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By Altus Group | March 30, 2018

In the following three-part podcast interview,  Altus Group speaks with Robert Kilroy, a long-time industry participant, developer, and investor, about the current state of the student housing market, significant market trends, the impact of rising student loan debt, the role of data analytics, and the future of innovation for the sector.


Podcast #1: Student Housing Trends & Analyzing the Market

Today’s student housing market is highly dynamic with the industry maturing very quickly, and demand continuing to rise. As a result, more development of purpose-built student housing is increasing to meet the unique lifestyle needs for a wide range of learners. In addition, many successful developers are offering dynamic product in underserved markets, resulting in high occupancy rates and longer-term opportunities.

  • Where is the student housing market is in terms of the current overall market cycle. (1:23)
  • Macroeconomic trends and why the student housing market is very sound right now with robust demand. (3:48)
  • Purpose-built student housing versus traditional multi-family markets. (8:00)
  • Comparisons between square-foot rent rates between student housing and traditional multi-housing. (12:04)
  • Why student housing is still considered a bit of a “cottage industry.” (16:57)


Podcast #2: Higher Education Macro Economics Trends and Student Housing

With many of today’s students shouldering more debt to pay for their education and a potential rise in interest rates, the student housing market could be negatively impacted. However, today’s off-campus student housing offerings compete very well – both on price and amenities – with traditional on-campus housing. As such, the rise of student loan debt may not have a considerable impact on future demand for off-campus student housing.

  • How the increase in demand for student housing may be being driven by abundant education loans, and the long-term impact this could have on the industry. (:41)
  • How the trend of students seeking “cheaper education alternatives,” such as online curricula and vocational schools, could potentially impact the student housing demand. (7:25)
  • Insights into what would hypothetically happen to the marketplace if student loan debt was ultimately forgiven by the U.S. government. (11:42)


Podcast #3: Data, Innovation, and the Future of Student Housing

With the rise of business data and analytics, developers in the student housing arena are embracing these types of information-driven tools to both minimize risks and ensure that demand is properly being met. In addition, artificial intelligence (AI), driverless transportation options, and more energy efficiency approaches will all have a direct impact on the future of the student housing market.

  • Why research and data is vital for helping developers to best understand the market and critical issues when going into new projects. (:39)
  • Key lessons learned from past deals, and how to best manage the cost risks that come with student housing development. (4:00)
  • What the future will hold for the student housing development sector, and how it ties back to many innovations that will impact all of our daily lives. (7:57)
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