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RealPage Guide Looks Ahead to Student Housing Outlook for Fall 2021

An unpredictable 2020 for campus operators may affect demand, construction and enrollment in Fall 2021 and beyond.

Last year was an unprecedented year for rental real estate. The student housing industry was no exception, as COVID-19 had significant and widespread market impact. Overall, the Fall 2020 leasing season can be summarized through two lenses: pre-COVID performance and post-COVID performance.

Prior to the onset of COVID-19, the industry was experiencing steady—albeit modest—performance. While modest, Fall 2020 pre-leasing and rent growth levels were trending ahead of the prior year up through March.

After March, leasing activity slowed considerably. As leasing activity dried up during the shelter-in-place phase of the pandemic, operators saw concessions increase alongside easing rent levels. In turn, rent growth moderated.

Looking ahead to Fall 2021, weak pre-lease activity suggests there will be a lot of “wait and see” as students hold decisions until the last minute based on the level of “normalcy” of campus life.

For more information, visit RealPage Student.

realpage guide looks ahead to student housing outlook for fall 2021

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