Housing Hunting Information for Landlords in the 2021- 2022 letting season

 

Lynne Wilson, Housing Hub Advisor in Leeds shares her thoughts and advice on the lettings 2021-2022.

Viewings

Make the most of Virtual Tours and ask students to use them as a shortlisting tool!

Ask students to look through your photos and virtual tours and if they really like the property, go ahead and offer a viewing.  You can therefore dedicate your time to good quality viewing appointments with students who are serious about renting your property.  This makes the most of yours and their time.

Virtual viewings

There are a number of different types of virtual viewings currently being used by landlords.  These can be pre-recorded video walk-through and live-streaming video recordings.

 

A virtual tour is a self-guided ‘walk-through' of the property.  These can easily be created using the video function on a smart phone and gives the viewer a good sense of the property.

  

A live streaming video is where the landlord hosts a WhatsApp or FaceTime call and the viewers are added to the video call.  The landlord can walk around the property and the prospective tenants can ask questions whilst seeing the property live.  Call the Hub for assistance with this.

Arranging an in-person viewing

There are still some sensible considerations to make in terms of creating a safe viewing experience for all involved in the viewing process.

  • At the time of the booking ensure that students viewing your property are free of any Covid-19 symptoms
  • Suggest meeting outside the property
  • All visitors should be encouraged to wear a face covering when inside the property.  You could take some with you in case anyone is without one.
  • Ask students to minimise contact with surfaces.
  • Keep a distance from the person conducting the viewing and those who live in the house if possible.
  • Explicitly ask students not to attend the appointment if they have any symptoms or have been asked to self-isolate prior to the appointment.

Check beforehand if any member of the household being viewed, is showing symptoms of COVID-19 or is self-isolating.  If so, an in-person viewing should be delayed.

Timings for house hunting – student behaviour

House Hunting started on 20th November and many students made an early start with their house hunting however, it is anticipated that many more groups will be waiting until the New Year to make their selections. 

Forming groups

Unipol is working with Universities Students’ Unions to provide support to students who are looking to find flatmates or larger groups.  There are Facebook Groups for students to use; this provides a useful space for students to connect and message each other about Househunting.  Unipol will be facilitating some flatmate finding events in the New Year where students can meet face to face in an informal setting.

Students back in their student towns and cities

In contrast to last year Leeds, when many students opted to study access their online courses from home students are now living in their student homes and attending University in person.  

International students

Numbers of international students have increased this year in Leeds and more are expected to enrol in January 2022.  This will lead to demand for accommodation from January to July 2022.  There may be an opportunity to let any spare rooms to this student group in the new year.