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Record Housing Shortage among Students

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Record Housing Shortage among Students

Reykjavík

From the University of Iceland campus. Photo: Dagbjört Oddný Matthíasdóttir.

More students than ever are on a waiting list for student housing in Reykjavík this year, according to RÚV. There were 2,300 applicants for such housing, and now that apartments have been allocated to students, 1,160 individuals remain waitlisted. Since the fall of 2005, the number of students on a waiting list for student housing has increased by 700.

According to Rebekka Sigurðardóttir, public relations officer for Icelandic Student Services, this increase reflects the current situation in the rental market. There is a lack of housing at a price affordable to students, since most smaller apartments and rooms are now rented out on a short-term basis to tourists.

Boarding houses in Reykjavík, which through the years have housed students during the winter months, are now reserved for tourists. This trend is the most disadvantageous to students from rural communities and to foreign students.

In November, 102 new student apartments will be taken into use, shortening the waitlist somewhat. The construction of another 400 student apartments is planned in coming years.

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