Five Things to Remember When House Hunting


5 Things to Remember When House Hunting

The Christmas holidays are drawing to a close, and with withered trees inhabiting tips and skips across the country, universities are welcoming back refreshed students (theoretically), ready and excited for another term (theoretically). As well as being disappointed by essay marks and getting used to waking up in the mornings again, the first term of the new year is also the time when most students start looking seriously for houses.

There is often a lot to think about when looking for a place to call home, and sometimes it’s hard to know where to start. Here are 5 things to remember when house hunting:


Your University’s Student Accommodation Office

If you have a group of friends ready to start looking, but don’t know where to start – go to uni for help. Your university should have a student accommodation office (or similar) which will be able to offer a bit of guidance on how to get started, where to start looking, and what you should be looking for. All very useful, particularly for novices.


Keep an Eye on Money

Houses are an expensive business, and you’ll need to be aware of money when you’re looking for houses. First off, rents can vary dramatically depending on the area, and the size of the house – so don’t be shocked to hear of friends who have found vastly cheaper houses. They’ll probably be living in an industrial estate 72 miles from campus. Remember, you will also need to pay a deposit, which is usually a month’s rent or so in advance, and have a think about utilities too. A big house may be hard to keep warm, and old boilers are seriously inefficient. Check out our 5 essential utilities for more help on this!


Be Patient

You’ve seen 27 houses, one of which had no mattresses, and another that had 14 burnt out mattresses stacked up in the front garden. Don’t worry – eventually you’ll Goldilocks it and find one that’s just right… okay, hideous metaphor aside (and use of the word ‘Goldilocks’ as a verb), being patient is a necessary virtue in house hunting. There are plenty of student properties in most towns and cities in the UK, and you will see some terrible places before finding a suitable house. Be patient, and don’t go for the first one you see!


Make Sure Everyone is Happy

This point is particularly relevant if you’re moving in with a big group of people, although it’s also worth remembering with smaller groups too. While it can be hard, try to make sure that everybody is happy, and everybody has had a chance to voice his or her opinions about any prospective property. If one or two people take control and assume everybody else is content without asking, resentment can start to simmer under the surface, and suddenly 3 months later BANG! The passive aggressive notes start. WALLOP! Your housemate starts hiding their cutlery, and before you know it KAPOW! Full scale anarchy. Be warned…


Have Fun!

Finally, house hunting can be a tedious, stressful and irritating experience, but as a student you’re only going to be living in the house you pick for a matter of months. Try to put any excess stresses behind you, as long as you follow our sage advice, finding a student house can also be a lot of fun. Enjoy the time with your friends, and try and find that house that ticks all the boxes. Good luck, and enjoy! See you at your new place for a cuppa sometime.