Colliers Launches Student Housing Group

Colliers International plans to capitalize on growing demand in the student housing market with the creation of its National Student Housing Group.

Dorothy Jackman and Travis Prince

By Barbra Murray, Contributing Editor

Seattle—Colliers International plans to capitalize on growing demand in the student housing market with the creation of its National Student Housing Group. The Seattle-headquartered commercial real estate services firm has gotten the group off the ground with two industry experts, Dorothy Joffe Jackman and Travis Prince, at the helm.

Timing is everything and with the student housing market having successfully weathered the economic downturn and demand on a consistent upswing, this sub-sector of multifamily housing is welcoming an expanding stream of investors to the game. Just as the baby boomers have a hand in the tightening of the apartment subsector of multifamily, their children are playing a significant role in the success of student housing. “Student housing still has legs,” as noted in Emerging Trends in Real Estate 2012, a report by the Urban Land Institute and advisory firm PwC US. “The bulging generation-Y tail has about six or seven years to run.”

And Colliers is in for the long haul with the formation of its new division, which will be based in Jacksonville, Fla. Jackman and Prince, who previously inhabited the respective roles of vice president of investments and senior associate at The Jackman Prince Group of Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, come aboard the Colliers team as managing directors. As Colliers asserts in a press release, Jackman and Prince have long been considered one of the top-performing student housing brokerage teams in the country. Jackman has in excess of $540 million of sales under her belt, while Prince has played a major role in the handling of student housing and multifamily assignments valued at more than $500 million.

The two will focus on providing clients with the industry expertise required for maximizing returns in the sale of quality properties in this increasingly popular asset class, as well as advising on premier investment opportunities. In their drive to guide the new group to success, they will rely on a bevy of tools, including extensive submarket research.

“The changes in student housing real estate in recent years—demand for new amenities, changes to campus footprints and residence strategies, scarcity of public funding—all call for more specialized expertise,” Dwight Hotchkiss, executive managing director of client services for Colliers, notes in a prepared statement. “Prince and Jackman are proven leaders in this sector, whose innovation, creativity and leadership immediately place this national group on the cutting edge.”

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