The second year is the time in student life where many people think that it is time to try renting a place and moving out of halls of residence.  It can be a big decision and have a positive or negative effect on your life so careful consideration is required.  Here are some do’s and don’ts to help you plan the move.

Do look early

There’s no official date that you should start house hunting but as soon as you have made the decision to do it, then start looking around.  Often, the earlier the better with house hunting – that way you get the best choice of properties.  Many students start looking at the end of their first term to give themselves plenty of time.

Using student accommodation specialists can also be a big advantage because you know that you are getting great quality accommodation that will come with legally safe tenancy agreements and top standards.  There are also accommodation specialists who offer higher quality properties that are perfect when you are sharing with others.

Do look at the area around the house

It is common to pick accommodation based on where it is in relation to the university campus or the price but make sure you look a little further than this.  For example, look at the facilities around where you are living – is there a supermarket nearby?  Are there any convenience shops nearby for those sudden emergencies?

Also look at the transport links in the area.  Consider how easy it is to get from the property to the campus – are you battling rush hour traffic?  Is there a single bus or train journey or do you need to change?  Nearer campus might mean an easier commute but might also be more expensive while further away might reduce costs but mean you need to get up earlier on a morning.

Don’t just consider your friends as housemates

Properties are available from single occupation styles up to around eight people sharing so this means there are lots of options around who you can live with.  Often, students choose their friends to live with and this can work well but make sure they are the kind of friend you can spend a lot of time with – because that’s what happens when you live together.

One idea is to live with people who have a similar approach to their studies as you do.  So, if you like to balance your studies with your social life, then look for others the same.  Or if you prefer to study and leave partying to the weekend, share with others who have the same approach to avoid conflicts.

Don’t be afraid to shop around

Don’t think that just because you have viewed a house, you then have to rent it.  Student accommodation experts will understand if you don’t go for the property after viewing it so don’t feel obliged.  While you might find the perfect place first time out, let yourself check a few properties just to be sure.  That way, you have a better chance of being happy in the property for the following year.

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Published:  June 1, 2017