February 14th, 2017
For almost as long as universities have been around, attendance has often meant moving away from home and living in accommodation provided for you by the institution. This is still the case today but, increasingly, the dominance of university-owned housing is being challenged by privately-owned alternatives.
The figures for 2016 are not in yet, but 2015 saw approximately £5.8bn worth of student accommodation traded on the open market, and the figures for 2016 are unlikely to be less impressive than that.
Skylines of cities across the UK are being changed rapidly by a glut of student accommodation being built by private developers. Older buildings such as theatres and town halls are also being repurposed and renovated into high quality accommodation. The number of options available to students is growing all the time, and has clearly captured their interest.
A report this month from leading online student letting agency StudentTenant.com has confirmed that January 2017 was a record month for student lettings. Property searches from students grew by a huge 75% in January, highlighting the growth in the sector.
While this can be explained in part by the time of year – with students beginning to look ahead to the next academic year – this does not tell the whole story. Not only was there a 75% increase over the previous month, this figure was also approximately five times the normal January average recorded by the site.
This is only one site of course, but it is indicative of the whole industry which, at present, is expanding at an impressive rate.
As university costs increase, students are understandably looking to get the best possible value for money in every aspect of their experience – including their accommodation. Many traditional university halls are now just as expensive as private accommodation, but living conditions can be anything from ‘acceptable’ to ‘dilapidated’.
Where that is the case, is it really surprising that more and more are opting for private accommodation which offers a first class living experience in areas which are often more desirable? The growth of purpose built student accommodation is remarkable, with both developers and investors recognising that this is a trend which is not going away.
Completed apartments can be found all over the UK which are already tenanted and offer immediate income to an investor.
Looking to invest in boutique student accommodation? Check our property portfolio.