International property developers are tapping into Australia’s relatively underdeveloped and potentially lucrative student housing sector.
Developers from as far afield as Dubai, China, and South Africa are making major investments in Australia, buying land and high-rise blocks that can be redeveloped into housing that caters to international and local students studying at universities.
Australia is attracting a record number of students as its economy tacks to service industries, like education, in order to pick up the slack created by the demise of the decade-long mining boom.
South African Redefine Properties recently acquired a second development site worth $103m for student accommodation near Melbourne University, expanding its presence in this highly competitive property sector. Its new site will be able to accommodate 700 beds, with construction set to begin in 2018.
Redefine Properties already has an 804-bed development in Melbourne, valued at $139m. The firm said Melbourne has an undersupplied student housing market, and many international students are looking for high-quality accommodations.
"We remain focused on procuring high-quality properties and opportunities across strategic geographic locations. We are excited about the upside potential in student accommodation in Australia," said Andrew Konig, CEO of Redefine Properties.
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