Student Accommodation – Do I include Bills?
One of the questions we get asked all the time here at Student Housing Lincoln by landlords, is; ”Do we have to include the bills in the rent for our student accommodation?”. The short answer is… YES.
Every student city across the county operates differently. According to studies and rental indexes provided by www.FreshRent.co.uk, students prefer to have all inclusive accommodation. Inclusive accommodation is favourable as it allows students to budget their money, not having to worry about bills for the property.
So what does this mean for you as a landlord now that your property is bills inclusive?
Gas, Electricity, Internet, Water and Sewage are really the essentials. Some landlords like to include Television packages, Netflix or even Sky Movies to help sweeten the deal, however, bills inclusive properties really only require the Gas, Electricity, Internet, Water and Sewage paid for by the landlord. It’s a common misconceptions that the landlord should include council tax within the rent.
Council Tax – Do I Include That?
No. Many landlords believe that because students are exempt from council tax, that it should be included within the rent, however problems arise should all of a sudden the tenant no longer be exempt from council tax. For example, should the student drop out of university, or partake on a part time course, there would be a liability to pay council tax. Excluding council tax from he rent is always recommended, if a tenant was to then be liable for council tax charges, the tenant and not yourself would be required to pay the charges.
What about a ‘Bill allowance’?
In order to effectively manage bills, we suggest a bill allowance for the property. Generally we suggest £55 pppm. (We suggest £65pppm for 3 bedrooms or less). This way we can keep track of what the tenants are using, if the tenants are not mindful of the energy consumption, a gentle reminder can be given to tenants that they would be liable for any usage over the agreed bill allowance or bill cap.
Are you looking for a Student Lettings Agency to help you manage your student property and look after your bills? Call us on 01522 410 646 to discuss our management options.