Lockdown rent arrangements

On Monday 4 January the Prime Minister announced a national lockdown in England lasting until at least mid-February. The health and wellbeing of students and staff is our first priority at all times.

Following the UK Government’s rules is an essential part of protecting yourself and other people.

In the light of this, we can confirm we have taken the following steps to support our students with accommodation, which replaces previous guidance issued in December 2020 around staggered returns.

Students living in private sector accommodation

We understand that those of you living in private rented accommodation may be experiencing financial difficulties. That’s why, working alongside the Vice Chancellor of University of York St John, Karen Bryan, we continue to lobby our local MPs to ask for support from the Government, for those of you who are unable to use your rented accommodation due to lockdown restrictions. Read our latest letter to the Minister for Universities, from our Vice-Chancellor and our Student Unions.

If you’re facing financial hardship, we’d also like to remind you of the following help and support available:

Students living in University accommodation

Due to the national lockdown and in light of the associated travel restrictions, if you are not using your room between the dates of 11 January (the start of Spring Term) and until the current national lockdown measures are lifted, we will offer a rent credit for any time you have not used your accommodation.

We anticipate the national lockdown and implications for universities will be reviewed again mid-February, where the position for the rest of term may become clearer.

If you are still living in your University accommodation, we expect you to continue to pay for the room you are still using.

We recognise some students may need to return earlier. If you feel your physical and mental wellbeing will be better served by returning to York, or if you do not have adequate study facilities at home (eg good wifi, equipment or study space), you may still return to campus. If you choose to return before mid-February, you will be eligible for a rent credit for the time after 11 January that you have not used your room.

What are rent credits?

Accommodation rent credits will be applied to your accommodation account for the time that you are not using your room, starting from 11 January 2021 until lockdown measures are lifted.

When applied, this credit will be deducted from any outstanding accommodation payments you owe, which means you’ll have less to pay for your final rent instalment on 30 April 2021.

The accommodation credits are a goodwill gesture and do not represent a change to the Terms and Conditions of Residence.

How do I apply for credit?

You will need to complete the form that we send to you in advance of the end of current lockdown restrictions, to notify us of the time you were not using your accommodation during the period of national lockdown.

The deadline to complete the rent credit form will be clear when you receive it.

How much credit will I get?

You will only be credited for the time you have not used your accommodation during the period of national lockdown, starting from 11 January 2021.

Any deductions in the rent will be taken off your final instalment at the end of April 2021.

What happens after the lockdown has been reviewed?

This agreement will be reviewed at the point at which the Government reviews lockdown restrictions, which we anticipate will be mid-February.

We understand that many of you may wish to return to your accommodation if government guidance changes, but are unable to do so currently. We will communicate any further rent decisions at this time.

International students

If you are an international student due to start your studies in January 2021, we understand your circumstances are a little bit different, we will contact you separately as soon as we have arrangements.

Any questions?

If you require any further information please get in touch with the Accommodation team at accommodation@york.ac.uk or +44 (0)1904 322165.