Are you considering moving? Or searching for the perfect housemates? Do you want to see where everyone is advertising their spare rooms? Or maybe you need someone to take over your contract? Whatever your housing headache, our Housing Advisor has put together some guidance to help you out.
We appreciate that there are all kinds of housing headaches at the moment so our advisors at the Advice Centre have put together a handy guide to private renting and accomodation.
Many students spend their first year at University in halls, but as you progress to second year, you will have to move on to private accommodation, unless you’ve been told you qualify to continue staying in Halls.
If you have not been assigned a guaranteed place in halls for your second year, you may feel disappointed or worried, but remember that there is advice available. You might be surprised to find that living in private housing can be a great option! It can be cheaper, you have more choice, there are rooms available throughout the academic year and you usually have more space
Our Looking Guide is a great place to start. It has useful information on where to search, how to search and what to expect when hunting for student accommodation.
If one of your housemates has dropped out of the tenancy, you should ask for an advice appointment, as this will impact on all housemates. There are several issues to consider, including urgent ones like council tax. We can make sure you’re aware of your legal rights and responsibilities, as well as helping you map out your next actions to minimise future problems. We can also give you tips for advertising the room and make sure the tenancy swap is done without endangering your security deposits. We strongly advise against doing this before getting advice and discussing it with all housemates.
Check out our RHSU Housemating Facebook group, where people are always looking for housemates.
Join the group
Tips for posting:
Our Advice Centre offers a free contract checking service and we recommend you don’t sign/pay for anything before using it. Simply email us with the subject ‘contract check request,’ attaching the tenancy agreement. All good landlords and agents should give you a couple of days to look over the contract.
We still recommend you send us your contract for checking. We can then send you feedback in plain English and offer guidance to help you when moving and getting your deposit back. Our feedback has thought of everything you haven’t, and we’re proud to boast that students keep telling us how helpful it is! We can even offer you a Zoom appointment where you can ask our Housing Advisor about any other random bits still bothering you.
Unfortunately, unlike previous years, this year continuing students are not able to apply to live in halls from September 2023. This is due to the temporary closure of Kingswood Hall for maintenance works. Some students with disabilities might still be guaranteed accommodation by the Disability and Neurodiversity team. For further information on this, you can contact the Advice Centre.
We strongly recommend that you do not sign or pay for anything without getting your contract checked by us first. The University of London Housing Services can look over it and identify any possible problems. Nobody should be pressuring you to sign a contract; you are meant to have time to read over and consider its terms!
Please start by having a look at their information about looking for accommodation. You could also take a look at their Facebook group, University of London Flatmate finder, where you can see posts from other students looking for housemates, or post yourself.
If you are viewing houses, we have a checklist you can use to make sure you’re keeping an eye on anything important to keep in mind when moving into a property. When it comes to signing for your property, you can make use of our free contract checking service. Just send a copy of your contract to us via email.
Whilst private housing is usually cheaper than University halls, if you do have any concerns about money or being able to afford housing you can reach out to the Financial Wellbeing Team who will be happy to help.
Our Advice Centre is a free, independent, and confidential service for all students here at Royal Holloway. Our friendly, experienced, and professional staff will provide a listening ear and offer general and specialist advice. We’re here to support you with a whole range of issues, big and small, and if we’re not the best people to help you with a particular issue, we’ll point you in the right direction.
Our advisors hold drop-ins in-person and on Zoom every Tuesday and Thursday from 1:30-3:30pm and on Wednesdays on Zoom only from 5:30-7:30pm during term time. You can find more information on our events calendar on how to join the drop-ins.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or to ask for a different meeting time.
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