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By Newsdesk

Tuesday, November 27, 2012.

The average cost of a room in university owned accommodation in the UK doubled in just ten years, new figures from the National Union of Students (NUS) showed today (Friday).

The NUS/Unipol Accommodation Costs Survey, published recently, reveals that the average weekly rent for a room in university owned accommodation in the UK increased by 97 per cent, from £59.17 in 2001/2 to £117.67 in 2011/12.     

 There is also significant variation between weekly rents charged across different rental categories, with providers operating outside institutional links hitting an average of £140.07 in 2012/13, compared to university owned housing at £118.49.

 Overall, the average rent across institutional, nominated, and private halls has increased by 25 per cent in the last three years since the last survey (2009/10).

 In 2009/10 average weekly costs stood at £98.99 but by 2012/13 they had reached £123.96 a week, or £5,244.04 a year.

 Pete Mercer, NUS Vice President (Welfare) said:

 “Student rents have skyrocketed, leaving fewer reasonably priced accommodation options for students from lower and middle income backgrounds who are really feeling the pinch.

 “The responsibility of universities to support their students does not begin and end at the doors of the lecture hall.

 “University heads should urgently be looking at properly planning accommodation supply and capping rent increases to ensure students are not priced out of living in halls.”

 Martin Blakey, Chief Executive, Unipol Student Homes said:

 “Costs of private sector accommodation and educationally provided accommodation have moved much closer together over the last three years.

 “It is important for universities and colleges to acknowledge the vital role they have to play in enhancing access and the student experience by providing distinctive and affordable accommodation for their students within a not for profit framework."

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