Monday 20 May 2019

How to Deal with Student Accommodation Complaints, the Compensation Culture and Achieving Closure

When things go wrong in student accommodation, tenants will judge your organisation based on the response they received: were you fair, timely and reasonable? Failing to getting a handle on complaints leads to a poor tenant experience and in the worst cases, a failure to respond adequately is often punished with poor reviews and bad publicity online and on social media. In addition it can lead to external complaint processes like the OIA becoming involved.


Spaces available

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9.45am – 10.00amRegistration (tea and coffee)

10.00am – 10.15am Introduction of Delegates and Issues to Be Raised

10.15am – 10.45am Who Complains and Why?

10.45am – 11.10am Social Media and Complaints

11.10pm – 12.20pm The Techniques of Dealing with a Complaint: How to Provide a Good Response and the role of compensation

12.20pm – 1.10pm Lunch and networking (provided)

1.10pm - 2.30pm Examining Six New Case Studies with Group Discussion and Round Table Analysis of How to Resolve and Handle Actual Cases

2.30pm – 2.45pmBreak (Refreshments Provided)

2.45pm – 3.15pm Practical Pointers on Operating a Complaints System: Visibility, receiving complaints, staff training, reviewing complaints. Victoria Tolmie-Loverseed, Assistant Chief Executive – Standards, Unipol Student Homes

3.15pm - 3.45pm The Role of the Approved National Codes and the Office of the Independent Adjudicator in relation to Accommodation Complaints What kind of complaints are made and how are they resolved. Victoria Tolmie-Loverseed

3.45pm – 3.55pmConcluding remarks and end


This course is led by Martin Blakey, Unipol’s Chief Executive.

Martin Blakey has worked in the student accommodation area for over 25 years with a wide experience of all kinds of student housing, from off-street to purpose built properties. Has worked closely with HEIs, Local Authorities, Governments and major supplier to raise housing standard and widen student choice and expectations. As Chief Executive of Unipol, (a charity focusing on student housing) Martin helped develop a portfolio housing 3,000 students in Leeds, provides services to around 15 HEIs, accredits just over 335,000 bed spaces and operates the main training programme for those involved in student accommodation. The mission continues.



This newly revised and updated one day course covers:

  • What kind of complaints are generated and can be expected in managing student accommodation?
  • how to approach and assess them
  • why complaints get bigger if not dealt with properly
  • why having a strategy is important
  • and how to achieve closure.

The course examines a number of established approaches and techniques that work in showing receptiveness to mistakes, dealing with try-ons and how to understand and handle the growing  compensation culture.

The course is interactive with delegates and:

  • explores a number of actual case studies in group work that demonstrate particular types of problems and approaches that can be taken inviting a critical approach
  • looks at accommodation-related cases being received by the OIA (Office of the Independent Adjudicator) and the ANUK/Unipol National Codes and sees how these are resolved

Cost per delegate

Normal Delegate Rate - £255

Friends of Unipol Rate - £215

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