Popular student areas will normally have a range of properties to choose from. There may be flats for as few as two sharers or houses with room for up to 10. Decide how many people you’re going to share with and you’ll be ready to start your search. Remember though, you’ll need to split all the housework and the bills with whoever you choose to share with, so try to choose people you’ll get on with for the next 12 months!
Landlords will want to reference you to ensure you pay the rent on time and look after the property. Because in most cases students don’t have any renting history or full time employment, the landlord will seek a guarantor for each tenant. A guarantor (usually a parent or guardian) will agree to take joint responsibility for the rent for the property if you fail to. Guarantors are required to pay any rent arrears (if the tenant does not pay) and for any damages costing more than the deposit. Make sure you know who yours will be before you commit to renting somewhere.
Always check that there is a gas safety record for any properties you are thinking of tenting; your potential lettings agent or landlord should have this.
Carbon monoxide detectors are not legally required but are recommended.
Smoke alarms and electrical certificates are not legally required (unless the house is a House in Multiple Occupation*) but are recommended. If the house is a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO), there should also be fire doors and fire blankets and you should check with your lettings agent that the landlord has a licence to run an HMO.
Check that any properties you like have good, well-fitting locks on the front and back doors and windows that work. Don’t forget that you will need to get your belongings insured.
Our property search checklist is a handy tool to help plan your search.
(*) HMO = at least 3 tenants live there, forming more than one household and you share toilet, bathroom or kitchen facilities with other tenants
(**) Calls may be recorded and/or monitored for training and/or data protection purposes