According to a report named ‘What Students Seek’, prepared by Glide Utilities, the average student rent per week has remained unchanged in England, in the last two years.
The average weekly rent of students has been static within the £100 - £119 range for the past two years, though it must be said that 15% of the students in London are paying more than £200 a week, whereas 69% of the students in the North East pay below £90 a week.
Considering the fact that students’ expenditure on accommodation is only second to their spend on fees, the finding that rents are remaining static is extremely important. While those who are students at present must be immensely relieved that the rents haven’t increased in a while, this phenomenon could also encourage a lot of people to not abandon their plans of pursuing a higher education.
Even though the rents have remained constant for a while, students are fairly divided over the question of whether their place of residence offers good value for money. Only less than half (45%) of the students answered in the affirmative, while 36% felt that landlords need to understand students better.
On an average, a student shares his/her property with four others. This is a major cause of dissatisfaction; 48% of students prefer to live with not more than two people.
The changes in the society and the way of living also reflect in the needs and demands of students from the landlords. For instance, majority of the students (60%) feel that a television is the least important factor while choosing a place of residence. In fact, after rent, it is fast broadband which is the most important factor for students. It is not impossible to draw a parallel between this and the worldwide movement of consumers from television towards web-based content.
Based on the report, landlords could do the following to improve their chances of letting to students:
1) Provide fast broadband internet.
2) Furnish properties with good storage spaces.
3) Equip the lettings with double beds.
4) Charge rent inclusive of bills.
5) Proper response on maintenance issues.
6) Good conservation of properties.
7) Clear and honest communication with tenants.
As per the report, the university cities in the North East are the best places for landlords to invest as both tenant satisfaction and annual returns are high there. Middlesbrough rentals offer 16.1% annual yield and have a customer satisfaction of 82%. On the other end of the spectrum, the same parameters are 2.7% and 76% respectively for London.