Planned growth at Colorado State University will most likely lead to increased multi-family development, increasing rents, and pressure on residential neighborhoods in Fort Collins CO over the next ten years, according to a recent story in the Northern Colorado Business Report.
Last fall, CSU's enrollment was approximately 27,500 students. That number is expected to increase to 35,000 over the next 10 years, and the University's housing plans will only accommodate a small percentage of that growth.
With vacancy rates at extremely low levels already, and rents showing a strong upward trend, the likelihood of additional private multi-family development is high, as is the expansion of student housing opportunities to areas further from the university. In the past, such development has been a source of contention from affected neighborhoods, and this is unlikely to change.
Further, the market for single family home purchases for students may become much more active as rents continue to increase, and this will affect a wider area than in the past. Once a strong factor in local real estate sales, this market became dormant after the City of Fort Collins passed an occupancy ordinance preventing more than three unrelated people from living together. While this ordinance had an overall beneficial effect, lessening adverse neighborhood impacts from student housing, it also made a big difference in the investment scenario behind such purchases - with only two additional rents coming in, and a general slowdown in the market, it has been a less attractive option financially. But with rising rents, it may very well make a comeback.
If you are the parent of a CSU student and would like assistance in exploring the options available for this particular chunk of your child's college expenses, please contact Mary and me. We've been working with student housing alternatives for many years now, and can help you understand and choose the right option.
Mary & Dick Greenberg