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University of London launches next-gen property rental app

The University of London has launched a next-generation property rental app for students, allowing them to access private rented accommodation – including purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA).

University of London students can now choose student accommodation from over 30 purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) providers, over 30 estate agents and from 600 private landlords – securing and paying for their accommodation directly from the new property rental app. 

The free app will be launched by the University of London’s housing services team, which will let landlords advertise their student accommodation to its students. The university has worked with SPCE, a real estate-oriented software / data company to produce the app.

“We evaluated what our cohort needs most from their student experience in terms of support, and concluded that a more comprehensive, secure digital offering for managing their housing needs was necessary.

“[The University of London] has provided help with property rental for a long time, but by placing the communication online and making it more transparent and trustworthy, we hope that students and landlords will get better outcomes.

Aisling Traynor, head of private housing and advice services at University of London 

The property rental app provides PBSA providers with digital tools that allow them to manage their portfolios – which also includes signing online contracts, collecting rent and a dashboard feature to track their financial performance.

The property rental app provides students with the ability to search for student accommodation from PBSA providers that have signed up to advertise their accommodation. They can communicate directly with landlords in a secure space – and the app deals with deposit, rent, tenancy enquiries, maintenance issues and complaints. 

“We know that many students, particularly our international community, find the hunt for and management of their accommodation pretty stressful. In the aftermath of Covid-19 in particular, our new property platform will eliminate many of the classic time sensitive, paper based and contact reliant elements of finding somewhere to live during study.”

Aisling Traynor, head of private housing and advice services at University of London 

It’s expected that the figure will almost double for the use of this new app, which replaces the less digital solution previously used by the university. With 184,000 students across 16 of the university’s member institutions and nine external partner HE facilities, it’s expected that 115,000 students will have access to the new property rental app – up from 60,000.

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