Cardiff student deposits remain low, particularly in PBSA

CPS Homes properties let within 5 days boards

Research conducted by CPS Homes in October 2021 found that, of the 25 purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) blocks surveyed, 60% don’t require students to pay a security deposit, whilst the remaining 40% ask for an average of just £140 per student.

A student’s cash flow is vital, so this cheap upfront offering of modern, trendy accommodation is incredibly tempting, especially after 18 months of mid-pandemic learning where on-site facilities have had enormous appeal due to everywhere else being closed. Where better to live than a private room with an ensuite bathroom, in a building with a gym, cinema and karaoke room? Not to mention the ‘single tenancy’ option these blocks offer, which give students the peace of mind that they’re only responsible for their own rent and damages, rather than jointly responsible for several others.

Low-to-no deposits aren’t a new thing, of course. We previously asked whether security deposits are becoming a thing of the past and wrote about the pros and cons of both higher and lower deposits. We’ve even had first-hand experience of checking out 450+ student tenancies without a deposit, so we like to think we have a good idea of how properties tend to be left when there isn’t one.

We found that the vast majority of tenants left their houses responsibly, even without a deposit. There were a handful of exceptions to this, where landlords haven’t appreciated the condition the property was returned in and sometimes the attitude of the outgoing tenants when the issues noted were raised with them. Where worth pursuing, these landlords are using the small claims court avenue and are armed with the evidence we’ve provided to them, so this route remains readily available should it be needed.

Next week, we’ll take a look at the hidden advantages of not requesting a deposit, such as a property renting quicker, often for a higher-than-normal rent.

28 October 2021


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