Students Waste £1 Billion on Unused Accommodation

(Image: Iwan Stone)

Students wasted £1 billion on unused accommodation this academic year according to analysis by Save The Student from their findings in the National Student Accommodation Survey 2021.

Students unable to access their accomodation have wasted £1,621 on average this academic year.

Half of students have struggled to keep up with their rent payments with 60% reporting their health has suffered due to this.

The online survey included responses from over 1,300 students across the UK on their living situations.

Only 32% of students surveyed were offered a discount on their accommodation this year, despite many students being unable to access their accommodation due to ongoing lockdown restrictions.

71% of students surveyed haven’t signed a contract for accommodation next year with 30% of students not planning to at any point.

The UK government have so far distributed £70 million in hardship funding this year to universities to help support students affected by Covid-19, far less than the shortfall estimated in this survey.

Hillary Gyebi-Ababio, NUS Vice President for Higher Education, commented:

“This survey makes clear that the £50 million in hardship funding is a drop in the ocean compared to the eye-watering costs that students are facing. If Westminster did the right thing and matched the hardship funding being made available in Wales for students, the amount needed would be more than £700 million.”

These findings follow a letter signed by the Vice Chancellor sent to private landlords within York and the introduction of rent deductions for students living on campus.