Under the student brand “TWENTY FIRST Student Living”, Deutsche Real Estate Funds (DREF) has let as many as 1,500 residential units in the past six months. This means that at the start of the 2016/2017 winter semester, DREF has achieved a letting capacity utilization of its already refurbished student apartments and rooms amounting to 98 percent.
“We buy up existing residences and convert them in record speed to a contemporary standard of living that corresponds to today’s student needs and remains affordable nevertheless. In doing so, not only do we make a key contribution toward easing the pressure on numerous student residential markets in Germany; we don’t just talk – we deliver,” says Felix Bauer, CEO and CSO of Deutsche Real Estate Funds Advisor.
In the past one-and-a-half years, DREF has purchased 3,500 units, spread across 17 student residences throughout Germany. The remaining 2,000 units are expected to be ready for occupation by the upcoming summer semester. In 2017, DREF plans to acquire a further 1,500 units; these have already been notarially secured.
DREF’s letting capacity utilization also reflects the enormous shortage of modern student living space in the medium price segment in Germany. Only 240,000 students find accommodation in state-subsidized “Studentenwerke”. On the open market, the general housing scarcity in numerous cities, the intensifying competition between students, senior citizens and commuters as well as the rising number of students are causing rents to soar sky-high. Since the year 2010, rents have seen a massive rise, particularly in popular university cities. In Munich, prices are up by 25 percent, to 615 euros, in Berlin by 37 percent, to 407 euros, in Osnabrück by 25 percent, to 397 euros, and in Stuttgart by 21 percent, to 488 euros.
These are the results of the Student Accommodation Price Index published twice a year by DREF in cooperation with the Cologne Institute for Economic Research (IW Köln). This index measures the price trends for a typical student apartment in 15 major and university cities.
Furthermore, DREF has meanwhile fully integrated the real estate administration software Yardi Voyager Residential, combining it with the Starrez booking platform. Besides, DREF has developed a community surrounding the “TWENTY FIRST Student Living” brand. For instance, students can change between DREF residences throughout Germany with no red tape whatsoever if they wish to do an internship in a different city or move from one study location to another.
“Today’s students no longer just want to live somewhere; they want to be digitally connected with life wherever they happen to be. We offer them the opportunity to network among each other and use specially tailored services of external partners either free of charge or at considerably more favorable prices. We ensure that students can fully concentrate on their studies. And this makes us pioneers in Germany,” says Camillo von Pachmann, Head of Business Development at DREF.