King’s accommodation prices rising by 4 per cent next year
Freshers will have to pay at least £147 a week
Two months ago, maintenance grants were cut. Last week, UCL burned an effigy of their Vice Provost in a protest against extortionate rent prices. This week, King’s College London have revealed the prices of accommodation for 2016/17.
In a percentage increase totalling four per cent, freshers next year will be expected to pay, at the very least, £147 per week.
Speaking to The Tab, the accommodation services said:
“King’s has affordability as one of its highest priorities in these discussions which take into account the cost of operating its accommodation while also generating a fund to support refurbishment programmes. The operating costs include heating, electricity, water and the cleaning and manpower, from our security and cleaning contractors to reception staff, management and residence life team. King’s pays its staff the London Living Wage (LLW), which is set annually in November.”
King’s College London’s most sought-after residence – Stamford Street – is set to raise its weekly rent from £179 per week to £200 for a standard room.
When asked what the increase of rent money would pay for, King’s said: “A five-year refurbishment programme across the portfolio to ensure rooms are of the required standard to meet students’ expectations. Over the next 18 months, Stamford Street Apartments’ bathrooms, furniture and bedroom flooring are due to be refurbished.
“Following rent setting discussions with the KCLSU in 2014, which set the path for the King’s Affordable Accommodation Scheme, rents across the King’s 5,382 beds will increase by an average of four per cent per annum to ensure it covers the operational costs accordingly. However, some residences will have rents frozen including 207 beds at Champion Hill and 260 beds at Ewen Henderson Court.
“King’s has also scrapped the £300 deposit and is currently the only university in London which no longer takes a deposit for accommodation.
“As part of this scheme, the university has increased the number of rooms available below £155 per week to 940 in 2016/17 from 700 in 2015/16, with half of the portfolio being priced under £189 per week.”
This year, for the first time, King’s is guaranteeing all undergraduates and international postgraduates accommodation. It has been able to do this by acquiring accommodation from third party providers at low cost.
Paloma Lisboa, Head of Residences, said: “We are committed to keeping rents as affordable as possible. We needed to strike a balance between being able to provide accommodation for our students at a range of prices while being able to maintain and improve the stock for current and future students.”
Great Dover Street fresher, Richard Owens, said: “It’s a bit ironic that an initiative called the Affordable Accommodation Scheme took two years to decide that the best way to help the poorest students was by raising the prices of accommodation.”
Student Ambassador, Carly Sinicrope, added: “When I was showing perspective students around SSA, they winced when I told them it was going to be £200 a week.”
While Stamford Street first year Thomas Perkins said: “We should be able to pay for our rooms in sexual favours to the staff, it’s only fair.”
Jenny Straiton, a Neuroscience fresher simply asked: “£200 for Stamford Street? Is the cat included?”
No, Jenny, no it’s not.