House Hunting for Freshers – Your Guide

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Hunting for your first house at university is going to be exciting, but it can also be daunting - especially if you don’t know where to start looking. The key to finding your perfect house is to start looking early - if you can, start looking before the Christmas holidays. There are quite a few sites where you can search for houses and Nottingham Unipol is always really helpful. Have a look -  http://www.unipol.org.uk/nottingham/. On here you can find houses or flats that are available, reviews about landlords and even spare rooms if you haven’t found a group that you want to live with.
 
A crucial aspect is location. Living in Lenton, either on Lenton Boulevard or the roads branching off from Derby Road, is always a good choice because you are near to everything and everyone. You'll find that choosing to live in Lenton means a half an hour walk from campus, twenty-five minute walk from the town centre and a maximum ten minute walk from any of your friends in Lenton – what more could you want?
 
Once you have decided on your ideal location, search for a house or flat that fits within your criteria – the right number of bedrooms, a back garden, within your price range, at least one parking space, or whatever it may be that ticks your boxes. Once you have found the ‘ideal house’, organise a viewing with the landlord or estate agents. FACT – tenants hate it when random people keep turning up unannounced to look around their house, so organising a viewing is the best way, and means you will get to meet the landlord, too.
 
Things to avoid:
- Alleyways next to or behind your house, even if the house seems perfect. Alleyways create easy access to your house for burglars and other unwanted guests.
- Houses without locks. Believe it or not, some houses don’t have secure locks (some do not even have locks on bedroom doors), so for your own privacy, put this on the check list.
 
Landlords or estate agents can be extremely difficult, so take time to research them before signing your house. You can find out from the university which have had good or bad reviews. A source told us about their experience of currently living in a Student Living house, stating "I have had nothing but trouble with them since the beginning - there were even bed bugs in my bed when I first arrived – HORRIBLE - so avoid them!". Katie Homes Lettings have a very good reputation, although their apartments and houses are a little on the expensive side, but maybe worth a look. Cunningham Lettings are extremely helpful, have houses in all locations throughout Lenton and are reasonably priced. It all depends on whether you are looking to move into a bachelor pad (if so, check these student cribs out, they are incredible: http://student- cribs.com/location/nottingham/), a cheap and cheerful student house, or just a nice, modern house at a reasonable price.
 
When you start searching keep all of the above in mind, and if you are stuck with anything, get hold of someone who has gone through the process. And just remember, putting a little more effort into looking will be worth it when it comes to living in your pad for the next year!

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