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Unite Releases Its Latest Trading Update

Posted by Richard Ward in

Image courtesy of Flickr, Creative Commons

Unite Students has released its latest quarterly valuation update, reporting a 99% occupancy rate for the 2017-18 academic year.

The student accommodation specialists are close to full occupancy for the current academic year, underpinned by 59% of rooms let via nomination agreements.

For the 2018-19 cycle, the company has already let 66% of its rooms, with 56% being guaranteed by nomination agreements. The number of rooms already taken for 2018-19 represents a slight improvement on the 64% of rooms let during the same time in the previous lettings cycle a year earlier.

At current levels, 2018-19 sales support Unite's outlook for 3.0-3.5% rental growth on a like-for-like basis.

At the end of 2017, Unite UK Student Accommodation Fund (USAF) had its portfolio independently valued at £2,233 million, an increase of 2.5% in the quarter and 5.6% over the full year. Meanwhile, the London Student Accommodation Joint Venture (LSAV) saw the valuation of its portfolio increase 5.2% on the quarter and 9.2% on the full year to £1,159 million.

The increase in both funds valuations were driven by rental growth and yield compression, with rents across the whole portfolio increasing 3.3% year-on-year.

Elsewhere, during the final quarter of 2017, Unite Students acquired a 1,000-bed development scheme in Leeds on a subject to planning basis and also secured permission for the 600-bed New Wakefield Street site in Manchester.