What to look for in a PBSA investment

Savvy investors are increasingly turning to PBSA (purpose-built student accommodation) investment because it represents a hassle-free, hands-off opportunity with guaranteed returns. Because the properties are already furnished and there’s a management company already in place to look after tenancies and maintenance etc then it allows you as an investor, to sit back and let the money roll in. And with a ready supply of students every year and a huge demand for quality accommodation, you will have no shortage of students wanting to live there.


With any investment it always pays to do your due diligence so here are our recommendations on what to look for in a PBSA investment:


Location – Location is everything when it comes to student accommodation. Students want to be near where the action is and within easy walking distance of the university campus. This means that the accommodation should be close to everything that the town or city has to offer such as bars, restaurants, entertainment, public transport etc. We would also recommend that you choose a property no further than 10 to 15 minutes walking distance from the campus. The closer you are, the higher the demand will be.


Research –Talking of demand, it’s always worth researching the student market in the area you’re planning to invest in. Check out the costs of the university’s own halls of residence, neighbouring developments and HMOs to see how competitively priced your property needs to be. Does the university have a good reputation and how many students does it attract every year? Do many international students go to the university? International students are prime opportunities for PBSA so if there’s a steady influx every year then that represents a great opportunity to find renters.


Management Company – Most PBSA developments are looked after by property management companies but its always worthwhile checking out their reputation to make sure that they have a proven track record and that there are no serious issues with tenants. If you’re working with a property investment company then ask them about the management company and what’s included in the price you pay.


Off-plan – you will always yield better returns if you invest in an off-plan PBSA development so if you’re working with a property investment company make sure that the planning permission is in place and that all the relevant legal contracts have been drawn up to protect your investment.


PBSA investments are one of the major success stories of 2015 so if you would like to know more about what’s involved, then please get in touch.

17 November 2015
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