The University of Mpumlanga’s number of students are predicted to increase to 50 000 in 2019 and 2020 and the demand for student accommodation far outstrips the supply by a large margin.
According to Carien Brink, Seeff’s Marketing Manager in Nelspruit says that at the moment, the University of Mpumalanga students are accommodated in student residences around White River and Nelspruit, within a 20 km radius from campus.
To assist in the alleviation of this problem, the University is in the process of identifying private accommodation providers who can supply suitable student accommodation.
“It has become clear that private providers will be key role players in order to fill the gap in student accommodation. This in turn has created a big opportunity for landlords and investors in Nelspruit. The opportunity for home owners is to convert free standing homes on large stands that meet the necessary requirements into student residences”.
“Landlords are offered the opportunity to lease their homes to the University at pre-determined rental with the University assuming the risk for occupancy. To qualify the home will be inspected by the University to determine the suitability for student accommodation”.
All service providers need to comply with the regulations to ensure that students are provided with affordable quality accommodation which is academically conducive and sustainable in the future.
“It is the landlord`s obligation to provide furnished rooms with access to water and electricity, internet, kitchen and bathroom facilities with good security features; The Landlord must also provide Electrical and Roof compliance certificates, the Title Deed of the property and Floor Plans approved by the City Council, amongst others“.
“The measurements for single rooms are three meters by three meters at least, and must be furnished to include curtains, a single bed, lockable cupboard, desk, lamp and chair. Double rooms, though larger than single rooms, will vary in size but be similarly furnished. Rental income per student is R2700 per month.”
Seeff in Potchefstroom says this town has reported a large number of new developments aimed at students over the past nine years.
“This in turn led to a decrease in interest in student homes and communes as most of these new developments are within walking distance from campus. These off campus residences consist of bachelor units with private bathrooms and shared kitchen space and fetch a rental of R3800 per month”.
Gerhard van der Linde MD for Seeff Pretoria East says there are many homes in the Hatfield and Menlo Park areas where homes were bought and converted to student apartment units.
“This remains a good investment as long as investors don’t plan on reselling their property in the next two to three years. Rental accommodation in these areas also isn’t limited to students only and it appealing to a broader market.”