Students have been “let down” by private landlords in Brighton and Hove according to the Student Union.Oh? How?
A survey by Sussex University's Student Union revealed students looking to rent accommodation can find it a stressful and expensive process.Ummm, newsflash, folks, it’s not exactly a walk in the park for anyone else, either…
In its annual Rate Your Landlord report, based on the response of 1,586 students, the union found a third of students felt under pressure to pay fees immediately in order to secure a house they had viewed.Yes, again, just like anyone else anxious to secure a property. Welcome to reality, kiddies. Get used to it.
Almost half of all respondents received their deposit back in full but among those who had their deposit withheld (either in full or partially) only a small percentage felt the deductions were reasonable.But were they, in fact, reasonable? Who cares how the students ‘felt’ about it?
Sophie van der Ham, Students' Union Welfare Officer, said: “This report shows that students are a particularly vulnerable group of users renting in the private rented sector.
“Often students are living independently of their parents for the first time, and don't have the experience and information needed to make informed decisions about properties.
“Students need specific, accessible and clear information available to them about landlords, letting agents, properties, and their rights.
"There are also inequalities and specific issues within the student population, with non-UK students at a particular disadvantage when they are required to provide a UK-based guarantor to letting agents.”Well, can’t the Union provide that information? What else is it spending its money on?
The union is lobbying for greater regulation of the private rented sector as well as a reduction in the fees students must pay to private landlords and an improvement in property standards.Ah, right. Because if they have to pay more for their accommodation, that leaves them short of union dues money, I suppose?