Struggling to Find Somewhere to Live?
If you’ve managed to get into your chosen university, there’s a pretty good chance they’ll have some
fantastic accommodation options for you, whether it’s university-owned halls, approved landlords or private student halls.
It’s best to contact your university accommodation department as soon as possible, as they’ll be able to tell you more about their housing allocation process and explain their situation regarding room availability.
If you’re lucky, you might be able to secure a last-minute space at your university-owned halls. Not only will this make your life much easier and save you time searching for accommodation, but it’ll also mean you’ll be able to secure the room simply over the phone. Although be aware it’s likely you’ll need to pay a small fee to secure the room, then any other outstanding fees in a couple of weeks.
However, if you don’t manage to get into university halls last minute, don’t worry. There are still plenty of options out there, and your university will do everything they can to help you find a room. Your university housing team should refer you to a trusted third-party provider, advise you on the best places to live, or simply help you through the minefield of tenancy agreements.
Try the Students’ Union
Your Students’ Union is a great place to find out more information about trusted housing agencies, housing tips and finding housemates. Often, they’ll have a guide available about reliable agencies in the local area, and let you know which ones have a good reputation.
Tip! If it has been a few days since you last heard back from your university accommodation office, we recommend chasing up on it as soon as possible. You might feel like a bit of a nag, but ultimately sending out another email or giving them a call is going to be far better than having no accommodation altogether – so keep on top of it.
Student Letting Agents
If you’re hoping to find your dream student home, then an
online student letting agent could be your best bet. On these sites, you can search through thousands of student houses, private student halls, and short terms lets, and book viewings in just a few clicks.
Finding a Housemate
If you’re looking for student accommodation, you’ll probably need to find a group of housemates to book a property with.
Take to social media and join relevant housing groups, post on website forums to track down people in a similar position who might be willing to team up, or use filters to get matched with the right people on a find a housemate tool.
Don’t worry, it sounds more daunting that it actually is. Remember, you’re not the only one looking for last minute accommodation, so why not be the first person to make a move?
Facebook is a good way to find housemates at your university. There’s no doubt that you’ll find a “University of ____ housing” group floating around, populated by fellow fresher’s looking for accommodation. Be sure to join it; you may come across people looking for a flatmate, older students with advice, or simply someone who knows of a relatively inexpensive place nearby with a relatively nice landlord.
Student Accommodation Forums
Student accommodation forums are also great for finding potential housemates that live in your area, or studying at your university. You can broadcast your message through posting a thread on the forums and soon you’ll start receiving responses from students in a similar position. Alternatively, scour the forums for posts from other students, respond to the posts, and soon you’ll be well on your way to booking your student accommodation.
Find a Housemate Tool
If you’re hoping to find likeminded housemates, then the StudentTenant.com “find a housemate tool” is probably your best bet. The specialist tool matches you with people with similar interests and beliefs, extracting answers from important housemate questions to filter potential housemates out: What is most important for your house? How often should a house be cleaned? Do you mind living with members of the opposite sex?
Once you’ve answered the questions and filtered out unsuitable housemates, you can get in touch with the users directly through live chat or direct messaging through the platform.
Ryan Hough writes student accommodation advice for StudentTenant.com, an online student accommodation agency, which advertises thousands of student properties across the UK.