Where you live at university plays such an important role in the overall student experience - it’s not something you’ll want to leave to a spur-of-the-moment decision. Knowing when to start looking for student accommodation can often be difficult, especially when there are so many things to consider beforehand. But, with thousands of rival students clamouring for some dream digs of their own, it’s always best to get ahead of the competition.
Start putting plans in place early, and give yourself plenty of time to explore what’s out there. By researching when your favourite accommodation becomes available, you can prioritise other things - such as how you’ll decorate. To help you along, check out our advice on the best times to start hunting down student tenancies, below…
Should I have started looking already?
Chances are, if you’re reading this, you’re curious as to whether you should have already started looking for next year’s student accommodation. While that answer depends on various factors - such as what year you’re in and whereabouts in the UK you’re headed, the short answer is, yes. Even if you’re not looking to move for several months, it’s still useful to gain a solid idea of what student lease agreements will be available to you - and what prices you can expect to pay for them, now.
When should First Years start looking for Student Accommodation?
Depending on the number of rooms your university has available, most first year students spend their introductory academic year in student halls. These tend to be great places for meeting new people, scouting out potential housemates and getting involved in student life.
Generally speaking, the process of getting a room in halls is straightforward - as universities remain in close contact to issue student lease agreement deadlines. Hitting this time-frame is usually enough to bag yourself a space; however - by doing so early, you’ll give yourself a much wider pool of options and choices to choose from.
Conditional vs. Unconditional Offers
For those of you who have secured an unconditional offer, congratulations! So long as it’s for your first-choice university, you can sign a student lease agreement with confidence. Of course, we’d still advise that you do this as soon as possible. Putting it off until results day - when other young people are looking, runs the risk of you missing out on the cheapest rates and best choice of rooms available.
Waiting on your grades without a confirmed place? Fear not… sure everything’s a little uncertain now, but you can still research what kind of student tenancies are available for your chosen university. Some halls offer a ‘no place, no fee’ policy, in which your deposit gets returned should you not get the results you’re expecting. Not all providers are this flexible, but it’s worth looking into if you’re set on going to a certain city. In fact, some places are so popular, they get booked out well before results day - so it always pays to get ahead.
When should Second and Third Years start looking?
Well before the second academic year, most young people find they’ve had their fill of the mixed living arrangements provided by halls. Instead, they find themselves looking forward to sharing student tenancies with a group of their friends.
More than a quarter of first-years begin house-hunting within the first few weeks of their course. As a result, students come under enormous pressure to begin their search for a house as early as November. Then - as the months go by, this feeling only intensifies…
So, when exactly is the best time to start the search for your dream student home? A lot can happen in six months, but - if you’re dead certain on who you’re wanting to live with, there’s no better time than the present. Having a look during winter months is more than just acceptable - it’ll actually give you the time you’ll need to conduct a thorough search.
If you’re still debating who to live with - or simply want to concentrate on your coursework before looking for new digs, waiting until later terms in the academic years 2022/23 won’t necessarily leave you with slim pickings. Though many student accommodation providers advertise properties early, you’ll still find private rentals during summer months. However, in these cases, you may have to be increasingly patient or go on more viewings to find that perfect spot.
Trust in PC Properties
Wherever you’re staying in Sheffield, you’ll want a landlord you can depend on for your student experience. With over 20 years in the business - and more than 50 Sheffield student houses and properties across the most sought-after areas, you can rely on us to make your stay in the city an enjoyable one.
We’ve just started advertising for 2023/24 tenancies, so what are you waiting for? With benefits including flexible rent terms, free Wi-Fi and an award-winning maintenance team,
head to our website today - and discover the Sheffield student property of your dreams!