What Students Seek 3: Private Rents up for UK Students
By: Glide Utilities
The third annual report into student accommodation trends,1 compiled by Glide Utilities, the specialist student utilities and service provider, has found that private student rentals have risen by £10 a week year-on-year since 2013, or £43 a month, with the majority of students now paying between £360 and £556 a month on private accommodation.
This isn't good news for the two million plus students attending university this year, who are already facing growing debts from tuition fees and living costs. But while today's student pays more, the What Students Seek report found that they're also expecting a lot more in return from their accommodation.
Two thirds (67%) now have bills included as standard in their rent which is the highest ever recorded, 64% of today's students want double beds, while 40% will only consider a room with ensuite facilities. Unsurprisingly the vast majority of students want a solid broadband connection: 85% of students view this as a necessity.
The majority of students anticipate accumulating debts between £25,000 - £50,000, with 23% believing their personal university debt will exceed £50,000 by the end of their studies. Even so, the majority of students remain optimistic about being able to pay back what they've borrowed.
63% believe they'll be able to pay back their debt within 30 years, with only 23% saying they'll never be able to pay it back. These new findings contradict a recent Fiscals study, which reported that around 70% of students would never finish repaying their loans.2
Despite increasing costs and growing concerns around debt, almost half of students (47%), believe that the price they pay represents good value for money, and an overwhelming majority, (76%) are generally satisfied with their accommodation.
Key findings from the 2016 What Students Seek Report include:
- Online v traditional letting agents: More students now use Google to find accommodation over and above traditional routes, such as letting agents (59% versus 25%). 58% use dedicated accommodation websites during their search, and 44% will go to the university accommodation office to find their perfect place.
- Location, location, location: 92% of students rate the proximity to university as the most important factor when finding accommodation. This is followed by the provision of good transport links; 70% rated as very important or important, and the access to good bars and clubs; 46% highlighted as an important factor.
- The price is right: Given the financial pressure students are under, it's no surprise that price is the number one factor influencing a student's decision on where to live. This is followed by the general state and upkeep of the property.
- 3 is the magic number: Although 63% currently share a property with 4 or more other students, on average, students would prefer to live with just 3 other people.
James Villarreal, CEO at Glide Utilities said of the 2016 What Students Seek Report; "In line with national rent increases, the cost for private student accommodation is also on the rise, which must be a consideration for students budgeting their time at university. Avoiding additional costs created by bills is one way students can help to manage their expenditure, which is why we're seeing a greater demand for bills-inclusive rates from students, and more landlords offering this as standard. Our report highlights what students are looking for in their accommodation and how they go about finding the right place to meet their needs."
What Students Seek was commissioned in May and June 2016 by Glide Utilities. 1,010 students responded to the report via www.accommodationforstudents.com, the UK's leading student accommodation website. Download the full report here (https://s3.amazonaws.com/
1. Results taken from a survey of 1,010 students in May and June 2016 as well as year-on-year data obtained from previous surveys and focus groups conducted by www.accommodationforstudents.com.
2. From an analysis by NatWest, July 2016.
For more press information please contact Shelley Doyle or Chevi Davis at Present PR.
Notes to editors
● Glide is a utilities and service provider for shared households. Founded in 2006, Glide was the first company in the UK to offer multi-tenant billing, taking the headache and financial risk out of bills for people living in shared accommodation. Glide's mantra is bills made simple, life made simple. They exist to take the pain and stress out of utility bills, so letting agents, landlords, and tenants have more time to do the things they love.
● Glide is recognised as one of the UK's fastest growing businesses, having entered the Sunday Times Virgin Fast Track 100 in late 2014, and has achieved several accolades for achievement: