NMHC Report: Dorm Space Unable to Keep Pace with Enrollment

by Katie Sloan

Washington, D.C.  — Good news for most off-campus developments, but not all. 

Washington, D.C.  — Generation Y, the group also known as the millennial generation, is enrolling at universities in such high numbers every year that campuses can’t keep up with the demand for dorm rooms.


This is according to a new white paper published by the National Multi Housing Council’s (NMHC) National Student Housing Council (NSHC). Using data from the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Census Bureau between 2000 and 2010, the report concludes that the 38.7 percent enrollment increase during this decade led to a 21.4 percent growth in the number of students living off campus.


While every state saw enrollment increases, Arizona, District of Columbia, Georgia, Iowa, Minnesota and West Virginia experienced some of the greatest surges in enrollment. Most states have not been able to maintain the same percentage of students housed in dorms. States with the highest on-campus shortages are Arizona, District of Columbia, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, Nevada and Oregon.


Only five states (California, Florida, Hawaii, Maryland and Utah) have been able to provide enough additional dorm beds to maintain dorm residency levels against growing enrollments.


“Many states have huge gaps between the number of rooms they need and the number of rooms they have,” says Jim Arbury, vice president of student housing for the NMHC and author of the report.


“The numbers are in favor of off-campus student housing. They back up a degree of optimism for private, off-campus developers who used to worry that the university might come in behind them and build a dorm. The caveat is that every college is unique. Some may be more in need of housing than others, so developers should continue researching any given school carefully.”


For details, go to www.nmhc.comn.

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