Student landlords have hit back after one University urged them to
introduce a blanket rent reduction for their student tenants.
The landlords in Portsmouth had been urged by the University of
Portsmouth's Vice-Chancellor Graham Galbraith to deliver 'fair rent
The Vice-Chancellor said that the University had recognised that students
paying for not using accommodation was unfair and offered a rent reduction
of 80% for those staying in University-owned properties.
However, Portsmouth and District Private Landlords' Association
(PDPLA) responded by saying that landlords had received no financial help,
while universities have been offered bailout loans from the government.
Also, they pointed out, universities are still charging tuition fees for
providing courses online.
Help student tenants individually
The PDPLA has now published the
exchange of letters on its website
and their chairman, Martin Silman, said that landlords should treat each
request for help from their student tenants individually.
In his response, Mr Silman said: "Members have received absolutely nothing
from the government during this difficult time."
He added: "I have student tenants on 50% rent, I have a couple whose
contracts I cancelled as there is no chance that they will return this
year, yet most of my student tenants are paying their full rent and living
happily in my properties - the same as any other year."
The managing director of Accommodation for Students, Simon
Thompson, said: "This issue of students having to pay rent for
accommodation they have signed a contract for is not going to go away.
"The issue is that for most student landlords this will be their only
source of income - and as a sector, we have not received any financial
support from the government."
He added: "This lack of help needs to change if student landlords are to
release students from their contracts or offer rent rebates or reductions."
London's student landlords to get overseas boost
Meanwhile, it has been revealed student landlords in London will be boosted
with the return of overseas students, particularly from China.
According to research by London Central Portfolio, Asian
students are favouring London as their study location.
A spokesman said: "The safe-haven status and a liberal and diverse culture
is attracting overseas students who would have studied in the US
"The UK hasn't seen growth above 5% since 2017, which compares with the
UK's 15% growth in 2019/20."
He added that the number of students from India applying for Higher
Education courses doubled last year – and strong growth is predicted in