Landmark Properties is riding high on student housing, with $3B worth of projects expected to rise over the next three years.
The Athens-based firm, which has a new project in the heart of the college town at the site of a historic hardware store, has more than $1B of projects in the works. And much more in its pipeline. We chatted with Wes Rogers (second from right with Hillstone Construction’s Frank Hill, Johnson Marlowe’s Spence Johnson and TSB Capital Advisors’ Tim Bradley at a recent Grateful Dead concert) about the firm’s work and future pipeline.“We just feel like all these universities—even in major metropolitan markets—are underserved with student housing,” Wes says. While still multifamily, student housing is different in that each bedroom is subrented. And Wes says that can actually help developers achieve a better SF rent rate than a traditional apartment. Among its current and recently delivered projects are some of its largest ever undertaken: The 829-bed Retreat at Blacksburg at Virginia Tech; the 801-bed Retreat at College Station at Texas A&M University (here); and the 787-bed Retreat at Gainesville at the University of Florida.
Closer to home, Landmark is underway with The Mark at Athens (here). While Wes declined to comment, numerous industry watchers say the firm has been scouting sites in Metro Atlanta for a new student housing project as well. “We feel very confident in the student housing market,” he says, noting its existing portfolio is 97% leased. “It’s almost a counter-cyclical play. While Landmark has typically quickly sold projects once completed, Wes says given long-term valuations, the firm may keep more on its books to reap future rent growth.
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