As many as seven out of 10 landlords have revealed they would not rent their property out to students, according to a survey by lettings app SPCE.
Of the 2,000 UK landlords surveyed, most said that they did not trust students and feared their properties would be damaged if they rented to them.
Research by the National Landlords Association (NLA) showed even more negative sentiment towards students, with only 17% of landlords saying they let their properties to student renters.
Seb Klier, campaigns coordinator at Generation Rent, thinks that the discrimination against this section of society will make finding somewhere to live increasingly tough for students. “Housing teams at student unions can play a vital role in ensuring that students aren’t taken advantage of and by developing relationships so that decent landlords can provide good-quality accommodation to students in the long term,” he said.
Students are struggling
With trust and communication key to successful relationships between landlords and tenants, it seems the shortfall works both ways, as six in 10 students questioned as part of the survey said that finding a rental home was more stressful than job-hunting, studying and exams.
Around two-thirds said poor communication from landlords was a significant issue. SPCE CEO Leon Ifayemi commented: “Evidently, students and landlords are dissatisfied by the current state of student lettings, underpinned by a lack of trust and communication between both sides.”
Many see student accommodation as a specialist area, but in fact buy-to-let landlords can make big yields from this market.
Richard Lambert, CEO of NLA, said: “While letting to students is not for everyone, those who do would be surprised by these findings, because student lets offer the highest rental yields and are least likely to experience rental arrears compared to other tenants, such as professionals, couples, or families.”
Last month, St Andrews in Scotland was revealed to be the highest yielding area for student housing.