Can we justify the real cost of cheap student accommodation?
- Accommodation issues are being ignored by landlord
Does living in cheap accommodation during our studies mean we have to give up basic living standards?
Lack of care and attention from their landlord has left two girls at the end of their rope as they are forced to live with issues that should be top priority for landlords.
The two girls, who have asked not to be named, have been living with issues in their accommodation they have been repeatedly been told would be fixed as soon as possible for the past few months.
The main issue they have been facing is their back gate. It has been broken since they moved in, which means they cannot remove their bins from their backyard. This has led to an overflow of waste right behind their back door.
One girl said: “This is ridiculous! We have asked for this issue to be fixed since the first day we got here.
"There has been minimal effort and response to our calls asking for it to be fixed, it’s been months now and the rubbish is piling up! We’ve been living like this for months and I’m sick of it.”
The issue was claimed to be top priority by their realtor, but three months in and it still hasn’t been resolved.
Another issue is the lack of heat in the house. With only the landlord having access to the heating system, the girls are forced to bear the harsh winter cold until the heating comes on for a short period at a set time.
The lack of heat is causing the walls in the house to become damp, which has led to mould growth on the windowsills and walls.
The second girl said: “The heat issue is probably worse than the rubbish. We sit in a freezing house with mould growing on the walls and no matter how hard we try to fix the problem ourselves it just doesn’t go away. We’re both just cold and annoyed all the time now! It’s frustrating coming back from work or uni to a house with so many big issues.”
It can be said that the girls are not the only students facing issues in their accommodation, which leads to the question of how much we’re willing to give up or deal with in order to pursue our education?
With the price of university alongside city living being quite steep, students tend to choose cheap accommodation to help save money to spend on other things they may consider to be more important than a heated house with a functioning back gate.
But should we be condemning landlords for not committing their time to each individual household they rent to students? Probably not, but we should hold them accountable for not paying attention to real issues such as the ones these girls are facing. Just because the rent is cheap, does not mean that students should be subjected to living conditions that could end up harming their health.