Students appear to be generally happy with their living conditions and the services provided by their landlords, according to a new National Student Index survey commissioned by student property app bubbleStudent.
Contrary to popular belief that students feel taken advantage of by those they are renting from, the survey found that a conclusive 63% of students were more than satisfied with their living conditions. In fact, more than half of them believe they were getting good value for their rent.
Compared to this, just 7.5% of those surveyed were largely dissatisfied with their landlord’s communication and general behaviour, disproving the notion that student-landlord relationships are strained.
Buy-to-let investors could benefit from the lucrative opportunities that student properties can provide, and despite the public perception, bubbleStudent argues that students are typically reliable tenants with access to a steady stream of income via student loans and grants.
What’s more, the majority of student tenants will also be supported by a parent guarantor, significantly minimising the risk of defaulted payments, while the six-month lead time on contracts helps to reduce void periods.
There are close to two million full time students in the UK, with nearly half of them currently renting from private landlords. The removal of the university admissions cap in 2015 has seen record numbers of students take up places at university, and for investors, students represent a guaranteed market regardless of economic fluctuations.
For students, it can be a challenge to source an appropriate property, and they often struggle with the processes involved in finding and securing accommodation. The findings from the National Student Index highlight the value that students place on good landlord relations when it comes to choosing a property.
“There are many misconceptions about the relationship between student tenants and landlords,” said Felix Henderson, chief executive officer and founder of bubbleStudent. “However, our research has revealed that the majority of students are more than satisfied with general landlord behaviour and the standard of their accommodation, representing a real shift in the dynamic from previous years.”
He said this change is in part due to an increasing awareness of just how lucrative the student market can be, along with improvements to the way these relationships are facilitated and managed.
“We use an app-based service to match students with properties, book viewings, secure contracts and help students make rental payments.”
Henderson concluded: “This virtual proximity has gone a very long way towards helping to remove some of the barriers and pain points for both students and landlords alike, resulting in improved satisfaction across the field.”