My girlfriend is finishing up her basement and has set up a good layout for electrical outlets throughout the rooms (family room, bedroom, and office), but she's only accounted for a single coaxial cable run to each room for her ideal furniture arrangement. I talked her into at least running a phone line along with the cable to match the rest of her house (and at least an ethernet connection as well for when I move in to accommodate my geek projects), but I'm trying to talk her into more than one run per room. I've rented for several years and most apartments have at least 2 cable/telephone outlets on opposite walls/corners of the room to widen the options for furniture arrangements. Since she's looking at putting her place on the market in a few years I'm trying to convince her it will be a helpful selling point, but my Google-fu is failing me at finding supporting or negating evidence. Is there any evidence one way or the other, or are my geeky more-is-better ideas influencing me?
I doubt most buyers will even notice or care if it was pointed out to them. Today, everyone uses a cordless telephone, wifi for networking, and any cables are just run around the baseboard. And I say this as a geek that ran conduit through the walls when I redid my basement. Speaking of which, if you ever remodel (or build) something you plan to stay in, run conduit through the walls.
The key point you need to keep in mind is that it should be possible to get to a majority of the walls along the baseboard from your wall jacks without passing a door or closet. If a large wall could be used for a TV but requires running the wire over the door, then I'd put a second jack on that side.
My guess for apartment owners is that two jacks results in less wires over carpets or nails holding wires everywhere, so they do this more to reduce damage than to make your life easier.
If you're going through the trouble of running cables, go all out. The difference of 3 cat5 versus 1 cat5 is minimal, but can make a huge difference in usefulness in the future. If later you find you need them in a room, it is much more work to add them then. I would personally allow for the possibility of at least 3 internet enabled devices in every room. It doesn't mean that there will be that many in every room, but it allows that any given room should be able to accommodate most needs that way. You might look at pulling 4-5 in the main room of the house. You can get faceplates that can mix and match connections so you can have up to 4 RJ45, 1 RJ14 and 1 coaxial all in the same spot on a wall.
I finished my basement a few years ago and ran two coax, two ethernet, speaker and phone lines to each room.
How many of them have I used since then? 0.
Ethernet/phone = nice to have but, really, everything is wireless now.
Coax = likely useful for a few more years, but that, too, will eventually be wireless (we're close already as most of our watching is done via Amazon Streaming or Hulu now).
Speaker = well...this could be useful. I had dreams of a massive surround sound system. But then I got my new TV and realized the sound quality of the TV was great. So didn't need the surround sound.
So...I'd suggest that rather than running all that cable, she run smurf tube with a fish line to blank outlets in each room. It's cheap, and makes it easy for any future cable pulling without having to invest in it all now.
I recently did my house, and only put a single port in each room thinking, "I can just use an ethernet switch." I have found from experience though that when you have a TV, Wii, XBox, Cable Box, Media PC, Audio Receiver, and a Subwoofer, adding an extra A/C plug, extra device and all of the RJ-45 cable running to that device just adds to the clutter.
You might just have to say that networked devices are going to become more and more prevalent in the future, and just as people want plenty of A/C outlets, they will also want plenty of RJ-45 jacks.