Publications

- January 1, 2020: Vol. 32, Number 1

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Smaller class sizes: Should student housing investors be worried about declining undergraduate enrollment?

by Andrea Zander

The United States is the world’s largest student housing market, attracting the highest volume of investment capital each year. Annual student housing investment volume has more than tripled since 2014, reaching $11 billion in 2018, reported CBRE. And the prices for U.S. student housing investments have never been higher, reported Real Capital Analytics in June 2019.

In addition, heavyweight firms such as Blackstone are entering the student housing sector. Blackstone recently spent $1.2 billion to acquire 20 student housing developments adjacent to schools, including the University of California Riverside, Pennsylvania State University and Arizona State University. U.K. company Scape has plans to invest $1 billion in private off-campus housing for 2,000 students in Boston, with a goal of expanding to 20,000. And a big player in the space, public REIT American Campus Communities, has plans to add 20,000 beds by the fall 2020 term.

With investors’ interest, student h

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