On Tuesday 24th January, GK Unions held a Student Housing Fair on campus and we had a great time talking to many students, local community members and seeing old faces.

Our aim of the day was to spread awareness to students that private renting is a cost effective alternative to living at halls of residence. As well as educating students on the pitfalls you may find when coming up against non-accredited landlords and agents. And of course, to showcase the beautiful student houses we have to offer!

We are full of student housing wisdom and would love to impart that in ways of tips and advice to help you through your university journey. So we’ve got 3 tips for finding the right houses for next year...

1. Location, Location, Location!

We all know how important location is when choosing somewhere to live (closer to the campus is KEY!). The main reason is SLEEP! Everyone needs more sleep - especially us students who go mental on weekdays and need to get up for a horrific 9am lecture the next morning! The shorter your walk to uni, the better!

 Another reason is TIME saved. We all know students who have these huge houses, however it takes them 2 buses, 1 train, 35 minute walk and a small jog to reach it into campus...and of course, they’re ALWAYS late.

Also make sure you keep an eye out for nearby supermarkets, doctor surgeries… fast food places, pubs clubs – you know, the REALLY important stuff! You may be sold on the idea of being close by to friends, however this will be fun for the first few weeks until the novelty wears off.

In fact, it's not the best idea should you be easily swayed by peer pressure but want to get on and study. Chances are you'll be distracted most times and kept up most nights of the week - NOT GOOD when you have deadlines. Also properties of this social nature tend to be a bit worse for wear at the end of the tenancy (mostly due to all the house parties/gathering!).

2. Inventory

Have a clear idea of what’s included in the inventory and what’s not. A nice leather sofa and flashy TV might be this house’s unique selling point, but they might’ve magically disappeared by the time it comes to you moving in!

Landlords and agents who rent to students are required to provide each tenant with a suitable desk and chair - provided that they have advertised the property as a student dwelling. Also, for your own personal comfort try to check bed mattresses for broken springs, which can become uncomfortable and hazardous over time.

3. Act Quickly

It's very important you find reliable and trustworthy friends who are committed to finding a good house and who wont let you down. You can lose good properties and serious amounts of cash if you one person lets the team down and pulls out.

Once you've found your Dream Team, it's time to find your student houses and shortlist the section down to a final 4! SPEED is the key on this point! Chances are, if you love a property, then there’s a high possibility that another 2/3 groups are around the corner....and someone else will feel the same about it.

The longer you leave it, the more likely it is that you’ll miss your house and will have to settle for your 2nd or 3rd choice. Leave it ridiculously long, then it's back to the drawing board and you'll need a new list.

Once everyone is happy, then the best thing for you to do is contact the agent (or landlord) express your interest and to secure the house.

Hopefully these 3 tips have help you even more to finding the uni house of you dreams and we'd love to hear from you on your experience. Get in touch below.

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