Why Smart Lockers Deliver More for Multifamily Communities

With the e-commerce industry booming and parcel shipping volumes expected to reach 200 billion by 2025, resident package management is a problem that isn’t going away.1 Add to that the fact that residents’ expectations around their living experience have significantly increased thanks to the convenience of online shopping and you get a significant problem that property managers must address.

Whether due to limited pick-up hours, delayed deliveries, or lost or stolen packages, properties’ manual package management processes and use of off-site delivery services are no longer cutting it for residents. Investing in the right solution, smart parcel lockers, not only creates long-term value for community management but also delivers a secure, convenient experience for community residents.

More Efficient Than Leasing Office Pick-Up

Processing packages manually is time-consuming – both for the community managers that need to accept, sort, and deliver packages and for the residents waiting to receive their packages.

For instance, Brickell on the River, a luxury condominium community stretching over two towers in Miami, used to see over 500 packages delivered per day! The receiving team had to log, sort, and re-distribute deliveries between the two towers, leading to a hectic process and occasional issues with damaged or lost packages.

Once a package was logged in the system, residents would receive an email notifying them of their deliveries, at which point they could claim them from their tower’s reception desk. However, residents would also receive a delivery notice from the retailer or courier as soon as their packages were discharged to the property, and they would often try to pick them up immediately—when the packages had yet to be processed by the receiving team.

Enter smart parcel lockers. Smart lockers have revolutionized package management by eliminating the need for manual acceptance, sorting, and delivery of resident packages by on-site teams. Embracing this smart technology ensures greater operational efficiency and allows residents to pick up their packages on demand – even outside leasing office hours.

After implementing smart lockers, Brickell on the River saw a significant increase in resident satisfaction. The property typically processes over 6,000 packages monthly through the lockers; their locker solutions have freed up staff time and helped to reduce headcount.

Optima Camelview, too, saw improvements in staff efficiency after implementing lockers. At this upscale 700-unit resident-owned condominium community in Scottsdale, Arizona, the community’s concierge team used to spend nearly nine hours a day on manual package management. In 2020, they implemented a Parcel Pending by Quadient smart locker solution with a package room for oversized items. The result was a 66% reduction in staff time spent on parcel management, fewer lost or misplaced packages, and 24/7, on-demand package access for residents.

More Secure Than Direct-to-Door Deliveries

Apartment communities are among the top locations experiencing package theft in the U.S., with over 75% of Americans having had a package stolen in the past year and an estimated 110 million packages stolen in 2023 (up 5% from the previous year).2 As such, the value that residents place on secure, on-demand package management solutions – particularly lockers – cannot be understated.

According to a recent National Apartment Association announcement, residents now rank “secure package receiving options” as their most important amenity.3 And, after ranking third in a 2022 NBRI study of apartment residents, parcel lockers jumped in 2023 to the second most crucial amenity – just after secure parking.

Smart lockers provide residents with a more secure delivery option than direct-to-door delivery. By logging and holding packages until they’re ready for residents to collect them, communities can virtually eliminate the risk of lost or stolen packages.

Winther Investment, Inc., for instance, saw how residents’ online shopping habits were straining the on-site teams at Winther’s managed properties. The company selected Fetch Package, an off-site delivery service, to alleviate record delivery volumes during the pandemic. Unfortunately, resident complaints of late, lost, and stolen packages prompted a re-evaluation of the parcel management strategy across the community portfolio to deliver an amenity that matched the expectations and service levels for which Winther is known.

Winther selected Parcel Pending by Quadient lockers to meet the growing needs of Winther’s community managers and frustrated residents. Parcel lockers transformed the package delivery experience for Winther’s communities. Now, residents receive packages in a secure, convenient, and reliable way and community managers are out of the package management business, no longer handling resident complaints and questions about late or lost packages.

Similarly, Plaza Hills, managed by FirstService Residential, faced a growing package theft problem. The perpetrators were stealing packages and damaging property while attempting to access them, creating a difficult situation for both residents and management. FirstService implemented a smart package locker system from Parcel Pending to address the issue. Residents now have easy, on-demand access to their packages, and FirstService has eliminated unexpected expenses related to property damage caused by attempted package theft.

Smart Locker Solutions: More Options to Meet Your Property’s Needs

One significant advantage of smart lockers is their flexibility. Unlike package storage rooms, locker configurations can be customized to meet a property’s specific package needs. For example, Parcel Pending by Quadient analyzed package volume at Brickell on the River and added more small doors to support the community’s high volume of Amazon mailers. Lockers can also augment other package management solutions, such as package rooms that are used to accommodate oversized or overflow packages.

Smart locker providers like Parcel Pending are constantly innovating their solutions to support emerging property needs. This includes introducing features like Consolidated Box, which allows residents to receive multiple deliveries from the same carrier into one locker, to help maximize a given locker system’s efficiency. A valuable locker provider partner can also provide property teams with business intelligence tools to help them measure the success and ROI on their investment.

Most importantly, lockers can be customized to match community aesthetics or branding. Vendors often offer a variety of standard colors for the property to choose from; Parcel Pending also offers custom wraps for communities that want a more personalized look for their locker solution. Venterra Realty, for example, created custom-wrapped lockers for each of their properties, a choice they say appeals to residents and acts as a property selling point.

Smart Lockers are a Win/Win for Property Teams & Residents

Investing in smart lockers for your community offers a multitude of benefits. Not only do lockers provide a secure, convenient, and reliable package management solution for residents, but they also streamline operations for your staff. As online shopping continues to grow and residents resulting package numbers go up, smart lockers will become an increasingly essential amenity to you and your residents.

Ready to lock in your residents’ preferred package management solution? Contact a Parcel Pending associate today.


  1. Von Szczepanski, K., Wagener, C., Mooney, T., et al. Only an Ecosystem Can Solve Last-Mile Gridlock in Package Delivery. June 24, 2021.
  2. Capital One Shopping. Package Theft Statistics. February 18, 2024.
  3. National Apartment Association. 5 Key Consumer Preferences of Renters. April 26, 2023.