Supporting your accommodation needs

The city of York has a diverse range of student accommodation, including Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA), Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMOs) and single occupancy rooms and flats. University managed accommodation, including accommodation offered on our behalf in agreement with external partners, currently totals 7,400 rooms.

We are committed to maintaining varied price bands and rooms that suit all requirements in university managed accommodation and are working with external partners and organisations to encourage a suitable blend of accommodation available off-campus.
We understand that there are challenges, and that our students experience varied standards of accommodation and vast differences in rents in the private sector. To address these issues, we are working closely with the city to get the mix of accommodation types right, and ensure HMO numbers remain strong despite pressures from the Renters’ Reform Bill and the rapid growth in Airbnb lets. We know that there are differing housing requirements within our university community; from new undergraduates, continuing undergraduates, postgraduates and families - our discussions and plans include all students.

What are we doing?

The University has recently appointed a Private Housing Adviser in the Student Hub who specialises in housing matters. Jessica Earnshaw can be contacted to discuss your housing queries via the Student Hub self-referral form.

We know that it can be daunting for some students who are living in private sector accommodation for the first time. We’re here to offer support and advice across a wide spectrum of areas such as contracts, budgeting, tenancy issues, or landlord queries.

Jessica Earnshaw, Private Housing Adviser

To better understand the market, we are undertaking extensive research into the accommodation sector which will feed into our plans. Earlier this year, we co-commissioned a report with York St John University to give a true assessment of the current market for student accommodation in York. In addition we have sent a student accommodation survey to all existing students to understand student preferences and inform our long term planning.

To ease pressure in the private sector off-campus for continuing students, we have increased the number of on-campus rooms available for the 2023/24 academic year. 

The University is lobbying, via the Office for Students and Universities UK, for consideration of student HMO (House of Multiple Occupancy) issues, as the Renters’ Reform Bill progresses. The Reform Bill will see regulatory change, which poses challenges to the HMO market and could see fewer HMO properties being made available.

We are working closely with the City of York Council, York St John University and other partners to formulate strategic solutions to meet the increasing pressure on housing in York. We are focused on providing a rich housing mix, which fulfils our community needs, to meet current and future shifts in supply and demand.

Lisa Woods

The housing market in York has been discussed in depth at the highest level at the University at the University Executive Board (UEB), including our new Residential Accommodation Strategy (RAS) 2022-2027. The strategy outlines our overall vision for accommodation over the next five years both University owned/managed and within the private sector. It also addresses a number of key areas for growth and improvement, whilst at the same time seeking to maintain affordable University owned accommodation for all. The strategy covers:

  • The possibility of building more accommodation on campus and engaging with Student Accommodation Providers to determine their appetite to participate in further development, with key conditions in place to favour the University community.
  • Working with City of York Council (CYC) regarding the Local Plan and facilitating future development.
  • Continuing with agreements with purpose built student accommodation providers in the city.
  • Exploring the possibility of working with York St John University on increasing provision of Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) in the city.
    Exploring how the University can accelerate delivery or influence the affordability and design of new city developments.
  • Working on an analysis of the House of Multiple Occupancy (HMO) market and supply to further inform the strategy relating to off-campus development.
  • Working with the University recruitment team to understand the types of accommodation needed by prospective students.

Ways we can help you

Financial support for existing students

The University of York offers a wide range of financial support, some of which has eligibility criteria.

You may find it more helpful to visit the University website and speak to one of our friendly Student Support and Advice Team, who will talk you through all your options.