Student Accommodation in Demand as Numbers Rise
Parents of many of today’s students might recall grimy shared bathrooms and leaky roofs, but today’s purpose-built
halls are likely to have private en-suite facilities. In fact, accommodation ranks with course and reputation in course choice deliberations.
Students Expect More from Halls of Residence
With UK students paying around £9000 for a degree, and overseas students around a third higher, they are increasingly demanding not only excellent quality teaching and learning facilities but high standards of student accommodation also.
Security and privacy are highly prized, with newly-independent teenagers (or their parents) willing to pay a premium
for peace of mind. Students now sit on University Budget Committees and vote on capital investment. At Exeter, they wanted
upgraded sports facilities, so that’s what they’re getting.
Education is a Global Marketplace
UK higher education enjoys a reputation for quality around the world. While recent immigration concerns caused a
hiccup, the government is keen to remain competitive in the £3 trillion global education marketplace.
The recently published International Education Strategy, seeks to attract another 90,000 overseas students,
particularly from emerging economies, adding to almost 500,000 currently studying here. There is no cap on
legitimate overseas students who “boost our economy and enhance cultural life”, according to Business Secretary
Students are increasingly willing to relocate in the search for the best educational experience, with internationally
mobile students forecast to number 8 million by 2025. Universities, colleges and private institutions are competing
on a worldwide stage.
Student Accommodation Options
Rising standards have led to rising costs, with rents growing 27% above inflation for the past decade, but demand
remains high as students seek the full-on university experience.
Institutions maintain halls mostly for first year students. Living among other students offers financial, social and
security benefits, close to campus with good catering options.
An alternative is the private hall, managed by private companies. These tend to be in the larger university cities and
offer all-inclusive pricing, including contents insurance and utilities.
Sharing a private rented house or flat offers more independence, but demands a significant deposit and a full 12
months’ lease, and utilities must be budgeted for in addition.