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Imperial Rent Increase Announced

Mar 02 2009 11:57
Lawrence Weetman
The cost of renting Imperial College accommodation has had its annual review, with rents rising by 3.9% on average. However, Fisher Hall has escaped the rise.
The cost of renting a room at Fisher Hall remains the same.

Deputy President (Education & Welfare), Hannah Theodorou, passed on details of the rent prices for Imperial Accommodation for the 2009-10 session earlier today, following a meeting with the Committee on Student Residences. The rents are once again classified into different "bands" (A-F) and then into different room types: a system set up by the committee in 2008.

The rent review means that next year, the average price of renting Imperial College Accommodation will be £130.98. 27% of bed spaces will have a rent of less than £102.27 per week, 54% will be less than £118.86 per week and 7% of bed spaces will cost more than £177 per week.

Fisher Hall is the only hall in Central London to escape the rise in rent, with prices sticking at £92.40 per week for the cheapest single rooms and a very low £54.46 for a place in a triple room. This is to "provide a lower cost hall offering". The report notes that refurbishment in Fisher Hall will be carried out in Summer 2009, as planned. Miss Theodorou told Live!, "I am pleased with the freeze in Fisher?s rent, providing students with a low-cost accommodation option within walking distance of the campus. This will be happening despite a refurbishment this summer".

Postgraduate accommodation at Clayponds is set to increase by around 5.5% in order to reflect the refurbishment that has been carried out. Anyone living in areas which are still awaiting refurbishment will only be charged half of this increase (this affects 183 of the 330 bed spaces). This leaves the average price rise in these halls at 3.9%.

Rents at Silwood will be increasing by 5.1%, with a standard single room costing £80.41 per week a twin room charged at £133 per week between two people, a couple or family flat being charged at £172.88 per week and a bungalow now being charged at £204.25 per week. Twenty-eight beds at William Penney will be frozen at this year's prices (£72.52 per week), "following feedback from students". The freeze in rent at William Penney leaves the average price rise at Silwood at 3.9%.

In all other halls, the aim has been to widen the price difference between multiple and single occupancy rooms. This means that rents multiple occupancy rooms are being increased by 2.5% and single rooms and flats are being increased by 4.6%. Once again, this gives the average increase of 3.9%.

Living Elsewhere

The report notes that The London School of Economics "is proposing a base increase of 5% with some halls increasing by as much as 12%", which I presume is supposed to make us feel better about the increase. This Live! reporter notices that the report only compares the increase that LSE is putting forward, rather than how the prices themselves compare to those at Imperial College (they could have been much lower before the increase). For example, LSE has beds in twin rooms available at £67 per week in Islington and £75 per week near Tottenham Court Road. Maybe this is something that the report can look at in 2010.

The report also comments upon private housing. It says that whilst there has been a reduction in the average weekly rent for private housing across London, rent in the Kensington area did increase during 2008. The report says that "in any case, it is still cheaper to stay in halls".

The report assumes that students who live in private housing live in Kensington, saying: "An average three bed house in South Kensington has a weekly rent of £800 p/wk or £266 per room. This excludes shared expenses such as utilities that add a further £26 p/wk. A private housing alternative is therefore approximately £292 p/wk for a room compared to £176.47 for a band E single ensuite in Southside."

£ / wk

Band A

Band B

Band C

Band D

Band E

Band F

Studio Premium


Studio Standard



Couple/Family Flat





Single - Premium





Single - En-suite







Single - Standard







Twin - En-suite






Twin - Standard






Triple - Standard



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Discussion about “Imperial Rent Increase Announced”

The comments below are unmoderated submissions by Live! readers. The Editor accepts no liability for their content, nor for any offence caused by them. Any complaints should be directed to the Editor.
Mar 02 2009 19:56

How many students do you know who pay ?292 p/wk?

Actually - could that be the next Live! poll, I pay between ?... and ?... per week for my room. Lets see if college are remotely in touch with their prices!

Mar 02 2009 20:14

What should the bands be? Something like:

  • < ?80
  • ?80-?119
  • ?120-?159
  • ?160-?189
  • ?190+

Or is there a more useful split?

Mar 02 2009 21:01

Is there any word on what College's justification for these price increases is? Which costs are going up? This just sounds like College speeding up the return on investment for Southside & Eastside...

Mar 03 2009 08:49

Must admit that I'm not sure what the going rate really is now (over the years I've payed ?87, ?115, ?110, ?89, ?93, ?83 ex bills), but I'd be tempted to bring those bands a little closer together. I'd guess people are paying between ?100 and ?150pw.

How about: ->99,100->114,115->129,130->144,145->

College doesn't need to justify why they are increasing their prices. They have a captive market with no effective regulation. They can do what they want.

Mar 03 2009 09:14

Come to think of it, it probably makes sense to use COLLEGE'S bands (A-F), suitably modified for 5 options.

Which would be a job for Lawrence...

Mar 03 2009 09:39

Hi there, Ash. :-)

Here are the prices for single rooms, starting at Band A and moving through to Band F.

A) ?96.60

B) ?109.06

C) ?118.93

D) ?135.38

E) ?148.19

F) ?165.76

There's also so called "premium rooms".

C) ?182.49

D) ?188.65

E) ?219.59

F) ?240.52

En-Suite rooms are as follows:

A) ?127.05

B) ?133.56

C) ?142.94

D) ?162.82

E) ?176.47

F) ?205.66

Maybe we could put the a table in the article? I'll email you one.

Mar 03 2009 10:36

?240 pounds per week!! Who can afford that? Brian May?

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