Are you packing for university and leaving the comfort of your own home and kitchen for the first time...
How to Choose the Perfect Accommodation
By Student Cribs | July 26, 2017
The time has come, you have decided to attend university away from home and now you must choose your accommodation. But where do you begin? It can be a daunting process, finding the perfect balance between comfort and price can be challenging, especially if you’re a fresher. There are many factors to consider when looking for accommodation and this depends entirely on what you classify as important for you and your needs.
- Location, Location, Location
For some, the whereabouts of their accommodation is highly important. Whether this is because the closer it is to uni the more motivated you’ll be to get to your 9am lectures, or if you simply don’t want to have to rely on buses and taxis to get you to your destinations, this is a vital factor to consider. You don’t want to be living too far away from popular student locations as this could result in missing out on certain activities. Depending on where you’ll be attending uni, it might be important to consider if your accommodation is near local shops and nightlife. Usually, houses closer to the university will be more expensive, but this means not having to pay for taxis and bus fares, so it might be worth calculating costs to see which would be cost effective.
- To ensuite, or not to ensuite…
Having an ensuite can be incredibly convenient and ideal, who wouldn’t choose having their own bathroom over having to share? However, properties with ensuites tend to be more expensive, so you get what you pay for. Having an ensuite may not be necessary in some instances as some properties may have several bathrooms, which means that you may very well end up with your own bathroom or only have to share with another person. This decision comes entirely down to your budget and preference.
- Bills, Bills, Bills
During your searches, you’ll find that some accommodation prices include bills while others don’t. Some accommodation may be like Student Cribs, where bills are all taken care of for an additional of just £15 per person per week. While others require you to pay the bills separately, this could be quite expensive, and can lead to some headaches and unpleasant situations with housemates. In most cases, if bills aren’t included, it is always best to find somewhere that has a set payment for bills so you aren’t met with any nasty surprises.
- Check it out!
If you can, try to view a few properties before deciding on the best one for you. Some images you see online could be old or not the correct representation of the property you’ll be renting. If you can’t view the property, try Skyping with the landlord so they can show you around, if not just request some up to date pictures. Some landlords may try to take advantage of students, don’t fall into the trap!
This is important, especially if you’re opting to rent privately from a landlord. Your deposit should be in a deposit protection scheme, this is a government requirement, however some landlords may avoid this. There are three deposit protection schemes that can be used by landlords; Deposit Protection Service (DPS), Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS), and MyDeposits. Make sure whoever you’re renting from puts your deposit away in one of those, or insures it with them.
- Read before signing anything
Make sure you actually read the tenancy agreement before signing it. This isn’t like agreeing to Apple’s T&C’s to continue with an update on your phone without actually reading anything (does anyone actually read those?). A tenancy agreement is a legal document so when you sign it you are essentially confirming that you agree with everything written in there, don’t do that until you are 110% sure. Ask other people around you for help, like parents or a sibling who has done this before, they can look over it for you or help pick out things you should be looking out for.
This will be your home for the next year, so don’t be afraid to be picky, but don’t set your bar too high either. Try not to jump at the first property you see, do your research thoroughly as this way the chances of this turning out to be a complete disaster will be far more slim. Of course, mistakes happen, we are human, after all.
Hey you! We’ve done all the work for you here at Student Cribs and have found you the perfect accommodation! Don’t believe us? Check out our Cribs and see for yourself.