Student and Staff Housing Fees

Jack Kershaw made this Freedom of Information request to London School of Economics

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The request was partially successful.

Dear London School of Economics,

I am requesting the following information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000:

-LSE's relationship to contracted halls, which halls are contracted with what contractor.

-What profit LSE makes from the relationship with these contractors.

-The fees for all student accommodation provided by LSE, according to hall and room type if possible, preferably in the form of a spreadsheet.

-The past fees for all student accommodation provided by LSE since 2008, including according to hall and room type if possible, preferably in the form of a spreadsheet.

-The projected fees for all student accommodation provided by LSE for the next five years, including according to hall and room type if possible.

-The surplus profit the University makes through all student accommodation provided by LSE.

-Minutes from any meetings where rent rises were authorised.

-The number of complaints regarding accommodation provided by LSE has received from students.

-The management costs of providing student accommodation for all student accommodation provided by LSE since 2008. Preferably in the form of a spreadsheet.

-The planned expansion of university accommodation buildings over the next five years.

-What accommodation is provided by LSE to staff.

-What fees do staff pay for the accommodation provided by LSE.

Under section 16, public authorities are required to provide the requester with advice and assistance while processing their request, please consider this in terms of my requests.

Yours faithfully,

Jack Kershaw

GLPD.Info.Rights, London School of Economics

8 Attachments

Dear Jack,

With reference to your request for information under the Freedom of Information Act, please find below the School's response.

1. LSE's relationship to contracted halls, which halls are contracted with what contractor:

Response: LSE has nomination agreements for the following halls with the following companies:

• Lilian Knowles Hall (Sanctuary Students)
• Urbanest Kings Cross Hall (urbanest)
• Urbanest Westminster Bridge Hall (urbanest)
• In addition, Sidney Webb House is managed and operated by Unite Students on behalf of LSE.

2. What profit LSE makes from the relationship with these contractors.

Response: This information is deemed commercially sensitive, so exempt under Section 43(2) of the Freedom of Information Act. The School is in direct competition with other providers of accommodation and to release this information and the information for 12 would provide them with information that could harm the School's commercial interests. This is a public interest test exemption and in applying the test, we believe that the School's ability to maximise profit from residences thereby helping to keep residences as cost neutral as possible outweighs the public interest in transparency of this information, particularly considering that we have provided most of the information requested.

3. The fees for all student accommodation provided by LSE, according to hall and room type if possible, preferably in the form of a spreadsheet.

Response: Please find attached current accommodation fees for 2018-19.

4. The past fees for all student accommodation provided by LSE since 2008, including according to hall and room type if possible, preferably in the form of a spreadsheet.

Response: Please find attached the fees tables for each year from 2011 onwards. For the years 2008-2010, these pre-date our current system, and so we only have high level summary info on the fees. These are listed in the spreadsheet 2008-2010.

5. The projected fees for all student accommodation provided by LSE for the next five years, including according to hall and room type if possible.

Response: Accommodation fees are set annually. In recent years there has been a standard annual 3% increase across accommodation fees.

6. The surplus profit the University makes through all student accommodation provided by LSE.

Response: The most recent copy of our annual report can be found here. Please refer to page 26.

https://info.lse.ac.uk/staff/divisions/r...

7. Minutes from any meetings where rent rises were authorised.

Response: Please see minute below from Finance Committee on 12th December 2017 regards rent increases for 18/19.

Annual report from Residences and Catering Services Division (including a report on the Bursary scheme pilot) – FC/19

52. NOTED:
a) that the student room rent proposal is for an overall 3% increase which is in line with the 2017 Financial Plan;

54. AGREED:
a) that the Finance Committee supported the proposal for an overall 3% increase in students rents;
b) that the Committee welcomed the constructive engagement of the Students’ Union in the issue of affordable rents and delegated the details of the final Bankside rent level, within the overall envelope, to the CFO and the Director of RCSD;

8. The number of complaints regarding accommodation provided by LSE has received from students.

Response: The most recent copy of our annual report can be found here. Please refer to page 18 and 19 for the breakdown on complaints for 16/17.

9.The management costs of providing student accommodation for all student accommodation provided by LSE since 2008. Preferably in the form of a spreadsheet.

Response: Please refer to the School accounts.

https://info.lse.ac.uk/staff/divisions/F...

10. The planned expansion of university accommodation buildings over the next five years.

Response: There are no firm plans for expansion but he School estimates that it requires 6,000 bed spaces to offer accommodation to all 1st year students. We currently have circa 4,600 beds.

11. What accommodation is provided by LSE to staff.

Response: Please see detailed information on our website:

https://info.lse.ac.uk/staff/services/fa...

12. What fees do staff pay for the accommodation provided by LSE.

Response: Please see the response for 2.

If you think that the information provided does not meet your request, contact me on 020 7849 4622 or write to Louise Nadal, School Secretary, London School of Economics and Political Science, Houghton Street, London, WC2A 2AE. We will then review the response to your request and get back to you within 20 working days. You can also contact the Information Commissioner's Office http://www.ico.gov.uk/, though they expect the internal review to be carried out before receiving a complaint directly.

The provision of information by the LSE under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 does not imply a right to copy, reproduce publish or otherwise use such information.

Copying or reproducing such information in any way either in whole or in part without prior written consent may be an infringement of copyright or other intellectual property right belonging to the LSE or a third party.

Yours sincerely,
Rachael Maguire
Records Manager
London School of Economics

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