Student Housing Case Study: The Verge Orlando
Location: Orlando, FL
University: University of Central Florida
Campus Advantage acquired The Edge in Orlando, Florida in March 2016. Campus Advantage
immediately implemented a value-add strategy to reposition the asset as a luxury student housing community. This plan included refreshing the brand, creating a new look and feel, updating the amenity package, and upgrading all apartment units.
Catalyst, Campus Advantage’s affiliated marketing firm, worked with the on-site team to rebrand the property with a vibe the student audience could relate to. The property was well-liked by residents and the community, so Catalyst selected the name, The Verge, as a nod to the community’s past. Catalyst also created a new logo, color palette, marketing materials, and promotional items. The new brand was essential to repositioning the community in the market. A VIP pool party successfully revealed the new brand, created buzz in the marketplace, and generated new leads.
Campus Advantage crafted an extensive capital improvement plan designed to exceed students’ growing expectations. Capital improvements in the common areas included a new pavilion grilling area and an outdoor kitchen by the pool, LED lighting, new walkways, doggie waste stations, roof work, upgraded HVAC units, a hammock garden, and a fire pit. The pool deck was resurfaced and features updated pool furniture. The community is now gated, and all amenities require an electronic key to enter. Residential unit improvements included wood-style flooring, black appliances, LED lighting fixtures, ceiling fans, granite countertops, new plumbing fixtures in the kitchen and bathroom, laminate countertops in the bathrooms, 42” TVs, and more. In addition, the IT infrastructure was upgraded with new wireless radios throughout and increased bandwidth, providing much quicker speeds and wireless access to all residents.
Current residents and UCF students appreciated the refreshed brand and property improvements. The Verge achieved 100% occupancy and 9% rental rate growth in fall 2016 before all capital improvements were in place, and achieved and additional 12% rental rate growth and 100% occupancy in fall 2017. Residents are proud to call The Verge home, as evidenced by the 30% increase in resident satisfaction with the accommodations.