Things you should know before renting a shared house

16:04 Sasha Alexander 0 Comments

Hey I'm Sasha, a 2nd year Publishing & Japanese Lang student who recently had to deal with a lot of housing issues. I thought I would write some advice for students looking to rent shared housing.

Most new students will apply for halls in their first year at Brookes although this isnt always the case. In December around the end of your 1st semester you will probably be thinking about housing for 2nd year or at least people around you will be. When deciding where to live during your studies there are a few key things that you should consider. 

-What are your location priorities?
Do you prefer to be close to the university so you can roll out of bed into class? Or maybe being in the center of town close to shops and nightlife is higher on your list? Either way try to make daily life easier for yourself by checking local bus routes and whether the area is predominantly students or families.

-Who do you want to live with?
Probably the most crucial question you need to consider. Perhaps you got lucky and are living with a great group of people in halls that you want to continue living with next year. Most students that I know choose to live with friends they have met on their course. Consider carefully whether the people you enjoy hanging out with are going to also be the type of people you will enjoy living with and can rely on to help sort out any issues that arrise.

-Keep in mind:
Renting a house is very different from living in halls and comes with its own stresses such as paying bills that in halls would have been included within the rent. I would advise students to book viewings as early as possible and make sure to carefully inspect the contract terms to make sure you are getting a fair deal. Student central can also provide advice on housing contracts.

-In my 2nd year:
I chose to live with 4 friends from my course, unfortunately, one of my housemates decided to move out quite suddenly after only 1 semester meaning we had to look for a new person to move in at a very late stage. Im sure you can imagine how stressful this was and we ended up living with an exchange student that none of us knew. If you aren't seeing eye to eye with one of your housemates try calmly talking it out before anything else. Moving out should be the last measure you take. 

-Housing list:
Oxford Brookes releases a housing list in February that includes a selection of available properties. However, the properties on this list usally have offers made on them by the end of the day so if you see one you like you and all your housemates must to be ready to put down a deposit that day! Also you can find fellow students looking for roomates/housing on facebook by searching terms like 'Oxford housing groups'.

That's all the advice I have for continuing students good luck with the housing search!