College students, and living options


If you’re the parent of a college/university age student, and you haven’t considered it yet, perhaps now is the time you will. As spring is just around the corner, it’s time to think about what investments you can make, and an investment that shouldn’t be overlooked is buying a home. More specifically, buying a home for your college-aged student to live in during school. Should you purchase a home in your students’ university/college town for them to live in during their schooling? What are the benefits, and drawbacks of investing in a second home? Would this investment bring you a profit? These questions, and many others are part of considering getting a home for your student to live in.


Why buy a home for your student?

College and university are expensive endeavours no matter what you do, but with a little planning, you can find ways to cut corners and minimize costs. One of the ways that can be done would be by purchasing a home for your student to live in while they’re in school. By buying a home, you have a hand in your students’ quality of life, and are involved in their living situation (in terms of sketchy roommates, and sneaky landlords). Your student can learn the responsibility of owning a home, without burdening all of the financial costs (as they would have roommates), as well as ensuring they have a stable living situation, that has fewer costs than finding an apartment to rent throughout their school years.


What are the benefits of buying your student a home?

There are a multitude of benefits that come along with buying a home for your student to live in including, but not limited to: having stability in their housing, fixed expenses, and the rental income that can come from having roommates. If you have more than one student enrolled, having a place they can both live is easier than having them both go apartment hunting. Their friends can become their roommates (and your tenants), which can allow the mortgage to be paid, and then some.


Depending on the size of the home, the income from having tenants along with your children, is that their rent will not only cover the mortgage, but any other maintenance related expenses that your student would need to pay for, or work for, such as the cost of snow-removal. Having a fixed bill payment each month will allow your student to further understand how bills are paid, what the true cost of living is, and how to properly budget. There are so many benefits in the option of buying a home for your student to live in, but a major benefit is removing the costly expense of moving, and storing furniture year after year. In many university towns, students who return home for the summer need to leave their current lease, and pay for 4 months of summer when they won’t be living there. Many students need to store furniture for the summer, which is an additional expense, as well as the gas, time, and travel expenses that come along with moving multiple times.

As students continue to live in your second home, its value will increase, and when your students finish school, you can have the option of selling this home at a profit.


Of course, there is always the question of “What if they don’t stay there?” – perhaps your student may be interested in travelling abroad, or changing schools later on – but that doesn’t take away from the investment you’ve made. If your student chooses to study abroad for a year, you will have tenants in place already and the house will continue to build equity. Investing in a home is always a sound decision that holds a variety of opportunity for you, and your student.


The investment is always best returned to those who intend to hold onto the “second nest” for longer than their children are enrolled in university/college, as it gives them time to build more equity and increase the value/profit that may come from the sale of this home.


Who can help?

In the same manner you would contact your Realtor to look into purchasing a home near you, contact a Realtor to discuss the area, opportunities for growth, and what the rental community is like in that city. It is also an option to purchase a home in Ottawa that is closer to campus for your student to live in – purchasing a second home as an investment is an option that exists regardless of where your student decides to go to school. If your student is going to school out of town, contact a Royal Lepage Realtor in their soon to be “home” to use their extensive knowledge of the housing market, and area in order to make an informed decision. Realtor’s can even help you find tenants for your second nest, should you need them to!