Far from the conventional where you each scribble your name on a contract with a seedy Landlord for a contract with a property with no heating and where the running water is slightly black but he doesn’t mind if you play loud music and party till dawn, there are now, a small number of property management companies who are offering large halls style accommodation to students. These are basically halls but not supplied by the university. So, students will pay a one off figure, which will include all bills and will be paid to the property management company. These rooms will only be let to students; they will have similar single rooms with en-suites and communal kitchen and laundry areas. In this way they are very similar to the environment that students will have been residing in at university campus halls.
The advantage to society of such properties is immense. Areas densely populated with students are commonly run down with litter, graffiti and a sub-standard level of housing. Students are on a tight budget and this has been exploited for many years by the Landlord who realised he could cut corners if he shaves a few quid off the monthly rent.
Students are renowned for noisy parties and loud music, often inadvertently destroying communities around them and pushing non-student renters into other areas away from the antisocial antics of those experience freedom from parents for the first time.
If we support this new breed of student accommodation, segregating student housing from non-students, we will be offering a better standard of living to students, with safely maintained properties and clear cut one cost a month bills which reduce the possibility of damage to credit ratings at such an early opportunity in adulthood. We will also, however, be offering a far superior standard of living to those previously forced to live amongst student households. No more late night partying and streets littered with kebab wrappers, no more constant ‘student night’ flyers tempting them to taste test 2 for 1 cocktails at the latest student bar. No more trying to get infants to sleep whilst loud drinking competitions happen on the other side of the wall and no more graffiti on your front door.
Segregating these living styles does not mean segregating students from the mainstream population; it merely means ensuring the best possible opportunity for comfortable and happy lifestyles for all parties. Students like to live a certain lifestyle and that can be made acceptable within areas designated for this behaviour ensuring those not wishing to live in such areas are afforded the opportunity to live in a more peaceful and less disturbed home. More could be done to encourage students to develop within the community, such as volunteering opportunities and projects working alongside others residing in nearby areas.
This new way of student living also offers increased security in perhaps the more vulnerable times of a student’s life, with access granted by keys to communal areas as well as personal keys for individual’s private areas. At a time when young adults are acclimatising to the ways of the world and adult life and are perhaps not as security conscious as they will eventually be, this added security will offer and increased peace of mind – especially to worrying parents left at home concerned about their offspring moving into the big wide world alone!
With increased security, improvements in society, financially clear agreements and single management of large quantities of student accommodations, this certainly looks like the way forward in student lettings and I strongly suspect we will see increasing numbers of companies keen to introduce such offerings to the student market! Watch this space!