Stressing about house hunting? Have no idea where to start?
When it comes to house hunting at university it can seem so stressful and you feel there is hardly any time to do viewings and make decisions, but don’t worry, all you need is some organisation. So, with these top tips I’m hoping to help you find the best property for you.
When you start looking at houses there will be a few things you will need to establish before going any further, to make house hunting a little less stressful I suggest you:
Set a budget before you start booking appointments with any estate agents or looking at any potential houses. By doing this you will be able to filter the search list based on the price range you and your future housemates will be able to afford.
When it comes to choosing estate agents do a bit of research before you contact them. Read a few reviews to ensure they are a reliable company to use. This is also a great chance to find out how much they will charge you for admin fees and holding deposits as some estate agents can be expensive, especially with student properties.
Think about what you need and what you want – needs are a must and wants are a bonus. Have both of these in mind when you go to tour house viewings. You’ll need to have the essentials like a fridge, oven, shower and basic household utilities but do you really need a bath or is that more of a want? Discuss this with your future housemates to establish what is essential for you.
Ideally, don’t keep changing the group of people you live with. Establishing who you want to live with early and remaining with those individuals will make house viewings and decision making so much easier.
Once you have established all these different factors and ensured you are all in agreement it is time to start looking at properties:
Don’t leave it too late and expect a lot of houses to be left on the market. Most first year students will also be looking around November and December so some houses do get snapped up quite quickly. But don’t panic if you don’t get the house you want straight away, be patient as the estate agents will list more properties towards the end of December and January. Additionally, houses with 5-6 bedrooms will go quite quickly as they are the most popular options when it comes to student housing.
Make sure when you book to view potential houses that everyone is available to go, so that everyone gets a chance to see the house before making any big decisions. It can become quite difficult when one or two people haven’t seen the property and you have to put a holding fee down. So, to avoid any unnecessary stress make sure you check everyone’s schedule before you go and book any viewings.
As you’re most likely not originally from Newcastle, get a better idea of what’s on offer in a few different areas. The City Centre or Jesmond properties are closer to campus and nightlife – but ones in Heaton or Gosforth may be cheaper. High West Jesmond and Ilford Road are a little out of the large student areas but are cheaper and you still have access to the Metro, so are worth considering too. Students also benefit from a discount Metro pass, you can get 30% off and a four week pass costs just £25.20 for unlimited travel.
Don’t be pressured into closing the deal at the viewing – estate agents will usually try and close the sale by telling you the best ones will go soon and that other students are looking at the property too. But if you don’t feel 100% then go away and take your time – sometimes they will get snapped up, but in most cases you can afford to wait until at least the next day. It’s a big decision worth thinking about and you don’t want to make any rash decisions without everyone being in agreement.
If you’re really struggling to find a student property, don’t panic. The university is always willing to help and can assist you with any problems you are facing, check the website’s accommodation pages for more information.