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Investing in Student Accommodation in England | Guide

Investing in Student Accommodation in England | Guide

In recent years, the student housing investment UK sector has grown a lot. Many investors have spotted the chance to make good money here. Choosing to invest in student accommodation in England is very popular now. The need for good student housing is going up because more students are going to university. This guide explains all about student property investment England. It looks into why it's so popular, what problems you might meet, and how to do well in this market. We'll talk about the benefits of purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) for investors. PBSA offers a chance to get in at a fair price and earn money from rents easily.

Investing in Student Accommodation in England

Investors find the UK student housing market very appealing. Institutional buyers are showing a lot of interest. In this market, you can buy anything from studio flats to en-suite rooms (pods). There are options for all kinds of budgets. Typically, student rental property UK can give you 7-8% net income. This makes it a good choice for those wanting steady profits.

In this guide, we will show you the ropes of student flat investment and student halls of residence investment. Our goal is to give you tips and knowledge to make smart choices for success in student letting investment England.

Key Takeaways

  • Student housing investment in the UK has seen significant growth due to rising university enrolments
  • Purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) offers affordable investment opportunities with reliable rental income
  • The UK student property market attracts strong demand from institutional buyers
  • Student rental properties in the UK can generate net income between 7-8% after costs
  • This guide provides insights and strategies for successful student accommodation investment in England

Why Invest in Student Accommodation in England?

Student accommodation in England is a smart choice for investors. The demand for quality housing in university cities is growing. This is thanks to the UK's respected higher education attracting students worldwide. This demand creates a great chance for investors to make steady rental income and good profits from their student property.

Recently, the sector has seen strong growth due to more students needing good places to live. And this trend is expected to continue, as the UK stays a top pick for education. So, investors can earn well from rent and also see the value of their investment grow over time.

High Demand and Consistent Rental Income

Choosing student accommodation in England means tapping into a market with high demand. The growing student numbers keep the need for good quality housing strong. This steady need means investors can count on regular rent from students signing year-long agreements.

Student property is also more stable than regular housing during economic dips. Education is seen as a wise, long-term choice by students, keeping demand up. So, investing in student housing means a reliable income source.

Attractive Yields and Return on Investment

Student accommodations in England often give better returns than regular properties. The mix of stable rent and future profit means investors can earn well.

Reports show that student housing can bring in 5-6% net yields on average. Some top locations do even better. This is usually more than what's seen from regular rental properties.

Big investors are also noticing, adding to the evidence of a strong market. Their interest shows faith in the sector's future growth. Overall, investing in student housing in England could be a wise choice. It offers consistent income, good returns, and potential value growth, creating a solid way to expand and stabilise an investment portfolio.

Understanding the Student Accommodation Market in England

To make the right choice in student accommodation in England, you need to know the market well. There are two main types of places to live for students. We will look at what these are and talk about important student cities and university areas in the country.

Types of Student Accommodation

In England, you’ll mainly find two types of student housing. These are Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMOs) and Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA). They suit different student needs and likes.

  1. Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMOs): HMOs, or shared houses, have been a top pick for students in England. They are usually old big houses split into many rooms. You'll share a kitchen and living area. They are perfect for students who enjoy making friends and living in a lively place.
  2. Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA): In the last few years, more students have shown interest in PBSA. These are new buildings designed for students' modern needs. You'll find things like private bathrooms, fast internet, quiet study spots, and places to keep fit. PBSA meets students' desire for comfort, privacy, and a better standard of living.

Key Student Cities and University Hubs

England is full of cities and areas popular with students. These places offer great chances for investing in student housing. Let's look at some top student cities:

  • Birmingham: With five universities, Birmingham is a leading student city. It's known for its lively mix of cultures, good transport, and varied things to do. Demand for student places in Birmingham stays high because of the city's appeal.
  • Nottingham: Nottingham draws over 70,000 students with its two big universities. Both local and international students choose Nottingham. Its history, green parks, and energetic student life make it a great place for investing in student property.
  • Leeds: Leeds, home to the famous University of Leeds, is vibrant and diverse. It has exciting nightlife, great shops, and lots of arts and culture. More students choosing Leeds means a bigger need for quality housing, making it a good spot for investors.
City Number of Universities Student Population
Birmingham 5 80,000+
Nottingham 2 70,000+
Leeds 3 60,000+

By knowing the different student housing options and picking the right cities in England, investors can make smart choices. This helps find the best properties that match their goals and the needs of students.

