Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Moving in with strangers isn’t as scary as it sounds!

Once you’ve replied to your offers the next step is getting ready to start your studies. One of the key things you’ll need to do if you’re moving away from home is sort your accommodation. 
Living away from home with other students can be great experience and a way to make lifelong friends. 
There are no hard and fast ways for getting the move right – but it can help to hear from students who have been through themselves. Here, third year student, Lisa, from the University of Gloucestershire shares her tips…
University of Gloucestershire student, Lisa.
'I’m on my placement year whilst studying a Business Management degree at the University of Gloucestershire in Cheltenham. I’m from London so it was a big deal to move two hours from home to a new town in my first year. I’m very settled now though.

'Everyone is in the same boat when you arrive for your first day at university. You get thrown into halls with a load of strangers which can be scary. But, just remember that everyone feels just as scared! After Freshers’ week, course inductions and a few nights out, you’ll quickly become great friends, knowing you’ve got a whole year together.

'In my second year, I moved into a student house with my best friends which was brilliant. Things weren’t always perfect but that’s just part of the experience. Want to see my student house first-hand? Earlier this year I invited the guys from Living at Uni to take a tour

'Here are my top tips for moving into student accommodation: 

Pick your flatmates wisely
'Let’s be honest, wherever you end up living, who you live with is just as important. In halls, you generally don’t pick who you are with, and it’s a big adventure. But when you head into your second year, you get a choice. Don’t forget your workload will increase, so you need more time to study. Although partying all the time is fun, it won’t get you your degree. Choose your housemates based on this, those you have a great time partying with may not always be the best ones to live with.

Visit the property first
'It sounds obvious but when houses become available to rent, there can be a mad rush and students commit to places before viewing them. Even if you trust the people you’re moving in with, you should always view the house for yourself to make sure you will be happy living there. And, ideally meet the landlord too so you can check they will sort out any problems quickly.

Read the small print 
'When you find the perfect house for you and your friends, you’ll have to sign a contract. Make sure you know if bills are included in your rent and if not, how much they are and that everyone is happy to split them equally. Your university may offer some admin support with tenancy contracts so get their opinion on your contract to make sure everything is fair. Be sure you understand what you’re getting into (literally) before you’re tied into a contract you don’t want to be in!

Set ground rules 
'You’ll have your own room, but there will be communal areas too – a living room, bathrooms and the kitchen. Make sure everyone is clear about the ground rules. Some houses made cleaning and cooking rotas to make sure everyone pulls their weight which makes life much easier!'
Get friendly tips and advice all year round from our team of first year student bloggers.

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