In the run up to the Accommodation Fair on 25th March, Manchester Student Homes are running an interactive information stand on the ground floor of University Place. You can find out information about the services that they offer and if you drop in between 12 and 2pm there are all sorts of activities to get involved in (including the chance to build your Lego dream home)!
Finding accommodation can be exciting, surprising and sometimes stressful; choosing a location (Victoria Park, Rusholme, Fallowfield?), a house, the right internet provider and housemates! In December we posted some great general advice when student house hunting (see Looking for Accommodation) and now we want to share some real stories of the experiences your fellow students have had, and invite you to share your own. We hope that you enjoy the first of our posts.
“we constantly had boiler issues or water leaking from the bathroom into the kitchen”
“I lived in halls in my first year and I decided to live with some of the girls on my floor. We looked at houses online and went to visit a few, sometimes together and sometimes on our own (depending on our various timetables). I got back one afternoon after viewing a house on my own and the others were acting strangely. I found out that they had visited a house earlier in the day and had agreed to live there, without me. I felt like I’d been dumped and I couldn’t believe that they had sent me to view a house after they had secretly decided to leave me out. At least I found out what they were like before we moved in together.
Most people had already got into the groups that they were going to live in so it was a bit awkward trying to find new housemates but I asked one of the peer mentors on my course if she knew of anyone that was still looking and she said that I could live with her boyfriend.
He and another boy on my course already had a house and they were looking for a third housemate so after a friendly lunch in a student pub (to meet the other boy) I signed on the dotted line.
I absolutely loved living with them and we’re still good friends (even though we’ve moved out now), but the house was a shed and we constantly had boiler issues or water leaking from the bathroom into the kitchen. I also cut myself on the spikey walls a few times; it was as if someone had started to sand off woodchip wallpaper, given up halfway through and covered the whole sorry mess in gloss paint, creating a spikey wall of pain. I find this hilarious now, but I also found it hilarious at the time because the atmosphere was so good that it made up for the building.
If I had been more in control of my circumstances I would have chosen a better house, but I couldn’t have chosen better housemates. My advice is to be proactive (ask for help if you need it) try not to worry, and make the best of the environment that you find yourself in. Also, if you’re going to live in a house with water pressure issues, make friends with someone who has a power shower and visit them regularly.”
If you would like to share your student accommodation experience, just email firstname.lastname@example.org