I hope you are all well and having a good week. I am going to apologise to you now for the rambling up ahead, but this is something I always get really into.
It’s that time of year when people are thinking about whether to stay in student accommodation or move into a house. I know it sounds scary – to have only been at university for three months and have to start thinking about living situations for next year is daunting, but it’s something that needs to be thought about.
I suggest doing this sooner rather than later. Some of my friends left it until after Christmas, and by that time all the ‘good’ houses were gone and they either chose a bad house, or remained in halls. Don’t get me wrong, living in halls during my first year was an amazing experience and I would recommend all first years do so as it is a great way to meet people. I also loved how close to everything student accommodation was, but I knew I didn’t want to do it again for second and third year.
Before deciding whether to stay in halls or move into a house, I’d say think about what you want and even chat to your friends to see what they may want to do. But also remember to think about yourself and do what’s best for you – you only do university like this once and you should make it count!
I was very lucky in that me and three of my flatmates got on like sisters and knew we all wanted to live with each other. Once we had decided this, we then looked at what we all wanted:
- four Bedrooms of a similar size
- double beds
- bills included
- living room – with sofas to watch those all-important TV programmes (I’m a celebrity!
- Wi-Fi included
- walking distance from shops and university
Now I will say when looking for a house to remember that you are students. This means you shouldn’t expect to find a modern mansion with flat screen TV and acres of land in the middle of the city. I would also say to keep your budget in mind – I suggest looking at prices similar or lower, if possible, to that you paid in student accommodation.
There are lots of websites you can use to help find a home to make your own, but there are also many second and third years you can ask and whom I’m sure will be willing to help, as I am. My friends and I used a company called Campbell Property.
After getting in touch, we managed to book some viewings where we looked around the properties and asked a million questions – none are too silly and they are normally happy to answer. After looking at around five houses, we found our home.
When going through this stage of university there will be hiccups. Whether this be between your flatmates and friends, or what you are looking for, or maybe initially you’ll struggle to find anything at all. But here a few quick tips to remember:
- make sure you know who you are living with and what they are like to live with.
- ask as many questions as you want.
- take notes of anything said.
- save EVERY document just in case.
- look now while you can as there are other huge universities in Birmingham doing the same thing.
I hope you found this post helpful and not too daunting. If you have any questions, please leave a comment and I will try and help as best I can.