It is already well documented that when properly managed, property investments can quickly become profitable. Investing in a property close to a campus has many benefits (see below) and Canadian student rental properties are becoming increasingly interesting for investors.
A good number of Canadian cities are present in any lists discussing the most desirable places to live in the world, with Toronto, Ottawa, Vancouver and Montreal often featuring prominently in lists. Apart from education, the cities offer top level health care, diversity, green spaces, mass transit and more. Additionally, the Canadian Dollar has proven to be more stable than many other major currencies in recent years- reducing the possibility of dealing with huge swings in property or rental income values. So how do you get started with your Canadian student rental property investment? What other details do you have to keep in mind?
Choosing a property
Selecting the right property is vital for your investment. What qualifies as “the right property” for students differ from what qualifies as the right property for long term homeowners. Factors that can sway opinions in favour of your property include curb appeal, safety of neighbourhood, proximity to campus and proximity to public transit. Looking at real estate near Simon Fraser University is a good place to begin your search.
This largely depends on your budget. Single units can be purchased with your savings but you will most likely need financing for multi units. A good tip here is to work with other like-minded investors to pool resources together. Profits and expenses can then be shared. Alternatively, you can consider your loan options from several lending houses.
When your property is up and running, you need to get word out to students. Get advertisement deals with nearby colleges as many of them have ad spaces on their websites or student newspapers. Marketing for your student rental property isn’t a one-off as students move out regularly all through the year- leaving you with vacancies to fill.
Maintenance and management
If you are a hands-on investor, you may be able to manage your student rental property. However, many investors prefer to work with professional student housing property managers who will take care of all maintenance, settle disputes, and carry out small repairs and more. The maintenance and management is arguably the hardest challenge with this investment option. Handing things over to professionals immediately deals with it.
So what are the benefits of investing in student property?
Plenty of tenants
In a student town, the population of renters is often sizeable. Apart from new students coming in every semester, older students are always on the lookout for better deals. Investors always have a healthy number of prospective tenants to choose from.
In college towns, there is always demand for rentals. This demand is what keeps rental prices in the area healthy even when the housing market in other areas is struggling. The fact that student rentals are paid by parents and in some cases the college, there is little to no fear about defaults.
Reduced “down time”
Students may constantly be on the move but you don’t have to wait for long for the vacancy to get filled. There is always the next tenant (student or college employee) looking for a space.
College areas are already marketable
When it comes to marketing your property, you only have to focus on what the property has to offer. You don’t need to spend time talking about attractions as most college areas in Canada already have this. Most of the areas are rich in culture and entertainment, have a robust foodie scene and also have robust transport networks.
When becoming a landlord there are hidden expenses to be aware of, and it isn’t always a bed of roses. If you get the right property and the right tenants, though, you have most of the equation right.
If you haven’t considered Canadian student rental property before, now is a good time to start!