With student tuition fees rising, maintenance loans decreasing and the overall cost of living in student halls or private accommodation generally high, the issue of money (or the lack thereof) is one that most students face during their time at university. Surprisingly, though, a new study has found that nearly half of students say that their rent represents good value for money.
The survey, which was conducted by Glide Utilities, was published alongside a new report called What Students Seek which investigates what students look for in their shared accommodation. The figures show that 49% of students surveyed are happy with the amount of rent they pay for their letting, with the average weekly rent standing at £95, the same amount recorded in June 2014. Three quarters of students also said that they were satisfied with the quality of their shared housing, although this represents a year-on-year decline.
The What Students Seek report is extremely useful for letting agents and landlords because it provides detailed information about what features/items students most desire when seeking accommodation. In this year’s survey, it was revealed that fast internet is the most sought after item, with 83% of students indicating that this is something they look for specifically. Inclusive bills followed closely in second with 74% of students saying this is essential to them.
The survey also found that 61% of students want double beds, while 59% want big, functional communal rooms. Moving down the list, 55% of students considered location as a vital detail when it came to letting, with many students wanting to live close to their university. Finally, 31% of students said that they look for good transportation links when choosing a property.
Those surveyed also revealed what their biggest pet peeves were with landlords. A ‘lack of response on maintenance issues’ topped the list at 39%, followed by a ‘lack of communication’ at 29%; 28% of students also highlighted that landlords don’t do enough to maintain the property. Finally, 20% of students complained about ‘intrusive or unannounced visits and inspections’.
James Villarreal, CEO of Glide Utilities, commented on the figures, saying that while most students are happy with the quality of their accommodation, the fact that this figure is gradually falling is something that cannot be ignored. He states that the main reason for this decline isn’t because the condition of student accommodation is slipping, but because students’ expectations are rising. He suggested that the findings will help letting agents and landlords better understand students’ needs and make the right practical changes.
At CPS Homes, we take pride in offering students only the best in housing across Cardiff. The majority of our properties have been redeveloped over the past few years and we’re proud to have fitted many properties with extra features such as plasma TVs. If you’re looking for student accommodation in Cardiff, we can help. Take a look through our range of properties online or pop into our Woodville Road office in Cathays where a friendly member of staff will be able to answer any questions you may have. What’s more, if you’re a landlord who rents out student accommodation, did you know Rent Smart Wales is launching in autumn 2015, meaning every landlord in Wales - whether they use a letting agent or not - will need to register?