‘Private rent costs are up, due to HMOs’

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HOUSES in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) in Buckingham were the subject of a motion to Aylesbury Vale District Council last week from district councillor for Buckingham South Robin Stuchbury.

Mr Stuchbury told the Advertiser several people have contacted him about the growing number of HMOs in the town.

Many of them are being rented to students from the University of Buckingham, which has expanded its student numbers by 20 per cent this year, from 800 last January to 1,000 this January.

Mr Stuchbury asked AVDC to bring forward a report into HMOs in Buckingham, looking at long-term planning and growth in student population in the town.

Mr Stuchbury said: “Though I do appreciate the need for the university to grow and the benefits that come from that, I also have to appreciate the needs of the town as a whole.

“HMOs have increased the cost of private renting and people have approached me because they can’t financially compete with students.

“If we do not get this right now, if the ambitions of the university come to fruition, many people and families are going to be caught in the middle.

“My sincere hope is that this report will go some way to address some of the extreme concerns that I have received as an elected member of the district council.”

The university’s deputy vice-chancellor, Professor Alistair Alcock, said: “The increase in the number of students at the university has encouraged the development of a rental market in the town, which is for the economic benefit of Buckingham.”

Mr Stuchbury’s motion will be referred to AVDC cabinet for a report back to council on July 11.