Housing options for today's college students are continously changing. An estimated 80 million "Echo Boomers" are flooding on-campus housing, which has lead to off-campus living becoming anecessity. This increased demand for student housing near campuses has generated new trends in housing development and student lifestyles
The National Center for Education Statistics predicts enrollments will rise by 13% between 2007 and 2018. Student housing is based on demographics and the increasing enrollment of colleges. Several colleges and universities are facing severe budget cuts which in these tough times they are focusing their funds on classrooms.
With the high unemloyment in this current economy, college enrollment is going up. It is getting more difficult to get in because of the demand for attending college. Although, this has put a tremendous amount of pressure on enrollment as well as adequate room and board.
Checking out the particular market's current vacancy and average rent will tell a story regarding the market demand for student housing. In Washington State, we have a terrific resource that runs an annual Washington Apartment Market survey. This is a scientific survey that provides solid reporting numbers which can be used to guage the potential of the rental market. The site is http://www.wcrer.wsu.edu.
For example, Washington State University is located in Whitman County. Whitman County is averaging just under $700 per month in rent and is at 7.9% vacancy. It is important to determine the trend of the vacancy number. In Whitman County, 2009's vacancy rate was 4.4% and in 2008 it was 8.2%. The national average is above 10% which makes Whitman County quite attractive.
Room and board averages nearly $8,600 at private schools and over $7,000 at public schools? Parents are purchasing investment property for their kids to live in, and then to rent when the child graduates. That $7000 can go right toward payments of a rental property plus if other rooms are rented out there is a cash flow as well.
I currently have several different terrific rental income listings around our Washington State University campus. I would be more than happy to show you a real example of one of these listings. Considering that room and board for your college student is a sunk cost why not sink it in an investment?