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International students target shared accommodation

Appetite for student accommodation looks set to be high this summer, supported in part by strong demand from international students, which is good news for buy-to-let landlords investing in student houses.

It would appear that Brexit is not deterring international students, as reflected by the number of people applying to UK universities, especially from countries outside the European Union (EU).

Recent data, released by UCAS (the UK organization that manages applications to British universities), revealed a 3.4% increase in the number of EU students (excluding the UK) applying to study at British universities.

The number of EU applicants increased by 3.4% to 43,510 in 2018, while the number of international applicants outside the EU increased by 11% to 58,450.

The number of applications from China rose by 20%, or more than 2,000 students, and the number of applicants from India rose by 36%, or 1,180 students, while there was a 52% surge in the number of student applicants from Mexico.

Many of these international students are opting for shared accommodation, partly to combat loneliness when they embark on university education in the UK, according to new research.

The study by Housing Hand reveals that many international students arriving in the UK are increasingly opting for Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMOs), which have between three to five bedrooms and shared kitchen and bathroom facilities, enabling them to make new friends and avoid feeling alone. 

Jeremy Robinson, managing director of Housing Hand, said: “Many international students opt to live initially in shared accommodation, so they have time to make some friends and then move to a flat to share, in their subsequent years at university.

“It can be very daunting starting student life in a new country and we have helped thousands find their first property with our UK guarantor service.”

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