With world-class education standards, research-oriented learning and skill-driven careers, the United Kingdom welcome students from all parts of the globe every year. You look forward to having an experience that upgrades your career and promises your personal growth. Once the offer letter arrives, the hustle of apartment-hunting begins. You dream of moving into a pocket-friendly accommodation near the campus with like-minded people that fosters your experience. We are here to turn that dream into a reality by providing a detailed guide to make your move less daunting.
Discover the available student housing options
Most of the University websites provide information on the options, agencies and contacts you could use to find an ideal student housing near the University. There are on-campus accommodation options where students share dormitories maintained by the University officials. The off-campus options can either be private student housing or a homestay. Research in detail about all the options to decide what’s best for you.
1. University halls/dormitories
The dormitories managed by Universities have a separate room for each student with a shared kitchen and bathroom. Once you sign the contract and pay the rent, the officials will take care of any maintenance or repair that needs to be done. The rent usually covers the essential utilities like gas, electricity, water, internet and TV license. Since the dorms are typically located on campus, you have easy access to services like the library, college gym, sports area, and common halls on the campus any time of the day.
Most freshers prefer dormitories since it is a great way to meet new people and build a strong network. Some halls also provide meals, and others have a kitchen where students can cook for themselves. You cannot choose the roommate since the University assigns it. If you are ready to compromise on your privacy, it is a great start to your international life.
2. Private student apartments
Most of the students prefer to shift to a private house with their preferred housemates in the second year. AmberStudent has Purpose-Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) with spacious halls and student-centric spaces on a friendly budget. The private student housings near University of Nottingham, University of Kent, and University of Glasgow are just a click away due to the end-to-end support and the hassle-free service.
In most cases, the rent covers basic amenities like laundry, water, electricity and internet. While choosing a private student hostel, look for the proximity of basic services like transportation, grocery, meals, and hospitals. You need to deal with the landlord or the agency, negotiate on terms of the contract and make a calculated decision.
If you wish to live independently, but the idea of living alone scares you, then homestay is the best option for you. You can stay with a family in the host country who will provide you with a friendly environment and home-cooked meals. You will be given a room of your own, but you have to share other facilities like kitchen, laundry and bathroom with the family. Homestay comes handy in learning the local language and culture, as well as in finding useful contacts.
One downside is the long commutes to the lectures since families prefer to stay in a peaceful area away from the bustle of campus. Have an open discussion about the terms and rules of the house. Some may pose a restriction on timings and visitors. Remember to act as a member of the house. Volunteer in activities like dog sitting, gardening and tutoring the kids.
Checklist to choose an ideal student accommodation
Once you know the available options, there are factors that will help you land on a choice that suits you best. Know that the house you choose is not permanent and you can always move if you want to. You must set your priorities and ask the right questions to gain clarity.
1. What is your budget?
Money is a significant factor in deciding where and how you should live. Don’t go broke looking for a fancy house. Setting a well-thought budget helps you narrow down to the size, location and type of the accommodation to look for. To decide on your budget, educate yourself about the place, the economy, the general lifestyle, the standard and the cost of living.
Though an expat is charged extra in many aspects, make use of the places your student card will get you discounts. You should also set aside money for study materials, transportation and meals. Usually rent decreases as you go farther from city, but you will have to pay more for transportation.
2. What are the terms of the contract?
Before you sign the lease, read the contract thoroughly and learn about the main aspects. Be clear about tenure of the agreement, renewal formalities, payment methods and obligations, security deposit, maintenance and repair works, subletting rules, guests and timings, vehicle parking and waste disposal, allowance of pets, and tenant support.
Check whether the rent covers the cost of gas, electricity, water and internet. In the UK, you often need a guarantor—a person to cover for you if you don’t pay the rent on time. This can be someone you know, or you can find a trusted guarantor online.
3. What are reliable sources of information?
It’s very easy to get drowned in the gazillion websites giving you different directions, often misleading or exploiting you for monetary benefits. You must go for trusted accommodation providers like AmberStudent that offers hassle-free service, customized suggestions, back end support for paperwork and free registration.
AmberStudent has properties in major student cities all over the UK like Bristol, London, Manchester and Leeds, with spaces designed specifically for students, all within a pocket-friendly budget. Check student-run University websites, and social media handles for updates on available rooms. Do extensive background search, read different reviews and save yourself from fraudsters.
4. What are your non-negotiable criteria?
If it’s a course to study or a place to stay, some personal factors have an upper hand in the decision. Since this varies from person to person, reflect on your preferences in different aspects and trust your instincts. What kind of neighbourhood do you prefer? Do you want to live with other students? Do your potential housemates share similar traits as yours?
What kind of lifestyle do you lead? Are you looking for a fully furnished space or unfurnished space which you can reset on your own? Are you willing to give up on your privacy for the sake of shorter commutes? Find out your preferences and choose accordingly to find your happy spot in the foreign city.
How can Amberstudent help you?
We at AmberStudent are devoted to giving you the best experience and option for student accommodation worldwide because we apprehend its value. We have upgraded ourselves continuously with the COVID policies and would be more than eager to assist you in those.