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Homestay/Private Home

Homestay Host Families

Homestay landlords are resident landlords, sometimes with children, who offer accommodation inclusive of meals and the opportunity to live as part of their family. No more than two students can stay with a host at any one time. It is a very popular option with students who are not residents in the UK and/or who may be looking to improve their English language skills.

Private Home Accommodation

Private home accommodation means living in somebody's home but on a more independent basis - under a self-catering arrangement (where you would be given access to the kitchen to prepare your own meals). If you have three or more rooms to let to students you will be required to comply with the local authority accreditation scheme.

There is no such thing as a typical resident landlord. Some are young professionals or recent graduates, others are middle aged couples and some are retired. Although most students’ first preference would probably be to share with other students, it is worth considering the advantages of this arrangement as well as its disadvantages.

The advantages include:

  • Good availability.
  • The rent is generally cheaper (although this is not always the case) and bills are often included in the rent.
  • Owner occupied properties are generally kept in better repair than rented properties.
  • You do not have to commit yourself to a contract. Generally if you pay weekly or monthly you would need to give that amount of notice, this means if it's not working, you can end the arrangement fairly painlessly.
  • All homes are visited every two years by a representative from the Accommodation Office.

The disadvantages are:

  • It’s not your home and if you fall out with your landlord/landlady, you will usually have no option but to find somewhere else to live.
  • You will often have less freedom to bring friends or guests home and this may leave you feeling isolated.
  • You are living by someone else’s house rules.

Always insist on having a rent book that both parties sign each time money changes hands, so that payment of rent is recorded. If you pay weekly you should give your host a week’s notice if you wish to leave. If you pay monthly, when terminating your contract, you should give your host a month’s notice. We therefore recommend that you pay weekly until you are settled and happy. Under no circumstances should you pay a whole semester’s rent in advance unless you are certain you want to stay. Refunds are often hard to obtain. Occasionally you may be asked to pay a deposit when renting a room and many hosts will require a retainer fee or full rental fee if you are away on holiday but still wish to retain the room.

Data Protection

Please be aware that the University of Chichester will hold personal data (e.g. Address, Contact information) of all Hosts who provide accommodation to our international students.

This information will only be accessible to selected staff in the Accommodation Office and the International Short Programme Unit (ISPU) for internal purposes only in accordance with our Homestay Host (Landlord) Policy. You are able to view our Homestay Host (Landlord) Privacy Notice here.