Unite Students, the UK's leading manager and developer of student accommodation, has exchanged contracts to acquire a development site in Leeds on a subject to planning basis.

The site, located in the city centre near to the University of Leeds and Leeds Beckett University, will provide a home for over 1,000 students. The total development cost is expected to be c.£80 million and will be funded from internally generated sources. The new building is expected to be open for the 2020 academic year and deliver a yield on cost of 8%.

The transaction reflects Unite’s strategy of aligning its property portfolio with high-ranking universities where student numbers are growing whilst underpinning further earnings growth and visibility.

The University of Leeds achieved a gold TEF rating in 2017 and was named ‘University of the Year’ by The Times University Guide. The site would increase Unite’s Leeds portfolio to 4,470 beds, serving a student population of 58,000, and further enhancing Unite’s operating efficiency in the city. In the last five years, Unite’s occupancy in the city has been 99% with over 1,200 beds subject to nominations agreements with Leeds universities.

Richard Simpson, Group Property Director, Unite Students said:

“Leeds is a strong performing market with two high quality Universities. Unite has maintained a 99% occupancy rate in the city over the past five years, signalling we have room to expand and there is demand for the quality, affordable student accommodation we provide. We are confident the site in Leeds - subject to planning approvals – will be a great addition for Leeds’ growing number of students.”

For further information, please contact:

Unite Students

Joe Lister, Chief Financial Officer Tel: +44 117 302 7005
Candice Macdonald, Head of Communications Tel: +44 7525 592521