Private Home

Private home accommodation

Live with a local resident landlord

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.

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.

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.

Disadvantages include

  • 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 may have less freedom to bring friends or guests home.
  • You are living by someone else’s house rules.

Additional tips

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.

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