Home is where the heart is. That’s what the well-known proverb tells us, but what happens if you are trying to find somewhere to live for university? There’s a world of possibilities out there with student accommodation and lots of variety. Trying to compare rooftop terraces to fitness centres and learning zones can be tricky, and a basic pros and cons list may not cut it. So, here are top five tips to consider when selecting your perfect home away from home whilst studying at university – no matter where in the world you are.
Wellbeing – Fitness and health
Fitness is important from a health and wellbeing perspective. Whilst at university you may feel under pressure from deadlines, and research shows that endorphins can help alleviate some of this. Checking out local green spaces – such as parks – near your student accommodation is good place to start, as you can’t beat a bit of fresh air. However, many places will now include a gym or access to a local sports complex – making it convenient to fit a workout around your studying. Also a great saver as if you were to have a gym membership, you could be spending minimum of £180 a year on top of your accommodation.
Design – Space and light
Do you like light open spaces? Or do you prefer cosy corners to study in? Considering how best you work, sleep and enjoy space is important. When looking around student accommodation buildings think about how you might use the space and if it could work for you. It may sound really picky but actually agreeing to live somewhere which has lots of small, closed spaces when you know you prefer open plan can have a big impact on how much you enjoy it. If you are seeing several places then make sure to take pictures and notes so you can do a comparison after visiting them all. This will help put you back in the moment when making your decision later down the line.
Location – Area and time
The world is your oyster, quite literally whilst studying at university as now more students than ever before studying in another country. So where to begin when thinking about location? Considering factors such as if you like quiet then picking a quieter neighbourhood, or equally if you like to be in the action then pick a central location. Work out how long your commute will be can help decide which areas you are happy to move to, as if you aren’t a morning person it is probably best to avoid an hour commute.
Finance – Bills and inclusions
Handling finances is up there with general life admin on the things everyone would rather deal without. Paperwork, forms and dates seem endless but unfortunately is part and parcel of what we have to deal with. Getting organised by understanding the exact costs, and putting together a budget planner can help – check out helpful apps who organise this for you, making life admin dreamy rather than a disaster. However, also ask potential student accommodation providers what is included in the contract and whether that’s unlimited. This could save you either paying twice for something – as often internet, heating and water are included in student accommodation – or equally getting a financial surprise at the end of the first month living there.
Community – Sharing is caring
University can be great as you can make friendships that last a lifetime, but they don’t happen overnight and the first few semesters can be daunting as you look to create new friendships. Finding people who are like minded and into the same activities as you is a great place to start. Most universities will have groups you can join, sometimes you can even use this as a chance to learn a new skill. Also, it’s worth checking out if your accommodation has any groups or activities planned where you can meet new people, or alternatively local cafes that may put on events.
It’s worth spending time to ensure you pick what is right for you, don’t feel pressured into making a decision if you aren’t 100% certain, as there’s plenty of choice to pick from to find your perfect home away from home. We have a brilliant booking team who are on hand to help find your ideal student accommodation – you can give us a call, use our live chat or submit an enquiry form on our Contact Us page.