Students in Edinburgh are already trying to ensure they find the perfect place to live during the next academic year – almost nine months before their studies begin.
Leading letting specialist Braemore Property Management has seen an unprecedented increase in demand from students eager to sort out term-time accommodation in September, and has already taken dozens of enquiries over the last month from young people looking for their next rented flat.
The firm says that because there is a shortage of traditional student flats in Edinburgh, undergraduates are making enquiries about renting new homes earlier than ever.
And although there has been a recent increase in the number of properties being put up for let by “reluctant landlords” – people who have bought a new home but have been forced to rent out their old property after failing to sell it – this has had little effect on the number of student homes, as few of these new properties have HMO legislation.
Colette Murphy, Director at Braemore Property Management, said: “Although there are a lot of reluctant landlords putting properties up for let in Edinburgh at the moment, there is still a shortage of traditional student flats that have HMO legislation. Therefore, we’re seeing students planning many months ahead to secure their desired accommodation.
“The demand for four and five bedroom properties has always been fierce with students looking to get in early and secure the best ones.
“We are getting several calls every day from students looking to see what is available, but we are telling them all that they will have to wait for another month before they can put down a deposit. We have to check with all of our current student landlords to make sure they want to continue renting out their properties before we can put them up for let for the coming academic year.
Braemore Property Management, based in Dundas Street, is one of Edinburgh’s leading letting agents and boasts a portfolio of 850 properties in the Capital worth more than £250 million.
Colette adds that although many reluctant landlords have recently put larger properties on the market, the majority of these are looking to sell up once the economic conditions improve and do not want the extra expense of applying for an HMO license to rent it out to students.
She said: “For reluctant landlords who plan to keep their property on the rental market for the next few years and whose property is in the right location a student let could be a good way of generating income. Those in their second or third year are generally reliable, responsible, sign up to 12 month tenancies and have UK-based guarantors. Students tenants are also prepared to pay a good rent level for the right place”.
“Those people who have put a larger property on the market should consider applying for an HMO licence and be open to the idea of having student tenants. As long as their property is in right location it could be very desirable to students looking for a home for the next academic year.”
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