Student housing sector fuels real estate and startup growth alike

Student housing sector fuels real estate and startup growth alike

Students seem set to be the main target audience for India’s real estate developers in the near future as opined by several experts. Before you think that we’re referring to an onslaught of educational facilities, Wi-Fi, free laptops, gaming and so on offered by property developers to their clients, it makes sense to say that student housing is set to be a key growth driver for the Indian property market over the next few years. This has been highlighted through several reports and studies which are now making reputed realty firms take notice.

Student housing is the need of the hour as students are no longer simply confined to their homes or their hometowns in matters of education. Almost all of them are traveling out of their hometowns because they want to expand their horizons. Hostel accommodation is scarce and often has a long waiting list. Which is why, student housing is on the rise and they are economical and fitted with all the basic amenities. There are a number of start- ups who are have now started operating in this field and there are student housing providers like Oxfordcaps, Tribestays, PLACIO, Campus Student and Stanza Living among others.

Most of these are operating in cities like Pune, Bangalore, Delhi. Mumbai, Noida, Dehradun and Jaipur amongst others. The organized student housing space has reached around 75,000 beds and it is slated to cross the 2 lakhs mark by 2020. There are also a number of private equity players who have started looking into this matter with interest as a lucrative investment option. The PE investment is slated to grow exponentially in the next couple of years.

What industry professionals feel

According to industry experts, there is a demand for affordable yet, tech based community style living among the students. There are some who are offering expensive, state of the art accommodation facilities for students who do not want to compromise on their lifestyle and are not reluctant to spend for it. There is a niche for all kinds of budget and the tech- savvy players are also considering the western models of student housing. These accommodations have high tech gadgets, that appeal to the youngsters and there is much innovation in the designing of space. The rooms are fun and aesthetic at the same time and they come with activity rooms, study halls and gaming rooms as well to cater to the youngsters.

Considering the fact that youngsters are now frequently moving from one city to another, what with course work and field work and internships, student housing in particular has generated a huge demand. This because the educational institute themselves meet only about 18% to 20% of the student housing demand and at present there is a demand for about 10 million beds across the major Indian cities. The sector is going to grow rapidly and experts are already seeing a time when student housing will have tie ups with universities, independent housing and facilities management.

According to data compiled by the Ministry of Human Resource and Development, India currently has a student population of over 36 million that are pursuing higher education. This population will keep on increasing as more than one third of this population usually ends up migrating to Pune, Bangalore, Gurgaon, Noida, Nagpur and other cities. The opportunities of growth in this sector are immense and if the Western models are anything to go by, soon there will be housing built and developed by developers solely to cater to students, which has tremendous scope of revenue generation.