What student landlords will need to do post-lockdown

Steve Lumley·27 July 2020·4 min read
What student landlords will need to do post-lockdown
Student landlords are being urged to undertake measures to ensure their accommodation meets the demands of post-lockdown students.

According to Ben Fielding from property inventory software firm InventoryBase, landlords should review their rental properties for meeting their tenant's social and welfare needs.

That's because universities may recruit a similar number of students as last year, but many are looking to introduce online learning and reduce face-to-face interaction.

Also, student tenants will be wary about social interaction post-lockdown.

Mr Fielding points out that this need for social distancing will see student accommodation with larger living spaces being in great demand.

Students looking for an attractive property

Students will also be looking for a more attractive property to live in should there be a local lockdown imposed.

There will also be growing demand for personal bathrooms - or at least having fewer users for the property's bathroom - so student tenants can isolate as much as possible.

Mr Fielding also says that a high-speed Internet connection will become important for students with much of their course syllabus going online and the prospect of virtual lectures means that students will need good Wifi.

He added that it is estimated that 10% of the big student property providers are looking to offer students extra perks to book rooms with them.

Among these extras will be a strong Wifi connection to help make the rooms more desirable.

Mr Fielding also says that students will still want to leave their parental home to enjoy the social aspect of attending university and moving into student accommodation – though social gatherings will be limited.

Overseas students may return to London

Meanwhile, research from Chesterton's reveals that the letting agents have seen rents in the capital fall by up to 15% because student numbers there have fallen.

However, they point out that students may well return to attend university courses this autumn and help rents recover.

The firm's head of lettings, Richard Davies, said: "One of the factors behind the oversupply of rental properties, especially in central London, is a lack of students which has led to rents falling.

"With travel restrictions for many countries lifting, however, we could see students returning and those rents recovering."

With London being home to around 375,000 higher education students, the Higher Education Statistics Authority says that around one in three is from overseas.

Mr Davies points out that overseas students tend to pay much higher tuition fees and will come typically from a wealthy family and have a larger budget for their student accommodation.