Housing providers: ‘Students with housemates are happier’

It’s better for students to live in a room with a shared kitchen and shower than to live in a studio, say student housing providers. In their opinion, the number of rooms with shared facilities shouldn't decrease any further.

photo iStock / DGLimages

According to Kences, the sector organisation of social student housing providers, in the context of combating loneliness and stress amongst students it hasn’t been a good development that the share of room tenants dropped from 58 to 52 percent over the past eight years, whereas the share of students renting a private studio rose from 12 to 23 percent.

Get on well

This is because students who rent a room are significantly happier, Kences claims based on further analysis of the recently published National Student Housing Monitor, in which 75 percent of the questioned room tenants indicated they get on well with their housemates. For the students living in a studio – i.e. without housemates – only 42 percent said this about their neighbours. They have a higher chance of ending up in social isolation, Director of Kences Jolan de Bie already emphasised last autumn.

More lucrative

Nevertheless, more and more studios are being built because these are far more lucrative for landlords. Thanks to rent allowance, they can charge tenants a much higher rent.

If students living in rooms were eligible for financial compensation as well, this would ensure a better balance between the cost of renting a space with shared facilities and that of renting a studio, as well as make it more appealing to build rooms.

Kences has also voiced concerns about a decrease in the number of rooms with shared facilities that are being rented out commercially. Last year these jointly accounted for 53 percent of the available housing.

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