NUS criticises NRLA’s bid to explain impact of periodic tenancies on student accommodation

NUS criticises NRLA’s bid to explain impact of periodic tenancies on student accommodation

0:01 AM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago 10

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A bid by the National Residential Landlords Association (NRLA) to highlight how private rented student accommodation would be affected by a move to periodic tenancies has been criticised by the National Union of Students.

The condemnation of the landlords’ organisation comes after it had written to 22 student unions to explain what will happen under the government’s plans for rent reform.

The letter explains that offering students an assured shorthold tenancy works for both students and landlords – because the landlord can get their property back in time for a fresh cohort of student tenants.

But under plans for periodic tenancies, this would not happen since the tenancy would become a rolling contract without a fixed end date.

Puts a student landlord at a disadvantage

That puts a student landlord at a disadvantage and many of them will probably leave the student accommodation sector if the planned rent reforms are brought in.

The NRLA also highlights that the government is aware of this issue because purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) will be exempt from the rules.

But the organisation’s letter has led to Chloe Field, the NUS’s vice president for higher education, stating that not offering students a periodic tenancy would create an ‘underclass of renters’.

She told one news outlet: “It is wrong that the NRLA is pushing for exemptions for students which would afford them fewer rights than other renters.

“Our research repeatedly shows that the cost of housing is a key driver impacting student mental health so it is disingenuous for the NRLA to imply that the greater protections secured through the bill will bring harm to students.”

‘Healthy supply of homes to rent.’

A spokesperson for the National Residential Landlords Association told “The welfare of students is best served by ensuring a healthy supply of homes to rent.

“Recent images of students queuing to view properties is a sign that there is simply not enough accommodation to meet demand.

“All this is doing is leading to less choice and higher rents.”

The spokesperson added: “The Government’s plans to make all student tenancies open ended or ‘periodic’ would only make it harder to find accommodation.

“It would mean no landlord could ever guarantee that housing would be available for students at the start of each academic year.

“This would cause chaos, confusion and anxiety for students unable to plan where they live and with who.”

The spokesperson continued: “Ministers have already accepted that student housing is a special case by exempting tenancies in private halls of residence from becoming periodic.

“The reasons for doing this in halls apply every bit as much to the wider student market.

“This is why we have reached out to 22 student unions across the country to find a solution that recognises the unique nature of the student market.”

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Martin Thomas

10:13 AM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago

What a dimwit. She'll probably go on to be a human rights lawyer.

Judith Wordsworth

10:46 AM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago

One of the biggest problems students will face if this goes ahead will be the removal of all students council tax exemption IF just one of the HMO is a non-student.

I pointed this out to Alex Chalk MP many months ago in a meeting we had re the proposed Renters Reform Bill and that most of the drafting of this proposed Bill is mainly unworkable, further bashing of landlords and yet another incentive for PRS landlords to avoid student housing like the plague. Interestingly he got out of the PRS in 2019 - I wonder why!

Would I ever rent to someone recently out of student HMO’s? Nope, not ever again, having spent time, money and effort on my properties and gutted to only see them treated as a student let.

Yvonne Francis

11:17 AM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Judith Wordsworth at 07/12/2022 - 10:46
Judith, I just don't understand your comment on Council Tax. I thought if just one was not a full time student Council Tax could be levied on the house, and all the student tenants would be liable. Why exactly do you think Council Tax will be affected?


12:05 PM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago

Chloe clearly does not understand!

Poor students!

Seething Landlord

12:12 PM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago

Chloe Field is simply ignoring the issue and playing to the gallery.

The same could be said of government who are apparently quite happy to accept that students living in purpose built accommodation (usually only available to first-year students) will have fewer rights than those renting in the general PRS.

Where is the outcry about this?

Old Mrs Landlord

13:37 PM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago

I have read, though I can't remember where, that the NUS stance is a result of their officers being drawn mainly from post-graduates, studying for doctorates or masters qualifications. This group prefer to remain settled all through the year in their student accommodation. Many stay on in the university town after their studies and may have married or developed stable relationships in that time. It suits them to remain in their current accommodation now that private rentals are becoming scarce but of course this causes headaches for student landlords and the following cohorts of undergraduates.

Grumpy Doug

14:53 PM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Old Mrs Landlord at 07/12/2022 - 13:37
So effectively, I'm alright Jack, sod the rest of you. Typical champagne socialist attitude!

Yvonne Francis

15:51 PM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Old Mrs Landlord at 07/12/2022 - 13:37Hi, Students staying in their accommodation does not hold water. If a student stayed on, under a Jointly and Severally liable lease, the whole group would have to stay on. If they were joined by other people whether students or working people a new lease would have to be drawn up, and I think the landlord could refuse. This is one of the arguments in the Renters Reforn Bill which I think is absolute rubbish.
Student houses provide a unique experience for at least a year where they can have a greater amount of independance than University accommodation and PBSA's. Its a learning curve. Lets not take that away from them.


16:53 PM, 7th December 2022, About 2 years ago

This has already happened Scotland, and it is a disaster, SNP Couldn't care less .
Students and their families are having a very hard time this year, students being told to not come to uni unless they had accommodation or to take a year out ,I had 30 /40 Groups turning up to each veiwing(open veiwings)
, it becomes very stressful turning away and disappointing so many young hopefuls.
This year I am going to reduce the veiwing to 10 groups maximum.
The situation will be worse as so many landlords have sold up entire portfolios and left the PRS.


19:15 PM, 12th March 2024, About 3 months ago

The stupidity of not only the likes of the NUS and Gen Rent is frustrating but not as stupid as Mr Grove.. A supposed conservative, Mr Grove wants to destroy the PRS by abolising fixed term tenancies to stop about 600 (disputed) supposed evictions by a landlord who refuses to renew a tenancy out of malice. A more sensible way forward would be for all new tenancies to be one year conditional with a landlord able to serve section 21 for a limited time period before the tenancy becomes a permanent assured tenancy...A minority of landlords might chose to churn their tenants every year but it would not be a very viable business model. Any such "churner" landlords would help those who really only need a temp tenancy but won't be able to get one under the proposed RRB. Eg, internees, people on short term technical courses, secondments, etc.

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