Regarding current trends in student housing, Churchey pointed out that students today are eager for more group study space within the dorms.
Churchey also contrasted the benefits of on-campus versus off-campus student housing. While EdR believes the best housing assets are located on-campus, Churchey said, he noted that on-campus development takes a considerable amount of time to coordinate with the university.
Meanwhile, Churchey said the market for student housing assets is particularly competitive, in part due to the presence of foreign buyers.
“We’re bidding on a lot of things, but from an acquisition standpoint, we’re not hitting the right bids,” Churchey said. He added that he doesn’t expect EdR to make acquisitions this year because prices are too high.
However, “our development pipeline is so large that we have embedded growth of almost 50 percent in 2017 and 2018 compared to 2016,” Churchey added.