Reports are showing that properties across Chelsea, Kensington, Knightsbridge and Mayfair are becoming more and more occupied by foreign students and essentially replacing those high-flying bankers. Naomi Heaton, who is chief executive of London Central Portfolio, that owns more than 500 properties in those areas, has stated that students have emerged as their main market, lodging 41% of their accommodation. This is supported by the managing director of Wetherell estate agents who has announced that 35% of his property valuing between £750 - to £1,000 a week is rented to students. He said that there has been a "big upswing in silver-spoon foreign students ["¦] nearly all from the Middle East, India, the rest of Asia, they're coming here to study and they want be in a secure, luxury environment."
Wetherell's letting manager, Darran Simmons, reported to the Guardian that a senior African minister bought a property for £600 a week for his son on the spot, after just viewing three properties that day. Paying the upfront cost of £31,200, Simmons said, "he said he didn't have time to mess around, and he did the paperwork there and then and paid a year's rent up front." Many students can not even begin to comprehend this amount of money on their accommodation, which is not even inclusive of bills. Simmons said: "I don't have £3,000 to spend, and I never will, ["¦] if you're a regular working guy it's quite hard to get your head round those kind of numbers. I'm from Sutton Coldfield and people can't even imagine it when I tell them."