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North/South Divide in Property Rents for Students

Students in the UK are likely to face a North/South divide when it comes to renting property new research has shown. Rents for students are also likely to be higher this year than they were last year.

Higher education courses begin next month for those who recently received exam results therefore many will likely be looking for accommodation as the new term begins. However, average weekly student rents have increased from £77.04 last year to £79.42 this year according to online business Accommodation for Students. However, there are some regional differences in rents for students meaning that many students will feel the crunch whereas others will have cash to spare.

Northern cities with major institutions are the best places to stay for students with rents staying the same or falling. However, rents in the South are continuously rising, reflecting the cost of housing in general in this region. In addition, housing in the North for students is more likely to include the cost of bills in their rents making it easier for students to budget.

Overall, the average rental costs in private halls of residence has increased by 1.5% and their rental costs are higher by 63% than student housing. There is a notable North/South divide in terms of rental prices as well as bills for student accommodation. Accommodation for Students has shown that 70% of students prefer the option of inclusive bills as it allows them to budget their finances. This option has increased in availability by almost double since 2008. The addition of bill costs to rental costs averages £5.51 per week in the North whereas it averages £8.08 in the South.

The greatest increases in student rents have been seen in the South with Luton increasing by 20% since 2012 and Chatham increasing by 19%. There have been significant increases in London with the average rental value standing at £129 per week. Northern university locations such as Manchester have an average weekly rent cost of £74 in comparison and Sheffield has an average cost of £69. The cheapest locations are Walsall with an average rent of £48, Stockton at £49 and Wolverhampton at £52.

Demand for places at prestigious universities has likely been the cause in the rent rises however; many universities are now offering incentives to desired students in order to fill spaces. This may, in turn, have an impact on the demand for student accommodation in the near future.

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