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The best university towns for rents and yields

Monday 12 August 2019

Ideal flatmate has created a table of average rents in locations surrounding the top-ranked universities in the UK using data gathered by PropertyData.

Ideal flatmate looked at the average monthly rent for areas surrounding the top 50 universities with the cheapest average rent price surrounding the main campus being Lancaster University, which is also ranked as the seventh-best university in the UK. 

With an average monthly rent cost of £598, Lancaster is ideal for tenants and is closely followed by the University of Aberdeen, where the average rent per month is £602.

Even though the University of Lincoln is ranked at number 42 of the top 50 performing universities, it joins Loughborough and Durham in the best five for affordable rental prices for tenants.

The average monthly rent cost around Lincoln comes in at £628, followed by Loughborough at £689 per month, ahead of fifth-ranked Durham’s £693.

Nottingham (£728), Leicester (£737), Swansea (£767), Dundee (£784) and Liverpool (£784) also make the top 10 for the most affordable rental prices surrounding the top 50 university campuses.

The top five worst universities for tenant rental affordability are – unsurprisingly - all in London and are listed as:

1) Imperial College London, average monthly rent is no less than £4,142

2) The London School of Economics and King’s College London are tied with rent working out at £3,159 per month

3) University College London and SOAS University of London are also tied with an average rental cost of £2,431

4) Oxford University £1,495 per month.

5) Cambridge University (the UK’s top-ranked university) £1,491 per month

High rental costs might be a barrier for students, but they can be a bonus for landlords looking to invest in the buy-to-let market.

LSE and King’s offer the joint lowest yield at 2.04 per cent followed by Imperial with 2.52 per cent while the University of Bristol joins both University College London and SOAS with yields of just 2.94 per cent.

Edinburgh, Nottingham Trent, Leicester, and Dundee offer the best options in terms of rental yields for UK landlords. All four provide yield upwards of seven per cent with Edinburgh on top at 7.77 per cent while Liverpool follows these investment hotspots with a 6.94 per cent yield. 

Leeds also makes the top 10 with rental yields at 6.80 per cent followed by Strathclyde (6.64 per cent), Northumbria (6.58 per cent) and Newcastle (6.58 per cent). 

Aberdeen completes the top 10 with yields at 6.22 per cent.  

Tom Gatzen, Co-founder of ideal flatmate said: “So-called ‘university towns’ like Leeds, Nottingham and Warwick – where such a large percentage of the population are students – tend to be reliable for landlords in terms of yield, as they offer consistent demand and short vacancy periods which provide a consistent income stream.”