Rental Fever in Zagreb Due to the Renovation of Student Dormitories

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A student accommodation shortage for Zagreb this autumn?

Students who have not yet rented an apartment in Zagreb could find themselves in trouble in September, since the demand for student housing at the beginning of the new academic year will be higher than usual. Due to the European University Games which will take place next year in Zagreb and Rijeka, renovation of student dormitories Cvjetno and Stjepan Radić has begun. Therefore, 4534 students who have a right to accommodation in dormitories will have to stay in alternative accommodation until Christmas, reports Slobodna Dalmacija on August 22, 2015.

Still, average rental prices in Zagreb, according to the forecasts of real estate experts, should not increase significantly, but since the cheaper apartments near universities and dormitories have already been taken, only the most expensive apartments will be available in the autumn.

According to rental agencies, the most popular apartments are those in Trešnjevka and Maksimir, while the cheapest can be found in Novi Zagreb. Students on social networks are complaining that they cannot find adequate accommodation and that the money they will receive from the ministry will not be enough to pay for utilities, let alone the rent.

“We have signed the contract yesterday and the renovations will be completed by Christmas. I hope that students will move in at the beginning of next year. The problem with their accommodation is not as large as some are trying to present it, since some of them will use the subsidy to commute, while the rest will somehow get by”, said Vedran Mornar, minister of education, science and sports.

General manager of the Zagreb Student Centre Pejo Pavlović explains that, while the dormitories are being renovated, students who have been forced to move out will get 400 kuna in monthly subsidies. “If you add another 350 to 400 kuna, which is the price they usually pay monthly for a place in dormitories, two, three or four students with 800 kuna per capita can find an adequate accommodation for 2,400 or 3,200 kuna”, said Pavlović, adding that not everybody will seek private accommodation. “Students from nearby cities such as Sisak or Karlovac will surely commute. Some will temporarily move in with relatives and friends, so we estimate that less than 2,000 of them will seek private accommodation. Zagreb has more than 20,000 empty apartments and I am confident that there will be no major problems”, explained Pavlović. “Now they complain, but they do not think about the long-term benefits. When they return to their dormitories, they will be surprised by a new level of comfort.”

Comparisons of rental prices in Zagreb show small changes in the price of apartments larger than 60 square metres, while the smaller apartments have a greater range of fluctuations in prices. “The prices of smaller apartments are always slightly higher in July, August and September, because owners estimate that at that price, they rent apartments for students for the whole year”, said Ivana Beljan from the real estate website.


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