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Accommodation Advice

Whether you choose to live in on-campus or off-campus accommodation recommended by the University of Suffolk, or choose to source your own accommodation in the private rental market, you may find the information below very useful when renting accommodation.

Accommodation Housing Guide

The Infozone has created an Accommodation Housing Guide for students living in any type of rented accommodation; this may be particularly useful if you are renting for the first time.  This guide provides an overview of tenancy agreements and deposits, providing you with useful “need to know” information.

Financing your Accommodation

Accommodation is likely to be the biggest expense you have whilst at university so it is important to get it right.  It will be your second most important expense, after food.

It is normal to expect to pay a deposit and advanced rent prior to moving into your accommodation.  Four weeks rent for a deposit and 4-6 weeks rent for advanced rent is normal, but landlords can charge more; the exact amount payable in advance will depend on the room and property you choose to book.

Many students will need to pay their deposit and advanced before their first instalment of student finance is due to them.  We strongly recommend that students plan for this and save for their deposit/advanced rent over the months leading up to the start of their tenancy agreement.

Students moving away from the parental home may be entitled to a more substantial maintenance loan from Student Finance England; see their website and online calculator for more information.  Getting an idea of how much funding you are entitled to may be useful in helping you decide what accommodation you can afford.

Top Tips

  • Research your options; don’t just settle for the first accommodation you find.  You will be living there so make sure you are happy with your choice before you book.
  • Always view the accommodation where possible.  No one knows what you are looking for better than you and viewing the accommodation yourself can make all the difference.
  • What can you afford?  Make sure you budget enough for food, transport, text books and materials and entertainment. 
  • Save for your deposit and advanced rent payments so you do not have to wait on your student finance coming through before you can move in.  Your landlord will tell you the amount due and when you must pay it by.
  • Check the tenancy dates.  You won’t be able to change the dates once you’ve signed the tenancy agreement.  You can find your timetable on the course pages on this website.
  • Read through the tenancy agreement in full before you sign it.  A tenancy agreement is a legally binding document.  Make sure you understand and agree to be bound by all of the terms and conditions and get assistance if you do not understand any of it.
  • Check your chosen accommodation has all of the facilities you require: ensuite, washing machine/laundrette, security, parking, near shops, near the University, near public transport.
  • Is there a cancellation clause or cooling off period?  Under what circumstances would you be released from the tenancy agreement or be entitled to a refund of your deposit if you have a change of circumstances?

Private Rental Market

The University of Suffolk will only recommend accommodation that has been inspected by Ipswich Borough Council and meets our standards of quality and safety.  Read more about the University of Suffolk Accreditation Scheme here. 

There are other companies that will advertise student accommodation that does not have University of Suffolk Accreditation.  Make sure you investigate these properties thoroughly; the University of Suffolk cannot comment on the standard or suitability of non-accredited accommodation.  For independent advice on what to look out for and the right questions to ask click here.

If University of Suffolk Recommended and Accredited Accommodation is not for you and you choose to arrange your own accommodation elsewhere, you will find a variety of property search engines and lettings agents that advertise accommodation that may be suited to your needs.  Local publications may also have regular or periodic housing sections and supplements detailing local agents and vacancies.

Independent advice can also be obtained from the following resources:

 

Other Accommodation pages: