1. Check if your university has a deadline for applying for accommodation
Some universities say that if you apply by this date you’ll be guaranteed a place to live in student halls of residence.
It’s usually a different date for each university, so check on their website. Though even if the deadline has passed, don’t worry – they may have some places remaining in their student accommodation, or they could help you find university-approved house shares managed by private landlords.
2. Search what accommodation is still available
You can use the UCAS accommodation search to get an initial idea of what’s available – or you can go to your university’s website and check their accommodation information.
It’s worth comparing the accommodation that’s available so you can choose the one that suits you best.
For instance, in student halls, you could be sharing an apartment or townhouse with other students – with a shared kitchen and living room, and either en-suite shower rooms or a shared bathroom.
Whereas in house shares managed by private landlords, you’d have a bedroom in a more traditional shared house, with shared living spaces and bathroom, possibly with a garden – and probably in a more residential area.
3. Think about what’s important to you?
There’s no such thing as one size fits all – think about…
Have a look around – either in person at an open day, or you can take a look at virtual tours of many kinds of university accommodation to help you see what you’d prefer.
4. Apply as soon as you can
If a lot of the accommodation at your uni is still available, it’s worth applying for it as soon as you can – as it’s usually first come first served.
If it’s before their accommodation deadline, some unis ask you to choose more than one option (in your order of preference) so they can help as many students get one of their preferred options as they can.
5. Talk it through!
Not sure what to choose? Talk it over with family and friends to see if they can help you decide.
Or you’re welcome to have a chat with students already at uni to see what was important to them when they chose their accommodation. You could ask them if they’re happy with the choice they made, or if there’s other accommodation they’d have preferred to live in. See what tips they have!
Although if you’re still not sure, maybe you’ll be ok with any kind of student accommodation. They’re all maintained to a good standard of living, whether university-managed or university-approved private landlords. So you’ll have a good place to live wherever you end up.
Take a look at what you need to know before you sign an accommodation contract, and our advice on finding the right accommodation for you.
Or start your student accommodation search here.