Factors to Consider When Investing in Student Accommodation

Investing in student accommodation can bring in a lot of money. But, you need to think about certain things to make sure it's a good choice. Look at the location, the type of property, what it comes with, how much rent you'll get, and if it will grow in value. This will help you make smart choices and lower any risks.

Location and Proximity to Universities

Where the accommodation is located is very important. Places near to universities or just a short way off are popular. Being close to schools makes your place more appealing and always in demand. Also, if there are shops and fun places nearby, it makes your accommodation even better. This is because students love living in places that are easy to get around and that are lively.

Location Student Accommodation Investment

Property Type and Amenities

Choosing the right kind of student home is key. While many like houses shared by many (HMOs), purpose-built student living areas are becoming more trendy. These are places only for students and often include things like fast Wi-Fi, places to study, and gyms.

  • High-speed Wi-Fi
  • Study areas and communal spaces
  • On-site gyms and fitness facilities
  • Laundry rooms
  • Secure bike storage

A home with great facilities attracts the best students and you can charge more in rent. This means more money for you.

Rental Yields and Capital Growth Potential

Looking at how much money you can get back is really important. Student places usually give back more money than regular rental houses. Cities with lots of students usually offer good returns, making them great for investors.

It's also key to see how your investment might grow in value over time. Things like new development and community improvements can boost what your place is worth. Doing good research and talking to experts can help you find places that are likely to grow.

City Average Rental Yield Capital Growth (5 Years)
Manchester 7.2% 18.3%
Liverpool 6.9% 15.6%
Sheffield 6.5% 12.9%

Thinking deeply about where your property is, what kind it is, its features, rental income, and growth potential is key. Doing your homework, being careful, and listening to those who know can make this investment great. It's a thrilling journey to profit and success.

Investing in Purpose-Built Student Accommodation (PBSA)

Purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) is a key area in the student housing market. It gives investors a chance to benefit from the increasing need for student-friendly housing. These projects serve the needs of today's students. They offer comfortable living spaces and important facilities.

PBSA investments can lead to better rental incomes than regular properties do. They usually have smaller rooms, like studios. This makes them more affordable for investors. Students' high demand for these accommodations helps bring in good rental income.

Another plus of PBSA is the regular change of tenants. Students often look for new homes at the start of each term. This means there are usually no long breaks without tenants. So, investors can rely on a steady income.

According to a report by Knight Frank, the UK student accommodation sector has shown impressive resilience, with rental collection rates remaining high at 95-98% despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

These PBSA buildings aim to make student life better. They offer various facilities to enjoy. Some of these are:

  • High-speed Wi-Fi
  • Dedicated study zones
  • Gyms and places to exercise
  • Spaces for meeting friends and relaxing
  • 24/7 security

Such features draw in students and allow for higher rent prices. This improves the profitability for investors.

In the UK, many PBSA investments are completely managed for you. This means someone else takes care of finding tenants, collecting rent, and upkeep. So, investors can earn without the usual landlord stress.

City Average Weekly Rent (PBSA) Average Rental Yield
Birmingham £150 6.5%
Manchester £165 7.2%
Liverpool £140 7.8%
Leeds £145 6.8%

Data sources: Savills, Knight Frank

Looking at the table, cities like Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, and Leeds stand out. They offer good income opportunities for PBSA investors. These cities have lots of students, top universities, and a need for more quality housing.

In summary, putting money into PBSA can be very rewarding. It gives investors a good chance for higher returns. With the steady flow of students and managed services, it's a great way to invest in property without the usual hard work.

Legal and Financial Considerations

Buying student accommodation in England means facing many legal and money matters. It's key for a student property investor to grasp tax rules, stamp duty, mortgages, and what landlords must do. We'll tackle these areas to give you a full look at how student housing investments work in the UK.

Taxation and Stamp Duty

Understand tax rules and stamp duty when you invest in student housing. Taxes on these sites change based on the kind of property and its buying price. If you rent out your property, you'll pay tax on the income. Selling it later might mean more tax too.

