More than half of student landlords would consider opting out of the student market if they have the same problems as they did during the last academic year.

After a rocky start to the autumn term, with students late in confirming accommodation and having to lockdown, the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) quarterly report found that 56% might soon look elsewhere for an income.

However, two-thirds say they wouldn’t want to switch to renting to those on Local Housing Allowance, usually for fear of letting to claimants (43%) and the drop in income being too great (31%).

The pandemic hit student landlords’ revenue stream last term as 20% had requests for rent reductions while 19% saw students leaving their properties early.

Rent reductions

The survey’s responses from 243 landlords shows that most granted rent reductions when asked (61%) but that they tended not to grant students rent holidays, with 60% turning down requests.

When the survey was completed in June, almost a third of student landlords expected to lose more than 20% of their business in the next 12 months and a quarter reported that they either had no students signed up or had cancelled upcoming tenancies for the next academic year. Most landlords (65%) reported no problems with lets for this academic year.

The NRLA says: “How universities respond to new measures could affect student landlords and their business at a time when they are hoping to bounce back from coronavirus and potentially disrupt the end of the 2019-20 academic year. Flexibility is required to ensure the supply of accommodation is maintained and sustained.”

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