There’s lots to think about when it comes to choosing your home for the next 12 months, and because there’s a number of student specific properties available, it’s first come, first served for the most desirable properties. Here are some key areas you’ll need to consider before signing up to your student home:
Who you’ll be living with:
First things first: you’ll need to decide who you’ll be living with. Think carefully about who you’d be happy to share a kitchen with for the next twelve months! Once you’ve decided, you can look for properties with the relevant number of bedrooms.
- Figure out how much you’ll have left over from your yearly budget after your rent by multiplying the PPW (price per week) / PPM (price per month). Make sure you’re realistic- there’s no point in living in a top end accommodation if you can’t afford to have a life!
- In a house share, you usually have to pay the household bills on top of your rent (something that you might not have had to think about in halls!) This will probably include gas, water, electricity and WiFi (remember if you are a full time student, you are exempt from paying council tax, but do check you are eligible). Be sure to budget these into your weekly or monthly allowance.
- These bills can either be paid individually, from the lead tenants bank account, or by direct debit from bill-splitting companies. Whist being marginally more expensive, this direct debit method can alleviate the monthly stress of chasing your flat mates up to transfer you what they owe- and peace is invaluable!
- On a stretched budget, many students choose to forgo cars, which means that thinking about accessibility to university and local amenities is key. Figure out how long your walk or bus journey to campus will be, as well as local supermarkets, nightlife and anywhere else you need to get. If the location means you’ll need to get public transport, you’ll need to factor this in to your budget.
- Check that the property has good, well fitting locks on the front and back doors, and windows that work.
- Check how secure outside areas are- if you ride a bike, for example, is there anywhere safe to store this?
- When you’re looking around a property, make sure you keep an eye out for things like damp, and be sure to ask what fixtures, fittings and furniture are included in the tenancy agreement.
- Ask about energy efficiency: it’s likely you’ll spend lots of time in your property studying during the day, so it’s important you budget accordingly for heating in line with this.
Moving in/out and finance:
- When moving in, think ahead to when you will be moving out and importantly getting your deposit back for next year. If you receive an inventory, make sure you check it thoroughly and return it to your landlord or lettings agents with any comments and photos. You cannot be charged for any damage or missing items if your landlord or lettings agent doesn’t provide an inventory.
- If your tenancy is an Assured Shorthold Tenancy, it is a legal requirement that your security deposit is lodged in a tenancy deposit scheme (there are three different schemes) and you should receive specific scheme information, a copy of the registration certificate and a scheme leaflet – keep these!
- You will also need either a guarantor, who is in full employment in the UK or you will need to pay your rent in advance.
The following Your Move branches offer student accommodation, and the most desirable properties get snapped up quickly, so get in touch today to start looking in to your student home for 2018/19:
Hopefully you’ve found this guide helpful- good luck with university and enjoy the housewarming!
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