Exeter’s first “co-living” rooms are being advertised to let at The Gorge, a six storey 133-unit block nearing completion on Gladstone Road, at rents ranging from £1,045 to £1,360 per month.
Tenant eligibility criteria for the rooms, which range in size from 18 to 26.5 square metres with a shower, toilet and galley kitchen, include an annual income of at least two and half times the rent.
This means those wanting to rent the smallest advertised rooms in the block must earn at least £31,350 per annum while an annual income of £40,800 is required to rent the largest.
Median annual earnings for Exeter residents in 2022, the most recent year for which figures are available, were £26,324.
Only those earning among the top 20% of Exeter salaries are eligible for the block’s largest rooms – unless they can provide a guarantor who meets the earnings threshold.
The starting salary for NHS nurses is £22,383. Their pay does not meet the minimum income requirement for the cheapest advertised rooms at The Gorge until they reach band five with at least four years’ experience.
The maximum maintenance loan for the living costs of full-time undergraduates is £9,978.
The Gorge is required to offer 27 of its rooms at “affordable” rents to essential local workers. The city council sets these rents at 80% of market rates.
Prospective applicants for these rooms are invited to apply for details: their rents have not been published.
Priced at 80% of the lowest published room rates, the cheapest would still require applicants to earn at least £25,080 per annum.
A band four NHS nurse earning £25,147 would be eligible for such a room, but they would have to spend nearly half their take home pay on rent if they became a tenant.
There are no restrictions on student tenancies at the development, which is promoted as being just two minutes’ walk from the University of Exeter St Luke’s campus.