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Student Accommodation

Universities where students pay the most rent

We all know rent gobbles up a huge chunk of Maintenance Loans – but which students have to fork out the most? And which get the best deal? Use our table to find out!

unis with the most expensive rent

Credit: David Iliff - Wikimedia

Rent costs are the bane of most student lives – as soon as that Maintenance Loan drops in your account, you can guarantee the majority of it is going to be hoovered up by rent costs pretty quickly.

But there's no denying some students have it worse off than others. Depending on which university you choose to go to, the rent costs you'll face can differ drastically.

In our recent National Accommodation Survey, we uncovered which students pay the most in rent, and somewhat surprisingly, not all of the universities with the highest costs are in London.

But where does your university rank on the rent chart? Read on to find out...

Check out our interview a guy whose rent, when combined with his flatmates, was £2,275 for the student house from hell.

Which universities have the highest rent?

student rent cost map

The average amount students pay for rent in the UK is £125 per week – which works out at around £542 a month.

Just like most expenses (including pints!), prices vary around the country, with London coming in on top and the North, Scotland and Wales offering the cheapest rent.

London School of Economics (LSE) tops our list once again, with students paying on average £219 a week for rent – that's a whopping £949 a month and 1.75x the national average!

However, London isn't the only place where students are facing large rents. Oxford and Bath also have high rent prices, with students paying around £144 – £165 and £124 – £168 a week respectively for a place to stay.

Meanwhile, Northern and rural universities tend to offer the best deal on rent. At the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI), students pay on average just £75 a week!

Similarly, students in Wrexham, Cumbria, Teesside, Aberdeen and Shropshire (Harper Adams) all pay under £90 a week for their accommodation.

Search our table to find out where your university ranks!

Rent costs by university

UniversityAverage weekly rent (£)
National average
125
London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)219
Kings College, University of London218
Imperial College London215
University of East London189
University of Winchester176
London Metropolitan University175
University College London (UCL)174
Bath Spa University168
University of Worcester167
Oxford Brookes University165
City, University of London165
University of Reading165
University of the Arts, London163
Goldsmiths, University of London158
University of East Anglia (UEA)157
University of Essex153
Queen Mary, University of London 153
University of Kent151
University of the Arts150
University of West London150
Rose Bruford College150
Aston University147
University of Exeter146
University of Sussex145
University of Oxford144
University of Portsmouth142
University of the West of Scotland140
Ulster University140
Cardiff University139
Royal College of Music139
Queens University, Belfast139
University of Southampton138
University of Cambridge137
University of Hertfordshire136
University of Bolton135
Newman University135
Heriot-Watt University133
University of Surrey132
Brunel University London130
University of Bedfordshire130
BPP University129
Canterbury Christ Church University129
Birmingham City University129
London South Bank University128
Newcastle University128
Ravensbourne University London128
Southampton Solent University127
University of Northampton127
Glasgow Caledonian University126
Liverpool John Moores University126
University of Suffolk126
Manchester Metropolitan University125
London Business School125
City College Norwich125
Nottingham Trent University124
University of Bath124
Kingston University123
University of Warwick123
University of St Andrews122
University of Lincoln121
University of Manchester121
University of Edinburgh121
University of Bristol121
Durham University121
University of Salford120
St Mary's University, Twickenham120
Falmouth University120
Bournemouth University119
Coventry University119
University of Dundee119
University of Derby119
Edinburgh Napier University119
Royal Veterinary College118
Edge Hill University118
Swansea University117
University of Sheffield117
University of Brighton117
Anglia Ruskin University116
University of Greenwich116
Lancaster University116
Aberystwyth University114
York St John University114
Loughborough University113
Cardiff Metropolitan University111
Leeds Metropolitan University111
University for the Creative Arts111
St George's, University of London110
University of the West of England109
Arts University Bournemouth108
University of York107
Middlesex University London107
University of Glasgow106
University of Plymouth106
Staffordshire University105
University of Leeds104
University of Liverpool104
Plymouth Marjon University104
Leeds Trinity University103
De Montfort University, Leicester101
Bangor University101
University of Gloucestershire101
University of Wolverhampton100
Bishop Grosseteste University100
Robert Gordon University100
University of Huddersfield100
University of South Wales (Glamorgan)99
Keele University98
University of Nottingham98
University of Strathclyde97
Sheffield Hallam University96
University of Sunderland95
University of Birmingham95
Buckinghamshire New University95
University of Stirling95
Teesside University94
University of Leicester94
University of Roehampton94
University of Hull93
Abertay University93
University of Bradford92
Northumbria University92
University of Chester92
University of Central Lancashire90
University of Aberdeen89
Harper Adams University88
University of Cumbria81
Glyndŵr University80
University of the Highlands and Islands75

The data has been filtered to exclude universities where there were not enough respondents, or where the results included huge outliers.

Does the Maintenance Loan stretch far enough?

split bills with housemates

With rent prices still depressingly high, many students have complained that their Maintenance Loan just doesn't cover it.

Student rent costs an average of £125 a week, but the average Maintenance Loan is only marginally more – about £138 a week! That leaves just £13 each week for other important living expenses, like eating, paying the bills and buying textbooks.

82% of students told us they want rents capped in line with what the Maintenance Loan covers.

Meanwhile, other students are campaigning to increase the Maintenance Loan.

Last year we reported on a student from Oxford Brookes University who was petitioning the government to give students in Oxford the same Maintenance Loan as students in London receive.

Currently they receive around £2,500 more a year to cover London's higher rent prices, but as our survey shows, students in Oxford are having to cover similarly steep rent costs.

Our city guides for places like Leeds and London have more information on living costs for popular student hotspots. 

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