Have you been living in the dormitories as a student? Maybe you just want to move out and find a place of your own?
If so, we’d like to congratulate you…
The decision to move out and stay on your own is a BIG decision and is an excellent way to embrace your adulthood whilst you are still studying.
There are many landlords that are willing to offer their homes to single or multiple students (fewer than 5). Some of these landlords may also offer a discount on the rent and special perks for students depending on the location where you’re renting.
In this article, we’re going to cover some of the most important things you need to keep in mind when searching for student accommodation and help you get the best home possible…
Tip 1: The Right Location
When it comes to rental properties, location means everything. You want to choose a location that’s a safe haven for you and your friends and also close to your University.
Make sure that the location is also closer to nightclubs and shops to accommodate your lifestyle. But remember the more posh a location is, the higher the rent you’re going to have to pay.
So think carefully and do your research.
Research multiple locations on all four directions from your university.
If you’re going to work part-time somewhere, it is important that you find your home at a location that is in-between your office and university. This will save you tons of time and energy because in most cases, you’d want to come home after your classes before you go to work.
Determine how much you can afford and look at locations that fall within your budget. If your parents are willing to pay the rent, ask them how much they can afford to pay you.
The best way to have a look at wide range of student accommodation homes is by contacting a real estate agency. You see… not all homes in the market are offered to students.
Some landlords just don’t want to give their properties to students. Finding a student accommodation home can be hard on your own.
It is better to contact a real estate agent or agency and have them do the hard work of finding the property for you. In most cases, you are not the one who needs to pay them the finder fees. The landlord is the one who’ll be required to pay them.
Tip 2: Find A Friend
The best way to ensure that you get the best possible student accommodation and have the most fun is by renting a property with one or more of your friends.
What this allows you to do is to split the costs of rent.
Regardless of whether you’re the only one or you’re sharing your home with someone else in a two-bedroom setting, the rent you’re going to pay is the same. By sharing the home with someone, you will have the same level of privacy at a lower cost.
It will save you tons of hassle and time because the two of you do not need to get yourself a separate vehicle. If your friend has one, you can use it with him for your trips to the University and hang out.
You can make up for it by investing in something else (for example – a home theater or new furniture). All of you can share responsibilities and manage the house effectively.
But it is very important that you have a conversation with all of your friend(s) early on even before you sign the agreement about sharing of costs, who will take which room, etc to ensure that there are no arguments or fallouts later on.
And if one of your friend(s) is going through a financially tiring time, one of you can pay for them when they are unable to.
Tip 3: Outside Costs
The rent is not the only thing that’s going to matter. You’ll also encounter other costs such as electricity, gas, TV, water, food, college fees, etc.
Make sure that you calculate all the external costs that you’re going to encounter and present it to your friends before each of you sign an agreement.
The rent is not the only thing that you’re going to have to pay whilst at college. There are also many other expenses that you’ll encounter.
You may need to buy clothes, electronic equipment, furniture, etc.
Make sure that you calculate these costs and show it to your parents before you proceed. If you’re going to be handling the expenses yourself, make sure that your income (at a part-time job) is greater than the expenses that you’re going to encounter.
Tip 4: Get A Guarantor
The reason why most landlords refuse to offer student accommodation is because students lack a guarantor. The landlords have no person to claim money from if the student fails to pay the rent.
A guarantor maybe essential on the contract depending on the landlord you’re working with.
A guarantor is basically someone who’s working full-time that’s capable of affording your rent and is willing to take legal responsibility to pay the rent if you fail to make the payment. If more than one of you is renting the home, you may add multiple guarantors to the contract.
Make sure that you talk to all of your friends that are considering renting the home along with their parents/guarantors to ensure everything is crystal clear. Once you choose your guarantor, sign an agreement.
In a lot of cases, a landlord may actually be willing to knock a couple of dollars on your monthly rent if you’re having a guarantor sign the agreement.
Tip 5: Read The Agreement Carefully
Most landlords are reluctant to letting students rent properties because there are chances of furniture damage, drug use, etc.
These maybe stated in the agreement. So make sure that you read the agreement thoroughly and stick to your word.
If you’re found breaking the rules stated in the agreement, you may be asked to vacate the home. So make sure that you read the agreement carefully and only sign the document if you are willing to adhere to the rules.
There are clauses about the minimum notice period that you/the landlord has to give in the event of vacation. Make sure that you read through it carefully and sign it if you’re willing.
Look for at least a 1 – 2 month notice period because you’ll need that much time to find a new place and move. Do not sign the agreement if it says that the landlord offers you less than one month to vacate after the notice has been given.