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Business News: Brighton Accomodation Agency

BAA

Living Lively

This month, Brighton Accommodation Agency’s company director Dan Lyons discusses students, and the effect they have on Brighton and Hove

“It’s well reported within Brighton that the students have changed the demographic irrevocably, destroying the fragile balance that once existed between tenants and residential property owners; that they are the root of all anti-social behaviour and the sole reason we need street cleaners. However, I think that this is a subject that needs a little more investigation.


At present, Brighton and Hove has a population of around 275,000, and a student population of around 40,000. This equates to around 14.5% of the city’s population. They also have the bulk of the city’s disposable income, as they have the least amount of responsibilities and financial commitments.


Can you imagine Brighton and Hove without this free spending populace? In a period of hard business and recession, can you imagine how many more pubs and clubs, shops and cafés would be shutting down – small businesses that rely whole heartedly on the micro economies that prop up Hanover, Coldean, Lewes Road and the London Road areas? The taxi drivers and bus drivers who rely on ferrying them around, and the suppliers to the various shops and pubs that they frequent? The clothes shops, the music shops, the off licences?


Let’s also now include all the maintenance teams and contractors that work in the student housing sector, and you can see it really is quite important that Brighton and Hove not only keeps the students coming in, but keeps them well housed and entertained as well. In my humble view, Brighton and Hove without students would be, with the greatest of respect, Hastings; lacking the culture and diversity the students bring to any city.


They are high maintenance, opinionated, sometimes a bit precious and forthright – as I’m sure I was at one point as well – but they are also vibrant, interesting, ambitious and exciting young people, people we should be proud have chosen our city over others, people who we hope will go on to do great things.


It’s quite a thing at the moment to look at the negative side of everything, from immigration to the economy, and disregard the positives – the genuine colour and positivity that they bring. The local council have managed to embrace the money making potential of the students by taxing the landlords with various licence schemes whilst simultaneously running down their reputation within the city. Oh, and the parking ... and so we should thank our lucky stars for, at the very least, the economic benefits we all get.


Brighton Accommodation Agency has been working very hard this year to make sure that we help with the housing side of things, pushing our landlords to increase the quality of the properties and our overall service, and keeping both landlords and students in line. This year we have, as we always have, increased our managed portfolio of student houses, and let them all at good profitable rents. We are looking to expand on this in the coming year and see 2015 as a year where we can really strive forward and become a leader in this market. 


If you have a student house or a portfolio of student houses, then we would love to have the opportunity to work with you. Please feel free to contact the office on the details below, and we look forward to January when the student season kicks in again.


Brighton Accommodation Agency, 74 Lewes Road, Brighton, BN2 3HZ 
01273 672999 / info@baagency.co.uk