The final instalment of ULI Turkey’s Advanced Real Estate Courses Programme took place on 9th June, 2015 at YEM the Building Information Center in Istanbul. The course was on the topic of student housing investments.
The course was created following a 2014 course on alternative real estate investments after attendees expressed a great deal of interest in the topic. Student housing is a relatively new development trend in Turkey. The content of the course was planned to inform the audience on international best practices and trends, investment priorities, new investment opportunities, legislation governing student housing investments, and problems in the implementation phase.
The programme started with a tour in Studio Santral Campus at Istanbul Bilgi University, a modern, newly-opened student housing complex. The programme continued with the video presentation by Wooter Onclin, the foundation manager of The Class of 2020, an international platform for student housing investors, developers and operators with partner organisations all over Europe. Their annual conference is the leading event in this industry in Europe. Onclin discussed the student housing industry in Europe and the Netherlands, how deals are financed, product examples, and lessons learned.
After Onclin’s presentation, was a panel comprising local investors and operators. The panel discussed the state of the student housing industry, product examples, governing legislation, expectations for the future, and difficulties faced when investing. Panellists were Murat Yucaoğlu, founding partner and Director General of the Studio Santral of Silahtara Real Estate Investment Corp.; Doğan Kaşıkçı, Director General of the Republika Academic Aparts in Istanbul; and Nevzat Taşkın, founder and the Executive Director of UNIYURT student housing corporation in Istanbul. The course ended with a question-and-answer session.