Student Housing Preferences – What Do Students Really Want? 

Friday, May 2, 2014

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Have you ever wondered what amenities and features students are most interested in for their housing accommodations? We have researched some information, in order to answer this question for landlords and property managers of student housing.

J. Turner research surveyed 7,095 students across the United States regarding their housing preferences and produced an insightful report titled, What Millennials Want – Residential Preferences in Student Housing Design and Amenities. We’ve compiled some key statistics and findings from this report, to shine a light on what student renters are most interested in.


Key Findings:


  • 69% of students reported it's more expensive to live on-campus at their school, than it is to live off-campus.

  • If everything was equal between on and off-campus housing expenses, respondents indicated they would be willing to pay an average of $85.01 more per month to live off-campus.


Most Important Amenities:

Students were asked to rank the most important amenities with their housing accommodations.


  1. In-unit washer & dryer = 79%

  2. Each roommate has their own bathroom = 68%

  3. Extended cable / Wi-Fi included = 54%

  4. Parking included = 42%

  5. Big refrigerator = 27%


Distance to Campus:

Students were asked how far they would be willing to live from campus and their ideal means of transportation.


  • More than half of students surveyed indicated they would rather live close to campus.

- 15% = a few blocks from campus

- 16% = no more than one mile from campus

- 16% = no more than two miles from campus

- 14% = no more than three miles from campus


  • 32% of students were willing to live 5+ miles away from campus.
  • 37% of students said walking was the ideal means of getting to school.


Added Features:

Students were asked how much more they were willing to pay in rent per month for special features.


  1. Open floor plan = $137

  2. 2+ Bathrooms = $123

  3. Large living room = $112

  4. Large kitchen area = $105

  5. Study spaces = $98



Students were asked about how their living accommodations are shared.


  • 54% of students have 3 or more roommates

  • 28% of students said that 1 roommate is the ideal number of roommates

  • 15% of students reported sharing a room with a roommate

  • 37% of students said that 2 bedrooms are the ideal number of bedrooms per unit


Type & Size of Accommodations:

Students were asked about their preferred type of accommodations and the importance of size.


  • 38% of students said their preferred accommodation type is a mid-rise apartment building, followed by community cottage/townhouse at 33%, and single-family home at 13%.

  • 65% of students said accommodation size is extremely important (8, 9, or 10) when it comes to their housing decision (ranked on a scale of one to ten).


The full report can be found at

The Team