Student Housing: analysis and future perspectives | CDP

Student housing: public and private, what does the future hold?

How many university student housing units should be created in order to meet the growing number of off-campus students? And which university cities are most urgently required to act as regards student housing needs? And what is the scope of growth for the sector, also considering the planned interventions by the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRRP)?

The report looks at the needs for student housing in Italian university cities, focusing in particular on the potential demand for places, the private rental market and the dynamics related to the off-campus student population.

Read the report’s key message and download the document for further information.

  • An adequate offer of student housing guarantees accessibility and strengthens the international attractiveness of universities in the area.
  • The NRPP allocates about €1 billion to student housing in order to increase the provision of places, and further provides for a reform plan aimed at encouraging private share capital contributions.
  • The measures envisaged by the NRPP seek to address two issues:
    • the increase in off-campus students recorded in recent years;
    • the structural shortage of university student housing, which currently, in Italy, meets the needs of less than 8% of off-campus students.
  • To ensure that student housing offering is raised to the same first-class standards as European peers (with a coverage rate equal to at least 20% of off-campus students), the current budget must be increased by approximately 100,000 places.
  • Student housing needs have been analysed according to three key factors (potential demand for accommodation, the private rental market and dynamics related to the off-campus student population) and have been identified as particularly urgent in large metropolitan areas (Milan, Turin, Rome, Bologna) and, more generally, in university cities of north-central Italy.
  • The sector's strong development potential is likely to be hindered by three factors:
    • the absence of a specific asset class attractive to investors recognised at system level,
    • the fragmented governance linked to the heterogeneity of the actors involved,
    • and the lack of an incentive framework in fiscal and bureaucratic terms. 
  • Future interventions must be oriented towards economic-financial sustainability, favouring hybridisation models for housing solutions, therefore engendering diversification both in terms of target users and the duration of rental contracts.
Read the brief (Available in Italian)