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CITYMATTERS.LONDON September 2020 | Page 19 PROPERTY subscribe to our newsletter at London’s most affordable university rental markets Spotahome has recently ranked London’s university campuses from highest to lowest average monthly rent THE latest research from the international rental marketplace, Spotahome, has revealed the current cost of renting around each university campus in London and how it compares to the regular rental market. Spotahome analysed average rental data for every university campus postcode in London and found that on average, the cost of renting within close proximity of a university campus is £1,976 per month; 25% more than the overall average London rent of £1,583 per month. When looking at this cost by each ‘main campus’ alone, the average monthly rent increases to £2,060 per month, while this cost falls to £1,905 per month when renting around an ‘additional’ campus. However, at the top end of the London uni rental ladder, the average monthly rent in the SW7 postcode is currently as high as £2,887 per month. This postcode is home to the main campuses of the Imperial College London, the Royal College of Arts and the Royal College of Music, making them the least affordable universities for students looking to live nearby. The neighbouring W8 postcode is home to the additional campus of Richmond, The American International University London. With an average rent of £2,834 per month, it’s not only the fourth most expensive uni campus to rent around in the capital, but it’s also the least affordable of all additional campuses. It also comes in 40% more expensive than the university’s main campus, located in Richmond’s TW10 postcode (£2,030). The European School of Economics, the John Prince Street campus of the University of Arts London, the Cavendish and Regent campuses of the University of Westminster, the King’s College London and the London School of Economics and Political Science also rank within the 10 least affordable universities due to the high accommodation rental prices of the surrounding areas. In fact, the most affordable London campuses aren’t actually in London at all. International students may be surprised to know that the additional campuses of the University of Greenwich (£817) and the University of West London (£952) are the only universities with a rental cost below £1,000 per month but are actually located in Reading and Kent. The most affordable within London is the Avery campus of the University of Greenwich, located in the SE9 postcode and home to an average monthly rental cost of £1,184. UK and Ireland Country Manager of Spotahome, Nadia Butt, said: “We’re in the middle of peak season in terms of students searching for a place to live and while Covid-19 has dampened this to a degree, many are still hopeful that they will be able to either start or return to university come September and October. “Although it would be great to live close by to campus, for those studying in London securing an affordable place close to their university can be a tough ask, even when sharing with friends. “However, with any big move, it’s all about research. It might sound obvious, but knowing which campus you will be at is the place to start. As our research shows it is generally more affordable to stay in areas surrounding additional campuses compared to the main university campus, with the university also providing a link such as a shuttle bus between the two. “Whilst it might be expensive around your university, there will also be far more affordable pockets of the rental market in the vicinity. At Spotahome, we often find students aren’t too disheartened by the higher cost of living near campus. In fact, they tend to prioritise more affordable areas with a good social scene and good transport.” Why mortgages and not stamp duty are holding London’s property market back ONLINE mortgage broker Trussle has found that the stamp duty cut has not had an immediate impact on the UK mortgage market. It also found that the situation is increasingly challenging for those unable to gather more than a 10% deposit. House buyers in the UK looking to take advantage of Rishi Sunak’s stamp duty holiday could be missing out due to a lack of low deposit mortgages available from lenders. The availability of 5% and 10% mortgages has fallen dramatically from over 300 to just 15 providers – according to statistics from Defaqto. While mortgage approvals did rise dramatically in June compared to May – 40,010 from 9,300 – they remain well below the prepandemic levels of 73,700. David Hannah, Principal Consultant and Founder of Cornerstone Tax, an advisory firm specialising in stamp duty refunds, commented on how the government can help to kick-start the private rental sector through investment. “The lack of low-deposit mortgages available for borrowers has seemingly all but wiped out any benefit from the stamp duty holiday to house buyers. For buyers to take advantage of the savings from SDLT, lenders should be passing on savings. “To help these people get on the property ladder, government-backed purchase mortgage SOAS: the university ranks as one of the most affordable for rent. guarantees for borrowers would be a great way to reinstall confidence in the lending market. “If the term of these guarantees were for five years, for example, the inflation of the housing market during the medium term would wipe off any negative equity on those properties. “This would give the market some security again, help buyers, and get the market moving again. “Other stimuli such as an extension of Help to Buy would almost certainly help but reinstating 95% mortgages is almost essential in helping turn renters into buyers. “Guaranteeing their borrowing for the midterm will give lenders the confidence to bring these products back and restart the market.” Demand for parking remains despite ULEZ RESEARCH from high-net-worth (HNW) mortgage broker, Enness Global, has revealed the staggering costs still being paid by some of London’s high-end homebuyers to secure a parking space, despite Sadiq Khan‘s environmental policies. Enness looked at price paid records for parking spaces across London in the year prior to the introduction of the ULEZ in April 2019 and how it compared to the year since it has been operational. The ULEZ scheme does seem to have had some impact, with the number of parking space transactions declining by -30% in the year following its introduction when compared to the year prior. However, this has failed to deter the wealthiest of buyers from paying large numbers of parking spaces. The figures show that in the year following its introduction and despite a decline in transactions, a whopping £98.1m was spent on parking places across the capital, up 39% on the previous year. On average, high-end homebuyers are paying out £397,261 for a parking space, up a notable 97% from £201,169 in the year prior to the ULEZ introduction. Lambeth is home to the highest median parking space property price at present, with just one sale for £895,000 in the 12 months following April 2019. Greenwich also ranks high with the average parking space costing £595,000 in the borough, with Islington (£595,000), Hillingdon (£479,000), Barnet (£339,000), Ealing (£316,000), Kensington and Chelsea (£205,000) and Westminster (£152,500) all home to a median parking property price tag of over £100,000. However, when looking at the most expensive parking space sale by borough, it’s clear that the capital’s high-end homeowners are prepared to spend much, much more. They are undeterred by price or the environmental impact of driving the Capital. The most expensive parking space sold in London is located in Wandsworth, and sold for a cool £14,750,000. In Westminster, the most expensive was sold for £9m, while the boroughs of Kensington and Chelsea (£8.5m), Southwark (£2.6m), Islington (£1.3m) and Tower Hamlets (£1.1m) have also seen the most expensive car parking space sell for upwards of a million pounds in the year following the ULEZ introduction. Group CEO of Enness Global Mortgages, Islay Robinson, commented on the research, noting “The introduction of the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone may have reduced demand for a parking space across the capital, with the number of transactions down a on year. “However, there is also likely to be a Covidrelated influence at play as well, so it will be interesting to see if the number of sales bounces back over the coming months. “Despite Sadiq Khan’s best attempts to stop Londoners from driving, lower transaction levels seem to have bolstered an air of exclusivity around owning a parking space in the capital, and this has pushed the prices being paid for them to new heights when compared to pre-ULEZ levels. It may seem mind-boggling to spend millions on a parking space, but if you have a multi-million-pound house and a fleet of million-pound supercars, having somewhere safe and convenient to house them won’t even require a second thought. Regardless of the cost.”

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