The growth in international students in Australia will be a key driver of apartment demand in 2016, according to commercial real estate company, Colliers International.
A recent story in the Australian Financial Review reported that investor interest in apartments may have cooled due to a lending clampdown but the rising international student numbers will fill the gap in apartment demand.
International student enrolments grew by 11 per cent in the first quarter this year, compared to the same period last year, and this is the third consecutive year of growth in international student population, Colliers International’s managing director residential, Peter Chittenden said.
The thriving international education sector in Australia is the nation’s third largest export and is poised for even greater growth,” he said.
“The Australian dollar has fallen by 24 per cent against the major currencies in the last two-and-a-half years. This has undoubtedly stimulated growth in the sector and the demand in residential accommodation for this population.”
As bearish forecasts continue for the dollar in 2016, growth in education export is expected to continue with the lion’s share of the growth provided by China and India, the two top countries with international students.
“The Asian middle class has always valued the Australian education system and now has the capacity to afford it,” Mr Chittenden said.
International students are demanding more private apartments as well as student accommodation.
Sydney and Melbourne are currently experiencing a boom in apartment housing and student accommodation construction, particularly around universities. In Sydney, Fraser Property’s $2 billion Central Park sits opposite the University of Technology Sydney.
There is a spate of apartment construction around Macquarie University in Sydney’s north by Chinese developers Greenland and Country Garden as well as Toga Apartments.