Finding the right place to live can make all the difference to your university experience. But what should you look for in a property? Where and when should you start looking? And how can you find the best private student homes in Lancaster? Here are a few useful tips.
When to start looking
Lancaster has a large student population, over 16,000, so inevitably demand for Lancaster student accommodation significantly exceeds what is available. This means that it’s never too early to start looking for your next student homes to rent. Most Lancaster University students start looking for somewhere to live in the October of the previous year, and most of the decent Lancaster student housing is gone by Christmas or early January.
Where to look
You can find student housing in Lancaster in several ways. You can contact landlords directly, you can use an estate agent, or you can choose a professional letting agent. Lancaster Student Lettings have been serving the city for over thirty years and specialise in accommodation for students in Lancaster. Unlike an estate agent, who will often be focussed on more profitable property sales, letting is all we do and we do it well. We form the perfect bridge between students and landlords, making sure everyone gets the service they deserve.
What to look for
The right student house to rent will depend on your personal priorities, and those of the people you want to share your house with. If you like a little nightlife, then being close to the city centre will be important to you (and save on expensive taxis to get home). However, if you prefer the quiet life, then somewhere on the outskirts of town may be better.
Lancaster has an excellent public transport system, with lots of busses, so wherever you choose, you’ll find it easy to get to your lectures.
How to find housemates
There are lots of different ways of finding people to share your student house rent. You can ask friends, course-mates or people from your uni halls. If you are struggling to make up numbers, you can always advertise online or on uni noticeboards. Of course, you don’t have to have a houseful to rent the whole of a shared student house, you can just rent by the room. Just like on your course or in your old halls, you could end up meeting new people who will become friends for life.
How to assess student houses
There are a number of things to look out for when assessing student homes in Lancaster. You need to check what bills are included in the rent, what back-up there is if anything goes wrong and exactly what is included in the way of furniture and appliances. Lancaster Student Lettings all include bills, and many properties also include fast broadband too. All our student homes are fully furnished with high quality appliances and most bedrooms are en suite and equipped with a double bed and student desk.
Be prepared to compromise
If you are looking to rent student rooms in Lancaster with friends, then it is unlikely that you will all want the same things, so some element of compromise will be needed. That said, remember that you will be living there for the next year, so don’t agree to anything you are not happy with. It is better to find a different property, or rent with different people, than to make yourself miserable just to please someone else.
Viewing student flats in Lancaster
While most agents, including Lancaster Student Lettings, will include a range of photographs, and even 360° virtual tours, it is still worthwhile going to see the property for yourself. Take as many of your potential housemates as you can, so you can get a range of points of view. For a first-hand, unbiased opinion, talk to the current tenants and ask them what they like and dislike about living there. They may tell you things the agent has casually glossed over, or they may genuinely love it. Either way, their independent opinion is invaluable. It is also worthwhile coming back to the area at night and at weekends to see what it is like at other times.
Be sure before you sign
Renting accommodation for students involves a legally binding contract, so make sure you know exactly what you are getting into before you sign. If there is anything you don’t understand in the contract, get it checked by a professional or talk to the student union for advice. At Lancaster Student Lettings, we pride ourselves on having open, transparent contracts so everyone knows exactly where they stand.
Book your moving date
Once you’ve found the perfect place and the ideal flatmates, and checked and signed your contract, all that is left is to do is move in. At Lancaster Student Lettings, we offer a range of flexible moving dates to suit you. And don’t worry, we understand how your money works, so we won’t ask for your rent until your student finance lands.