How Student Housing can be an Opportunity for Investment

When people not from Flagstaff think of Flagstaff, it's usually for one of these reasons:

  • Oh! That's by Sedona, right?

  • My kids go to college at NAU!

  • I drove through there to get to the Grand Canyon!

While Flagstaff, is known for its beauty and close community, it is widely known as a college town because of Northern Arizona University. With that being said, there are several student housing complexes near the university. However, did you know that all of them are currently near 100% capacity? Not only are they almost completely full, but almost all of the student housing complexes have begun leasing for the 2022-2023 school year with leases starting in August 2022.

Figure 1. The pink bar shows the current occupancy of the student housing complexes, and the navy bar shows the current pre-lease percentage for the 2022-2023 school year.


What does that mean for investors? It's never too soon to invest in homes in Flagstaff and rent them out to students. The amount of students who are in need of housing is growing every year, and not every student is interested in apartment-style living. Did you know that all of the student housing complexes have 11-12 month leases that run from August to July? This is a deterring factor for students who have summer plans in their hometowns, internships, or summer study abroad. With the flexibility of rental homes, 10-month leases are a possibility and become highly desirable. Worried about not being able to fill the two-month gap? Worry not! There are plenty of students who come into town early or actually come to Flagstaff for their summer work opportunities.


What can you make from an investment home? While in the past it was common to rent out a home in its entirety, that's not the case in Flagstaff. The common leasing strategy in Flagstaff is to lease by the bedroom, charging anywhere from $600-$900 per bedroom. The cost ranges based on amenities, room size, private/shared bathroom, etc.


Take advantage of the market! Ask questions about the Flagstaff real estate or student housing market below!


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