Applying to uni takes a lot of emotional effort and concentration while working and revising for your A levels in the final year of college. It can be difficult to look beyond results day and forward to the day you will actually leave home and start your first term. Going to university is a big and exciting step – this will be the first time most students live away from home and you may be wondering just how you will be living and what student accommodation is like.
The best way to find out more is to go to a university open day and see the student accommodation in your chosen universities for yourself. In the meantime, here is a brief introduction to what your university will probably be offering.
In most universities, living accommodation for students is standardised with blocks and rooms being recently constructed to provide everything you need. You will usually be offered rooms in halls of residence in your first year and some universities have student accommodation provided for second and third year students too, although most live out in private rented rooms and shared houses.
It is difficult to describe the ‘typical‘ student room when they vary within a university as well as between institutions but this is pretty close:
It’s not surprising that universities set up some ground rules for living in their student accommodation. These are to make living there safe and as pleasant as possible for everyone.
No university halls of residence will allow smoking in your room and most institutions do not allow it within the grounds either, or there may be a rule of no smoking within 10 metres of a building. To minimise fire risk, most halls of residence do not allow candles of any sort and ban you from having electrical equipment such as a kettle, toaster or cooking appliances in your room. These are restricted to the kitchen.
You will also get regular inspections to make sure your room and the communal areas are not getting too gross. Your flat may have a rota for cleaning and emptying bins etc. Not doing your chore properly will probably lead to a fine to pay contract cleaners to clean up the mess.
An important external rule to be aware of is the need to have a TV licence if you intend to have a TV that picks up live programmes. Although a shared house only needs one licence, every student in halls of residence needs their own. Most students make do with watching programs on their laptop, ipad, MAC or PC via BBC iplayer and 4OD or get a subscription to Netflix or LoveFilm as you don’t need a licence for any of that.