Stamp duty is key when buying student flats. In England, stamp duty rates go like this:

Purchase Price Stamp Duty Rate
Up to £125,000 0%
£125,001 to £250,000 2%
£250,001 to £925,000 5%
£925,001 to £1.5 million 10%
Over £1.5 million 12%

Note that these stamp duty rates are true in 2021 but might change. A smart student property investor keeps these costs in mind when planning their investment.

Mortgage Options for Student Accommodation Investments

Getting a mortgage for your student property investment might be harder than for other rental homes. That's because some big lenders think student housing is riskier. But, there are experts out there who focus on loans for these investments.

Think about these things when you check out mortgages for your student property:

  • Loan-to-value (LTV) ratios
  • Interest rates and how long the rate lasts
  • Fees and extra costs from the lender
  • How you'll pay back the loan and if there's any wiggle room

A mortgage broker who knows about student housing can be really helpful. They'll guide you through getting the best loan for your investment goals.

Landlord Responsibilities and Regulations

If you're a landlord of student digs in England, there's a lot you need to do. You must follow rules to keep your student renters safe and sound. Your main jobs as a landlord include:

  1. Keeping the place safe and not full of health risks
  2. Having an up-to-date Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
  3. Meeting fire safety rules
  4. Making sure the house is well maintained
  5. Putting any deposit money in a scheme the government approves

If you buy a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) you might need a special licence. An HMO is where three or more people not from the same family live and share facilities. Licensing rules for HMOs can differ depending on the council, so check what's needed in your area.

"As a student accommodation investor, it is crucial to stay informed about the ever-evolving legal and regulatory landscape. By working with experienced professionals and staying up-to-date with the latest requirements, you can ensure compliance and protect your investment."

To finish, knowing the legal and money sides of student property in England is super important. By understanding taxes, stamp duty, and what's expected of you as a landlord, you're setting up for a good investment journey. This knowledge is your base for creating a top-notch student property investment line-up.

Managing Your Student Accommodation Investment

Being student accommodation investors, strong management is key to our success. It's vital to be proactive and detail-oriented. This keeps our properties attractive and valuable for tenants over time.

Working with Property Management Companies

Working with property management companies is a smart move. They bring special skills for student accommodation. Their services include:

  • Tenant sourcing and screening
  • Rent collection and arrears management
  • Property maintenance and repairs
  • Regular inspections and reports
  • 24/7 emergency support

This partnership lets us be less involved, which many prefer. We get to focus on our investment strategy. Yet, our student properties are still well managed and looked after.

Managing Student Accommodation Investment

Maintaining and Upgrading Your Student Property

Regular maintenance and timely upgrades are a must. They keep our student areas top-notch and appealing to renters. Here are the main areas to concentrate on:

Maintenance Area Frequency Benefits
Interior and exterior painting Every 3-5 years Makes it look clean and protects the building
Appliance servicing and replacement As needed, usually every 5-7 years Helps appliances work well and less likely to break
Flooring repairs and replacement As needed, about every 7-10 years Makes the place look up-to-date
Plumbing and electrical systems Check yearly and as needed Helps avoid problems and keeps tenants safe
Smart technology upgrades When new gadgets come out Makes the place more attractive and can save energy

If we keep the maintenance up and make regular upgrades, we attract good tenants and keep the property value high.

"Investing in regular maintenance and upgrades is more than looks. It protects and grows the value of our investments over time."

Ultimately, effective management is crucial for success in student accommodation investments. Partnering with experts and prioritising upkeep and updates helps. It keeps our investments profitable and appealing to tenants, ensuring their success over the years.

Emerging Trends and Opportunities in Student Accommodation Investment

The UK's student housing market is changing quickly. New trends and chances for investors are popping up. The wants and needs of students are evolving. The market is changing to meet these new demands.

Two big trends now are luxury student housing and living together with flexible rent.

Luxury Student Accommodation

Once, student housing was small and not well looked after. But now more students want top-notch living. This has started the trend of luxury student housing.

Companies like Beech Holdings lead by turning old buildings into modern, green student flats. These places have:

  • High-quality furniture
  • Space for studying and fun
  • High-tech for ease and safety
  • Green tech like efficient appliances

Investing in luxury student housing can pay off. With the right place, you might get more rent and better tenants.

Co-Living and Flexible Rental Options

Co-living and flexible rent are also big now. They create a sense of community and let students live together. This is great for those who like being social.

