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Shortage of HMO-style student accommodation in many cities - claim

A new survey claims there is a serious shortfall of appropriate quality accommodation for students. 

The research, conducted amongst 500 students and commissioned by The Mistoria Group, claims that only 5 per cent want to live in halls of residence, while 17 would prefer a self-contained room or flat. 

However the overwhelming majority of students - 78 per cent - cite good quality shared housing as their ideal place to live.  

This is despite claims from some high-end property consultants that demand is growing for high quality purpose-built accommodation is on the rise.

The group says there is not enough good quality HMO accommodation for undergraduate students, worsened by a lift in student numbers this academic year. The surge in student demand for accommodation left some students in Reading with no alternative than to stay in a hotel, Misteria claims.

The report also reveals that one in three students say student accommodation is too expensive, while one in five believe it is generally poor quality. Furthermore, the research reveals that 77 per cent of students have budgeted to spend less than £100 per week on accommodation.

“Figures from [admissions body] UCAS show that 409,000 students in the UK were accepted onto higher education courses after A-level results were published in August – a rise of three per cent and an all-time record. The demand for halls of residence is high because in many towns and cities, renting a room in a HMO or sharing a flat is much more expensive” claims Mish Liyanage, managing director of The Mistoria Group. 

The National Union of Students says that amongst those lucky in their search for affordable digs in September, many will face a typical £8,000 shortfall between living costs and income from loans and any maintenance grants.

  • Kenny Sahota

    Nationally, there does need to be a marked improvement on the amount of student accommodation and its quality, but this supply of student accommodation usually comes from buy-to-let landlords. However, recent tax cuts could discourage those from investing, so surely something must be done with regards to this for the amount of student accommodation to increase?

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