Sunday 17 December 2017

Students scramble for a place to stay amid soaring rents

The market for student accommodation is now 'structurally under-supplied'. Stock Image
The market for student accommodation is now 'structurally under-supplied'. Stock Image
Charlie Weston

Charlie Weston

The chronic shortage of student accommodation means new units coming on stream next year will cost as much as €920 a month to rent.

The number of student bed spaces in the capital has failed to match the rise in student numbers, according to new research from estate agents.

This means high-quality new accommodation to be completed in Dublin this year will have weekly rents that start at €230 for single rooms with en-suite facilities.

The pressure to find somewhere to live means students may have to agree to sign up for a longer lease than the 36 weeks of term time they normally agree, according to the Knight Frank research.

It found the numbers of full-time students in Dublin has risen by a third over the past 10 years.

Some four out of 10 students are based in Dublin.

Read more: Councillor claims regulation needed to stop 'ethnic cleansing' of neighbourhoods because of students

This means the market for student accommodation is now "structurally under-supplied".

Existing purpose-built student schemes can cater for only 13pc of the student population in the city.

This works out at just under 10,500 units in the capital city for a student population of around 80,000.

"In an international context, this is extraordinarily low," researcher John Ring wrote.

In London, 30pc of the full-time student population has access to purpose-built student accommodation.

"The shortage of bed spaces in Dublin is putting upward pressure on rents with new-build student accommodation expected to achieve average weekly rents of more than €230," the report stated.

The chronic shortage of accommodation is expected to create a scramble for places to stay in the next academic year. Knight Frank found weekly rents in private developments for students range from €170 to €260 for a single room.

For beds provided by third-level institutions, average rates were found to be lower and range from €114 to €192 per week. However, this is up 10pc compared with the previous academic year.

The chronic shortage of student accommodation has brought specialists in the building of units for students into the market, the research indicated.

There are now more than 7,000 private student beds in the pipeline, with more than half of these currently under construction. Most of these are in the Dublin area.

"A number of significant schemes are nearing completion with 1,508 beds expected to be delivered by year-end," it said.

Despite the surge in supply, Knight Frank forecasts the demand and supply dynamic in the sector is "likely to remain imbalanced for the foreseeable future".

It also suggested that Brexit will increase student numbers in Ireland.

Irish Independent

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