Many students want rent options that fit their changing school life. This could include short leases or even just paying when they use the place.

Trend Key Features Benefits for Investors
Luxury Student Accommodation High-end amenities, eco-friendly features, smart technology integration Higher rental yields, attractive to discerning tenants
Co-Living Arrangements Shared common areas, focus on community and collaboration Appeals to socially-oriented students, potential for higher occupancy rates
Flexible Rental Options Shorter lease terms, subletting options, pay-as-you-go arrangements Attracts students seeking adaptable living solutions, reduces vacancy periods

Knowing these trends well can help investors do better. Having properties that fit these new demands might bring more money and grow an investment portfolio.

Case Studies: Successful Student Accommodation Investments in England

Looking at how student accommodation investments have succeeded in England can teach us a lot. These studies show the chance for good profits. They also prove the benefits of putting money into student housing near universities in the UK.

RWinvest is a top property investment firm. They sell student homes in places like Liverpool. For example, "The Exchange" offers studio flats from £69,995. They can grab an 8% yearly return. This example points out why buying student houses in the UK's top student cities is a smart move.

"Northgate Studios" in Chester is another great investment by Knight Knox. It has 162 studio flats, starting at £65,000. You could earn 7% a year. This place is near Chester University and the city. That means steady demand and income for those who invest.

The "Apollo Residence" in Liverpool, from Hopwood House, is a good example too. It sells rooms and flats starting at £54,995. You can make 8.5% a year. It's close to Liverpool's main universities. That guarantees interest from the many students in the area.

Development Location Starting Price Projected Net Rental Yield
The Exchange Liverpool £69,995 8%
Northgate Studios Chester £65,000 7%
Apollo Residence Liverpool £54,995 8.5%

These success stories in England hint at the chances for investors to do well. By looking at where, what they offer, and the returns, investors can gain from the student property market. It's a great opportunity to make the most out of the UK's thriving student housing scene.


Buying student homes in England is a smart move for investors. More students are going for higher studies. They prefer purpose-built student accommodation. This means there's a strong need for student houses and good profits can be made.

However, success in this market requires careful thought. Investors need to think about where the property is, what type it is, and the laws and money side of things. Also, how the property is managed is very important. Doing lots of research and getting advice from experts can help.

It's also key to keep up with what's new in student housing. Luxury flats for students, living-together setups, and renting options that fit different needs are becoming more popular. Investors who follow these trends and adjust their plans can do very well in the student housing market.

To summarise, investing in student homes in England can be a fantastic opportunity. With the right knowledge and strategy, investors can make a lot from this growing field. It's all about making good choices, staying informed, and using the best methods.


What makes investing in student accommodation in England attractive?

Investing in England's student accommodation is hot, thanks to rocketing uni enrollments. This makes for a steady, money-making chance for investors. Plus, these digs often pay back more than usual homes, drawing in folks.

What are the main types of student accommodation in England?

Two big types fill England's student housing scene: Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMOs) and Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA). HMOs are a classic, but PBSAs are shining now. They come with new stuff that students love.

What factors should I consider when investing in student accommodation?

Focus on snagging a place near unis; they're super in-demand. Also, pick between HMOs and PBSAs based on what students need. Don't forget to look at rents and growth for a smart choice.

What are the benefits of investing in purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA)?

Buying a PBSA has its perks. They're cheaper, earn more rent, and match the school year perfectly. Best of all, someone else deals with the day-to-day, so it's less work for you.

What legal and financial considerations should I be aware of when investing in student accommodation in England?

Take note of taxes and stamp duty, which change with the property type and cost. Student digs' mortgages can be trickier to get than regular homes. Also, follow strict rules for student homes, making sure they're safe and tick all the boxes.

How can I effectively manage my student accommodation investment?

Rope in, property magicians! A pro property manager sorts everything from tenants to repairs, freeing you up. Keep the place tip-top to pull in tenants and keep the value high.

What are some emerging trends in the student accommodation market?

Some students are upping their living game, wanting fancy digs with great extras. Sharing and flexible leases are also cool today. Keeping an eye on these trends helps you keep your investment winning.

Can you provide examples of successful student accommodation investments in England?

Look at RWinvest for winning student digs in places like Liverpool. "The Exchange" offers studios from £69,995, aiming for 8% rent return. It shows how top locations and quality builds mean good business in uni towns.