According to research by London Central Portfolio, students are representing the largest number of new tenancy starts at a staggering 41% in the last 12 months.
There has been a corresponding decrease in new tenancy starts from finance professionals, falling to 21% – the lowest on London Central Portfolio’s records.
Students are outbidding the corporate sector for properties, paying £600 a week for a flat, 7% more than the average market rent of £562.
Naomi Heaton, CEO of London Central Portfolio, said: “The increase in student renters in PCL should be no surprise. Westminster houses three of the best universities in the world; Imperial College, University College London and LSE, and sees 100,000 students visiting a year.
“London has become a magnet to these privately wealthy young adults who are looking for top quality accommodation to go with their top drawer education. With 82% of affluent Chinese families currently planning to send their children to study overseas, this importance of this sectors looks to be going from strength to strength.
“Even as financial markets recover, landlords are increasingly buying into the concept international student tenants. Many have experienced a sophisticated lifestyle: they treat properties with the same care are corporate tenants but the wealth underpinning them is stronger.
“This means they can often outbid professional tenants, offering higher rents, often a year upfront, as parents are keen to install their children in the best, most secure homes.”