Finding Accommodation After Clearing
It is an unfortunate reality that getting a place at university through clearing may limit your options when it comes to accommodation. However, there are still plenty of ways to ensure that you get the best possible living situation for your first year. Here are some tips on how to make the most of your accommodation options.
Look into what your university offers
Most universities will guarantee some form of accommodation for their clearing students, however policies on this matter will vary and it’s important that you make yourself aware of what your university is offering. While some will guarantee a place in their own halls, others may partner with private companies or landlords that they will allocate you to instead if their halls are full. Make sure you look out for any deadlines as some universities will only guarantee a spot in their halls if you apply by a certain date. You may also find that your university offers open days for their clearing students, which gives you an opportunity to have a look at the accommodation they have before you go.
Communicate with your university
Although a lot of this information can be found on your university’s website, it’s always beneficial to reach out to the university directly to ensure you have the correct information. This also gives you opportunity to ask any questions and get personalised advice from someone well acquainted with the system. Universities should have an accommodation office that you can contact to discuss your living arrangements. Some also have clearing hotlines that may be able to offer more advice on finding accommodation through clearing specifically. Contacting their Students’ Union is another way to get good advice, as the students will be able to give you honest insights into their own experiences and help point you in the right directions.
Consider private accommodation
It’s possible that you will find yourself unhappy with what your university is able to offer, in which case it might be a good idea to think about finding a private accommodation to live in. There is an assumption that private accommodation is much more expensive than university halls, however this is not always the case. Much depends on where you are (for instance, in Yorkshire and the East Midlands private accommodation is cheaper on average) and which type of accommodation you opt for. Private halls are usually more expensive, and will have a similar feel to university halls. This is a good option if you want to ensure that your preferences are met without losing out on a halls experience, and there are various networks that can help you find one that’s right for you.
You also have the option to find privately rented houses or flats, which can end up being much cheaper when you share with other people. Try finding social media groups of other students at your university who have gone through clearing, you could find they are in a similar situation and you can arrange to find a place to live together.
You may feel like where you live in your first year will make or break your social life and general university experience, but this is definitely not the case. Whilst halls are a great way to meet people and make friends, it is by no means the only way. Plenty of students make friends by getting involved with university life, joining clubs or societies.
Make a change
Most importantly, know that it’s likely that you can change your living situation if you choose something that is ultimately not the right place for you. If you speak to your university they should try and make alternative arrangements for you. Usually, if you were not able to get a place at your university’s halls at the beginning of the term you might have more luck later on, after some students may have dropped out or moved somewhere else. Don’t worry about joining later than everyone else, you will still be able to make great friends as long as you go in with a positive attitude.
At the end of the day, accommodation is only one part of a vast range of experiences you will have at university, so try not to stress too much if you find you can’t get your ideal place after going through clearing, you can still have an amazing time!
Win a month’s free rent
If you decide to look for private accommodation for your first year and you make an enquiry on www.accommodationforstudents.com you will automatically be entered into a draw to win 1 month’s free rent. We also have a specialist team on hand if you need a little extra help to find your place during clearing.