The latest figures from Countrywide have shown that there has been a surge in the number of students and young professionals applying for a UK guarantor to secure accommodation, as a result of rising rental and living costs.
According to Countrywide, rising rents and an increasing number of households renting meant that 2017 was a record year for rent, with the total rent bill rising to £1.8bn.
A recent survey by RICS revealed that, following policy changes such as increases in stamp duty, more landlords are expected to leave than join the market in 2018. RICS members believe that, in consequence, rents are likely to rise by 3% a year for the next five years, outstripping rises in house prices.
New figures from Housing Hand show that over the last 12 months, there has been a sharp increase in applicants for a UK guarantor, with student applications up by 59.77% and working professionals applications up by 155.63%. This is as a result of many landlords and letting agents being forced to either reject tenants who fail credit checks or request them to pay 6-12 months rent in advance to secure the property, which many tenants cannot do.
Jeremy Robinson, Managing Director of Housing Hand comments: “Unfortunately, a growing number of students and young professionals are struggling to secure rental accommodation, as they cannot provide a guarantor or are failing credit checks. With rising rent prices and deposits, many students can’t afford to put down several months of rent upfront.
It is completely understandable that letting agents and landlords are turning away students and young professionals, as they are concerned about rent arrears and many just don’t want to take the risk. However, with Housing Hand standing as their guarantor, landlords and letting agents can rent to a wider pool of secured tenants.
Plus, landlords and letting agents no longer need to worry about rent arrears, as we mitigate all the risks by becoming the potential tenant’s UK guarantor. This ensures that the rent payments are paid in the event of the tenant defaulting on the rent.
Landlords and letting agents who are partnered with us have been able to increase occupancy, due to larger pool of applicants that can now qualify. They have also been able to eliminate the risk of rent loss, due to tenant default, at no cost to them.”
James Foxen from Andrew Reeves, Countrywide comments: “As a branch, we have recently started working with Housing Hand and have quickly found that we’ve converted many more tenants that we would have typically lost previously. This has meant we have been able to offer more students and younger professionals rental accommodation.
Our landlords have been very impressed by the quality and quantity of tenants we can now provide, as a result of widening the pool of available tenants.
Working with Housing Hand has been a great benefit to our business and we have seen a boost in tenants recommending us to friends and family. It has certainly helped us to further enhance our reputation locally.”