As promise, I’m back with a brand new series of article this week! And it’s the first intro for our house haunting series, today I will be present all the essential preparation and introduce the sources include everything for house haunting. If this is what you have been looking for, check this out!😉
First, I will like to declare who require to look for a house ‘outside’ university, it is not just off-campus accommodation but living in the private household. If you are a first year student, postgraduate or doing a foundation year, as long as this is your first year here in university of Surrey, you will be guarantee to live in university accommodation whether if it is on or off-campus. (If you apply to Surrey via UCAS system, you need to put Surrey as your first choice to secure a university accommodation*) But if you are a second year or third year student, yah house haunting is definitely a thing you must have been through. Sounds scary but actually just doing enough research and paying attention on the time, everything should be fine, and you’ve got my tip!
*Please see the policy applying for university accommodation:
If you need to find the house outside university, the first thing is ask yourself, who are you living with? Some of them will keep living with the flatmates they have met in their first year, if you get along with each other well, just like me. Or you can find your friends or coursemates to live with, if not you can still live on your own, that’s another option too. According to my experience on finding houses in Guildford, a house with 4-5 bedrooms are the most common household you can find. You can still find other options in terms of numbers of the bedrooms, if your group is bigger or smaller. If you are only two or three people, but find a pretty decent house with 5 bedrooms, you can even post the house information online to find some more future flatmates. If you haven’t find any people to live with, going online and find another group of people is also pretty doable and you get the chance to meet new people too! But I’d say consider very carefully who you will be living with, or it will be a pain to live with someone you can’t stand😅
Now you’ve got your group, it is time to find the house! There are plenty of agencies in town and you can just easily go online to their website to see whether if there is any houses that you are interested and satisfied with the price etc. I will list out the main housing agencies later. Apart from the agencies in town, university also provide a housing scheme for students, which is a service called USL. I think I have mentioned few times in my previous articles before. USL is University of Surrey Lettings, it is an organization under the accommodation service that provide houses which is managed by the university, so it has its own landlord but university is in charge of the house, just think of university being the agency. Your group can apply to this particular USL scheme specify the number of bedrooms you need, the preferred location and acceptable price and the deadline for the application is differed every year*. Everyone of you in the group will need to choose the same condition and apply at the same time. After the results came out, you will know if you have get in to the USL house and the procedure will carry on from house viewing to contract signing. Reasons of why USL scheme is popular between the students is as the university is being the agency, there isn’t any ridiculous commission fee and the landlords of the house and contracts has been checked by the university so it is more secured compare to the other agencies.
找到你的室友之後現在就是要正式找房子啦～鎮上有很多房仲業者你們可以一起去諮詢，或是更簡單你們可以上網找有沒有符合你們條件的房子，我在最後也會列出一些Guildford有的房仲業者給大家參考。除了房仲業者以外，我在之前的幾篇文章應該提到過學校提供的系統USL，他其實也算學校accommodation service底下的方案提供學校經手的房子給所有申請的同學，也可以想成學校擔任房仲的角色。想申請的一組人可以一起根據不同的要求，像是房間數、地段還有價格來申請，每年的申請截止時段都不太一樣* 在同一組想申請的每一個人都要在同時上網選擇一樣的條件上網申請。結果出來之後，你們就可以知道到底有沒有獲得資格，然後接著繼續一般從看房到簽約的過程。USL在學生之間這麼熱門的原因是因為由於早市由學校經手的，房子的狀況、房東跟合約都由學校經手檢查過，然後以學校當作房仲也沒有像外面一班的房仲業者收取很高的佣金，所以這個方案也是對學生來說相對有保證的。
For more conditions and terms please see the website:
When it comes to online searching, you can either go to every specific agency’s website and start searching your preferred house type and location. I will recommend a website called “Zoopla” that includes similar houses managed by different agencies so you can easily compare them at the same time. In Guildford, the average price of the accommodation for the students outside university is between £120-150 a week, with or without bills and the bills are approximately around £5-60 a month depends on people. The location can be easily be separate into “Town Centre”, “Park Barn” and “Stoughton”, price varies due to the location, the closer to town or Tesco is more expensive but very convenient. Park Barn and Stoughton are further but cheaper, however, transportation fee will then need to be considered.
Map in Guildford to give you some basic idea!
在網路上找房子的時候，你可以上各個不同仲介通司的網站上瀏覽，不過我會推薦用一個叫“Zoopla”的網站，它同時結合了不同符合你搜尋條件的房子，所以你就不需要一個一個上不同業者的網站上找，這個網站會統一秀給你看，你也可以直接比較。在Guildford，學生住宅的價格平均都落在一週£120-150左右，有些包含水電網路等等有些沒有包，不過這些支出一個月大致上是 £5-60根據生活習慣。而生活區域的話則是分為”Town Centre”, “Park Barn” 跟 “Stoughton”這三個大區域，越靠近鎮中心或是Tesco/學校越貴但相對便利性高；住在”Park Barn” 或 “Stoughton”房租比較便宜善距離也比較遠，交通費也就需要一並列入考慮了。
Zoopla website: https://www.zoopla.co.uk/
After giving you those information and sources above, now you can go ahead and discuss with your friends about the house. In the next series of housing, I will share my personal experience and what need to be aware when signing the contract, dealing with agency etc. So don’t miss out cause there are more in the next article!
See you guys!