NEW: More Students Failing Referencing As Cost-Of-Living Crisis Hits Sector

The number of students who passed referencing dropped from 50% to 40% this autumn and is likely to fall even further, due partly to the growing cost-of-living crisis, according to a leading rent guarantee firm.

As demand for university places and a lack of suitable homes puts the student accommodation sector under intense pressure, it reports that the tsunami of students meant many needed last-minute support to find somewhere to live.

“Given the current economic pressures, a higher number of applicants are failing referencing and require a suitable guarantor to progress their rental arrangements,” says Graham Hayward, chief operating officer of Housing Hand.

He adds that the number of UK students applying for rental guarantors has almost matched the number applying from overseas. However, of those international students, a higher proportion was from outside Europe as the impact of Brexit makes itself felt.

Accommodation providers have stepped up to help students find places, reports Housing Hand, which has seen a 25% rise in custom arrangements across purpose-built student accommodation, build-to-rent homes and HMOs.

Lack of supply “Many universities are seeking ways to support their students, particularly where a lack of supply in the local accommodation market may exclude many if they were required to pay full accommodation costs up front,” says James Maguire (pictured), its head of sales and business development.

“Additionally, universities are now seeking the inclusion of their own halls of residence in bespoke rental guarantor arrangements with Housing Hand to help level the playing field for those who would otherwise struggle to find an affordable home.”

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