The real-estate companies cashing in on college students


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18 January 2016

Press release - January 5th 2016 (Market Watch)

College students are a captive audience for more than just lectures

Buying and selling student accommodation is a lucrative business.

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Canada’s largest single-purpose pension fund; GIC Private Ltd., an investment firm that manages Singapore’s foreign reserves; and the Scion Group, a student-housing owner and operator have joined forces to buy a 22-property student housing portfolio for $1.4 billion, the companies announced Monday. The group purchased the properties from InvenTrust Properties, a real-estate investment trust, which was looking to unload its student housing to focus more on multitenant retail properties, according to a news release.

Beyond the captive student audience, and companies’ ability to rent students spaces, college housing may be lucrative for another reason: Changing student demographics and preferences. State funding cuts to higher education and rising college costs also mean that even at the nation’s flagship public universities, the student population is skewing wealthy.

 In that environment, luxury student apartment buildings close to campus with security features like on-site management, fitness centers, swimming pools and other amenities have grown increasingly popular — and developers are capitalizing.

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