As we have entered 2018, we have implemented virtual tours to our student accommodation marketplace, which has grown consistently across the UK. StudyFlats is proud to announce that it is now the first and only international student housing platform to offer virtual tours of its student properties.
StudyFlats was launched with one key objective: to simplify the process of finding student accommodation in the UK for prospective and current international students.
As we are continuously seeking new ways of offering a better service to students, we realised that pictures of student properties are becoming a thing of the past. This led us to the idea of enabling students to view the properties behind their computer or mobile screens prior to booking, specially if they have still not arrived in the UK.
As we introduce this new feature to our student accommodation platform, we have decided to answer a few questions from our audience regarding the new functionality and its benefits.
- What is it all about ?
In the case of StudyFlats, this means a virtual tour of the student properties on our platform and the different room types and facilities offered within those student properties such as different room types, communal areas, gyms or outdoor social spaces.
- Where did you get the idea to do this ?
As we recognised that many students seem to have less trust in photos, we began exploring ways to solve this issue until we recognised that technologies similar to Google Maps would be ideal. Being former students ourselves, we realised that this functionality would have made our house hunting a lot easier if it existed.
- Why is it helpful to students, particularly prospective international students ?
Several reasons; first, it gives you the chance to really see the property for yourself with an easy click on your mouse or a tap on your smartphone screen.
Second, it gives you peace of mind when making a decision on choosing your student home. This is specially the case with international students who are choosing their accommodation in the UK for the first time.
At last, with the growth of the student housing industry, the student accommodation standards have changed dramatically. Many student halls offer a wide selection of different types of rooms. Having the ability to see all the rooms in one click makes it easier to choosing which room suits a student’s preferences the most.
- Does this mean that a viewing is not essential ?
No, not necessarily. Whilst virtual tour of properties provides a very accurate reflection of the rooms and facilities offered, seeing a property in person is advisable if this is an option.
However, as a large part of our student audience are prospective international students who have not arrived in the UK or their chosen city yet, we understand this is not always a possibility. Therefore, we try to add as many images as possible to the student properties on our platform. In addition, our friendly team is always on hand with any questions that you may have; even if we don’t know the answer, we’ll make sure we refer you to the right person who does.
- How does this benefit student accommodation providers ?
This enables our student accommodation associates to demonstrate their properties and their facilities at a closer range to thousands of potential tenants around the world. As mentioned previously, the standards of the student accommodation sector has grown considerably with many offering features such as gyms and cinema rooms within student halls. 360 imagery is a great opportunity for accommodation providers to closely show these facilities to potential student tenants.
- Do you offer virtual tours of all the properties on your website ?
Not yet, as we have just set up the new service. But we do in most major cities at the moment and expect to provide this for all the properties for September 2018 bookings.