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UK rental guarantor service Housing Hand has reported an ‘extraordinary surge’ in business, as a huge number of students race to book their university accommodation at the last minute.

James Maguire, Head of Sales and Business Development, Housing Hand said:

“We’ve not seen a rush like this before.

National Landlord Investment Show – MPU

The summer months are always our busiest period for student bookings, as young people arrange their homes for the coming academic year.

However, this summer we’ve seen a record number of students leaving things to the very last moment before booking their accommodation.

Brexit and Covid have created the perfect storm in terms of delaying decisions around committing to the expense of accommodation for the year ahead.”

Housing Hand is the largest and only award-winning provider of rental guarantor services in the UK. Students from the UK, EU and any other part of the world can use the company as a guarantor for their rent.

This avoids the need to pay rent upfront, as the landlord is provided with the comfort of knowing that the rent will always be covered.

Housing Hand also provides a free House Finder Service, which connects young people with student-friendly landlords and letting agents across the country.

As students scramble to find homes ready for the start of term, universities themselves are doing all they can to prepare for an academic year that looks a great deal more normal than the past couple have.

Different institutions are taking different measures to keep their staff and students safe, with a number of innovative schemes and incentives in place to ensure that as many young people as possible have been doubled jabbed by the time lectures start.

Terry Mason, Group Operations Director, Housing Hand said:

“With the prospect of a more normal academic year finally a reality, students are rushing to find the homes that they need in time for the start of the autumn term.

It’s entirely understandable why so many have left it so late, but it certainly adds to the pressure in terms of getting everything done in time for the new academic year.”

The value of international students to the UK economy is a also poignant topic, after the Higher Education Policy Institute and Universities UK International study showed that just 10 international (non-EU) students learning in the UK will generate £1million of net economic impact.

James Maguire, Head of Sales and Business Development, comments:

“Historically, the UK has always rated very highly for non-EU students, alongside the USA and Australia.

With those two countries still a little behind the UK in opening up to students after the pandemic, the UK is benefiting from a major opportunity.

Here at Housing Hand, we are seeing record numbers of non-EU students using our guarantor services.

The last two weeks in particular have seen last minute arrivals from many countries, including India, the United States, Malaysia and many of the Middle East countries.

This is definitely filling the gap that has been left by the continuing uncertainty Brexit has caused for students from EU countries.”

Terry Mason, Group Operations Director, added:

“Last year, many UK students decided to take a ”year out’’, as the pandemic added uncertainty.

This year, they have enrolled in university courses. It may follow that the European students are taking a year out as the Brexit/fee issue is compounded by the pandemic.

If this is the case, then we will be looking at another bumper year next year.”

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