes 4Network; ASK4’s award winning solution that enables them to connect both wired and wireless devices together in a secure way via a private network. Residents can also choose the speed package that meets their needs. whether they’re a graphic designer working from home who must have extremely high upload speeds for file transfers, or a resident who simply needs a reliable and stable connection for streaming on their smart TV, they are able to choose the most appropriate level of connectivity.

ASK4’s managed service supports unlimited devices and guest access, providing multi-channel, multilingual 24/7/365 customer support for maximum convenience and assistance precisely when they need it.

An end-to-end managed service also benefits building operators as we provide dedicated staff networks, on-going client support, as well as working proactively to set out technology roadmaps to ensure the buildings we serve are future-proofed. Making changes to infrastructure today will ensure that assets are prepared to keep up with technological evolution, without having to make upgrades at inconvenient times. We partner with our clients to understand their ambitions and objectives, who their residents are, and the type of experience they want to deliver.

ESG targets and WiredScore accreditation

ASK4’s managed service is also designed to allow operators to integrate ESG technology and reporting, working to provide vital performance data on assets and to engage residents to keep energy usage low. At an investor level, these benefits can be felt in terms of an increased asset value, optimised capex and net operating income, and ESG compliance with accurate reporting. ASK4’s accredited professionals can also work with clients to help their buildings achieve desired levels of WiredScore certification to showcase the powerful digital connectivity and smart capabilities to potential residents.

What is 4Network?

4Network is ASK4’s unique, ‘home-grown’ solution that allows seamless connectivity and communication between all of a resident’s devices, building wide – exceeding the ever-increasing demands of homes with multiple devices and IoT functionality, as well as catering for key building systems. 

To learn more about ASK4’s managed Internet solution for Build to Rent developments, or chat to us about your upcoming or existing projects, you can book a meeting with Micha Fell or Toni Waites.

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