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Student Accommodation: Everything You Need to Know

Student Accommodation: Everything You Need to Know

Student Accommodation: Everything You Need to Know

Student accommodation can be a difficult thing for students to deal with. For many people, it is the first time that they’ve been away from their families and friends. It can be tough to deal with as many people need new ways to stay in touch with their friends and family at university, but you can learn so much at university yourself by moving out.

Student accommodation is thought to be a difficult area for students to think about, as you become more accustomed to the world of understanding student bills, rent and university essentials, luckily we’ve got you covered with our bumper guide to student accommodation:

How Do I Apply for Student Accommodation?

When you accepted for university, your university will often offer you the choice between university halls and accommodation – choosing the right student accommodation is essential and very particular is an individual need. You will be required to go through the Student Accommodations Office.

What is the Student Accommodations Office?

The Student Accommodations Office will be a part of any university and will handle any and all accommodation queries that you may have. They will have a lot of different places for you to stay, whether they be flats or houses or they be student halls themselves. The Student Accommodations Office will need to be contacted as soon as you have been accepted to university, as only then will you be able to sort out your housing situation. You’ll tend to find that most universities will operate the first-come-first-serve operation, and it will be difficult to get in ahead of those that have already sorted out their accommodation, we recommend you visit your institution during university open days to view the range of accommodation that is available.

How Do I Apply for Private Housing at University?

If you take a private house, or a student house, you will need to speak to the Accommodations Office. Student house viewings are highly recommended, do not just look at pictures online, go visit them yourself, remember, you’ll be living there for the next year! The Accommodations Offices will often have a lot of different alternatives available for you. We recommend that you join as many Facebook groups related to your university as possible, this enables you to speak to people attending or will be attending the same institution. There is also the possibility of connecting with people that are also in need of student accommodation – you can also gain some advice about the local area and about your potential new housing situation, too. Before any of this, however, you should speak to your Student Accommodations Office and see if they can point you in the right direction.


How Do I Apply for University Halls at University?

As we said above, this is usually offered to you by your university, this will be decided by your budget as well. You will need to speak to the Student Accommodations Office to sort this out. Unfortunately, this will be your responsibility and you will need to do the majority of the chasing to get this sorted, so the sooner you can jump on this, the better it will be for you!

What Do I Do if I Miss Out on a Place in Halls?

This is a fairly common occurrence. Many students either apply too late, which usually happens on account of having to apply through Clearing. The best thing for you to do is to once again use the Student Accommodations Office, try and organise as many viewings as you can possibly get to and join as many Facebooks as you can. Many people find that missing out on student halls isn’t the end of the world as you’re able to find yourself some new accommodation which may be better suited to you and your situation.

Can I Live at Home When at University?

Of course, you can! This isn’t Nazi Germany! You can stay at home if you so wish, it will save you a lot of money in the long run, just one of the reasons why living at home during university is a benefit.  Obviously, we don’t recommend living at home if you go to a university a long way away, this is better if you live in the vicinity of the university that you will be studying in, you don’t want to have to commute for three hours every day! However, making friends at university will mean that you or your homesick friends can stay around either’s house. This will also save you a lot of hassle too!

What are Private Student Halls and How are They Different from Normal Student Halls?

Well, student halls are owned by the university. With private student halls, the setup is similar to halls managed by universities, but it’s owned by a private company. This means that the rates can fluctuate in either direction, with private halls you can have WiFi added in and you can also see yourself closer to the nightlife of the city too, which is always nice. Students are not always sure what to expect when living in university halls, there will always be different reviews from different students, the best advice would be to view all the options available and make the best choice that brings you, as an individual, the most benefits.


Do Private Student Halls Cost More than Normal Student Halls?

Not necessarily. Of course, there will be circumstances that will mean that they will cost more, but more often than most, you’ll see that the cost will be less in some cases and will often even be the same figure as it would be for normal halls! We recommend that you speak to your university and to the Student Accommodations Office as well, this will get you a good idea of what you’re going to be paying.

What Should I Look For When Applying for Student Accommodation?

It depends on what your needs are. The best thing to do is, of course, to look for something that has an easy access to shops or local markets. You don’t want to have to trek for 20/30 minutes to be able to get yourself some bread and milk. That being said, you should also see if there is anything that has something you’re looking for, for example, if you’re someone who enjoys going out and enjoys nights out, you should look for something related to that too, just make sure that the essentials are close by. You probably won’t want to live too far away from your university either, having to get public transport or having to have to walk for forty minutes-a-day won’t do you any favours.

Does the Price of Student Accommodation Change Depending on Where I Study?

Unfortunately, yes it will. The price of living in a city like London will put your costs up dramatically compared to living and studying in a rural university. That being said you shouldn’t let it put you off, the cost of accommodation will always be difficult to manage as you’re a student and will be most likely operating on a limited budget, so keep things in perspective and don’t be downhearted by the price of the accommodation. However, the upside of this is Student Finance recognise the location and the prices the accommodation, as a result of more expensive accommodation, the bigger student loan you are borrowed, so don’t be put off by a big city move.

Do All Halls Come with an En-Suite?

No.Many halls have en-suite bathrooms available for their students, but a fair amount of them will have shared bathroom facilities. This is par-for-the-course somewhat and unfortunately, the facilities will not always be in the best of conditions. The best thing to do is to check with your Student Accommodations Office and see if you can get a room with an ensuite if you want one, but it will most likely be on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Are There Communal Kitchens in Halls?

Yes. Nine times out of ten you will find that halls will have a communal kitchen. It’s not always the most convenient of situations, mainly because a lot of students won’t always clean up after themselves – although this means there will be more pots and pans to share with each other, so there are benefits. The size can vary too, depending on where you’re staying, you can see that the kitchen may only fit three people or may fit up to six, again this can be a positive, cooking and cleaning with more people can save you time, money and you can make more friends!


Is There a Waiting List for Accommodation?

Of course, there are! Plenty of people apply to a university and then drop out, also many people are generally on a waiting list and then apply elsewhere for other accommodation, which can free up some space for you and what you want. However, our advice would be to not rely on the waiting list, be prepared to be let down and don’t delay plans to get into accommodation, just because you are on a waiting list.  

So there you have it! A bumper guide to student accommodation, remember that you’re not guaranteed a place in the house or halls of your choice, but you are in with a chance of getting what you need for you, so be sure to get in early and get as many viewings in as you can, good luck!

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