The student housing market is a competitive one that is naturally in high demand. Recently, student housing has emerged among the most in-demand asset classes in commercial real estate. With a surge in the number of international students as well as an increase in the middle-class demographic, the number of students has exceeded the available supply of accommodation offered by the student housing market.
This presents a valuable opportunity for those who want to stand out and advance in the current student housing market. There is no certain formula or steps to follow for one to makeover forward in the market; however, we, at Casita, have compiled a list of tips and guidelines for you that we are certain would be of help.
While flashy amenities like pools, game rooms, and on-site cinemas might attract a segment of consumers, the majority segment is mainly looking for affordable housing with the most basic of functional amenities. As an income challenged population, students often prefer convenience over luxury and seek out housing that comes with their basic needs of Wi-Fi, laundry, and utilities.
Students are more drawn to rental options that fit their schedules. If a student wants to lease for a term or the duration of a short course, they often struggle to find student housing that would accommodate their needs. This is also applicable to exchange students, students doing a semester abroad, and graduate or research students that have variable schedules. Thus, having flexible leasing options gives you an advantage over other competitors in the market.
Recently, a lot of students are seeking private accommodation with their own personal space and a private bed and bath. On the other hand, some students with a tight budget would opt for shared accommodation as it aligns more with their finances. Having a variety of leasing options for students allows you to attract a larger number of tenants with different needs and priorities.
A good way to advance in the student housing market is by advertising and providing referral bonuses. This is a great marketing strategy for your property as well, as it works in the traditional word-of-mouth way, which is favoured by students, and as suggested by research, it’s also the most common way they learn about available housing. Referral bonuses are a time and money-saving way of making more money and getting a higher market advantage.
Making your property a pet-friendly one is a smart way to expand your tenant pool. This is a feature that costs you little to no money but makes you a lot more in the process. A major segment of students, especially international ones, would love to live in a place that allows them to bring their pets along. By providing this, you set yourself apart from other competitors in the student housing market.
Though a smaller consumer segment than undergraduate students, providing accommodation options fit for graduate students will give you an extra edge in the market. Graduate students, whether masters or PhD ones, often have different lifestyles and needs than undergraduate ones. Some of them might have families they need to bring along, so they would require more spacious housing, while others might require an extra degree of privacy in their room. Try providing as many options as possible to boost your market status and add to your advantage and credibility.
While all-inclusive rents are an attractive feature for students in their housing of choice, some students prefer being given the option of a non-inclusive rental. Having both options allows you to appeal to both types of student tenants. This also gives students a choice, which they would appreciate if they were on a tight budget and in search of affordable housing.
The student housing market is a competitive one that is getting more and more in demand by the second. Thus, making sure you stand out in the said market is crucial for succeeding, flourishing, and making a name for yourself and your business. However challenging and unexpected the current market may be, with the tips and guidelines offered by Casita in mind, you will have won yourself a fighting chance to move forward and successfully advance in the student housing market.