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Student housing remains strong in May 2024

Student Housing

Student housing remains strong in May 2024

Student housing preleasing for the 2024–2025 season reached 73.5% in April, while rent growth remains strong at 5.5 percent.


By Quinn Purcell, Managing Editor | May 28, 2024
Serious male student writing, reading books and prepare for college exam in dormitory room. Top view.
Photo courtesy Adobe Stock

Preleasing for the 2024–2025 student housing season reached 73.5% in April, 50 basis points year-over-year (YOY). Although the pace has slowed down this year, preleasing has started earlier each year, outpacing typical pre-pandemic trends. That is according to the May 2024 Matrix Student Housing National Report.

Yardi Matrix Student Housing Preleasing Trends

Some operators note that a delay in FAFSA processing has impacted the sector, slowing down preleasing paces. Regardless, preleasing is up 10% or more YOY in 34 markets.

Yardi Matrix student housing preleasing data

“With the leasing season one of the best yet, the tone at the recent Interface Student Housing Conference was very positive,” the report states. “At 73.5% in April, preleasing was similar to last year’s record pace, while rent growth moderated to 5.5% but remained well above average for the sector and for commercial real estate overall.”

Top 10 Universities With the Most Year-over-Year Growth in Percentage Preleased
 

  1. Central Michigan, Mount Pleasant, Mich. (23.5% growth in percentage preleased)
  2. Bowling Green State, Bowling Green, Ohio (19.7%)
  3. Ohio University, Athens, Ohio (19.3%)
  4. University of California – Riverside, Riverside, Calif. (18.7%)
  5. University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kan. (17.7%)
  6. University of Missouri, Columbia, Mo. (16.7%)
  7. San Diego State, San Diego, Calif. (16.4%)
  8. Southern California, Los Angeles, Calif. (15.7%)
  9. University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Neb. (14.2%)
  10. Temple University, Philadelphia, Pa. (14.1%)

Some schools have nearly preleased all of their beds, with 19 schools over 90% preleased in May 2024. Ole Miss is completely preleased, while Kentucky, Purdue, and James Madison are at around 93 percent.

Meanwhile, 37 markets are more than 10% behind last year’s pace for preleasing. This includes Buffalo (23% behind the 94.8% preleasing rate in April 2023), Arizona State (19% behind), and Wisconsin (10%).


RELATED


Rent Growth Trends May 2024

Rent growth for May 2024 slowed as well but remains relatively strong. The average student housing rent rose 5.5% year-over-year in April, to $895 per bed. Though growth has slowed from the early stages of the leasing season, it remains near the 2024–2025 average of 6 percent.

Yardi Matrix annual student housing rent growth since 2019

Schools with declining rents include many that failed to reach 90% occupancy in Fall 2023, according to the Matrix report. This includes Washington State which had 81% occupancy and a rent drop of 8%, Southern California (84% occupancy, 6% rent decline), and Nevada-Reno (84% occupancy, 3% rent decline).

Universities like Tennessee lead the student housing market in terms of rent growth. Tennessee has rents up nearly 18% YOY in April, followed by Clemson (17%), Ohio State (15%), and North Texas (15%).

Click here to read the full report.

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