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The Ultimate Guide To International Student Accommodation In The UK

Once you have your offer letter from your chosen UK university, it’s time to kickstart your post-arrival preparations. While you focus on booking your tickets and choosing the right health insurance, one more element requires your full attention: selecting your ideal UK accommodation for international students. Your stay in the UK is determined by your academic and career choices.

Thus, it is important that you consider every aspect that contributes towards helping you choose academic accommodations in this country. But with so much information available online with regard to student accommodation in UK, the process of selecting one can be confusing and tedious. Thus, to help you make a suitable accommodation investment, we have shared a complete guide on the process, options, cost and tips related to accommodation in UK for Indian students.

Types of Student Accommodation in the UK

The best part about living in the UK, there are various types of student accommodations available to choose from. Based on your lifestyle factors and budgetary needs, you can opt to choose any one of the student accommodations listed below:

  1. On-campus Accommodations

There are two types of accommodations available for you to choose from. The common one is on-campus accommodation. As the name suggests, students will be staying in a housing property on their selected university’s campus. There are two types of on-campus accommodations, which are:

  • Halls of Residence: In this housing, there are multiple rooms which students have to share. Students also share a few of the basic amenities offered by the university accommodation services, such as study halls, bathrooms, meals, etc. This housing is growing popular as it is one of the most affordable housing plans and is convenient for students to walk to the university. Apart from this, the university allows students of all cultures to stay under one roof, making it easier for the latter to make friends and study together.
  • Private Halls of Residence: In this housing, the concept of the above remains the same. However, this form of accommodation is managed by private companies instead of universities. Here you will receive more amenities than the basic ones such as gyms, etc. You will be sharing your room and other facilities with a student who may or may not be from your campus. If you opt to share a room, you and your roommate must share the attached bathroom available. This kind of housing is best suited for students who wish to have more comprehensive access to student services in the UK.
  1. Off-campus Accommodations

As the name suggests, this form of housing is related to students staying away from the campus. This option of housing becomes popular after students graduate from their first-year at the university. There are three suitable accommodations available:

  • Shared flats: If you stay off-campus, you can opt for a shared flat option. In this type of housing, you can share your flat space with your friends or another roommate. This is one of the convenient forms of housing because, as students, you either pay for yourself or share the expenses. Students looking to stay outside campus but on a tight budget should opt for this kind of housing.
  • Homestays: Students who wish to stay off-campus can also look into the homestay option. Here you will be staying with a family who will take care of your needs in return for a monthly payment. This housing is a great option as you get to stay with a warm family, learn better about UK and access better food and living facilities.
  • Renting a private apartment: If the other two options didn’t interest you, you can opt for a private apartment. After some years, students tend to opt for private apartments because the latter provides privacy, the ability to live independently, etc. While this is an expensive form of housing as the rent varies from one location to another, we suggest you earn enough to manage this form of housing since you will also have to simultaneously cater to your other academic and living expenses.

Cost of Student Accommodation Across Major Cities in the UK

Before investing in any of the above-listed student accommodation options, you should first analyse the cost based on the accommodation and location you choose. When you have this data, it becomes easy to compare which student accommodation matches your budget and caters to your lifestyle needs.

  1. Cost of On-campus student accommodation

The cost to stay at the hall of residences on the university campus ranges from £400 and can go up to £1,000/month. These prices can vary based on the accommodation you choose; thus, it is essential that you check the universities official accommodation page to learn the exact amount.

In the case of private student halls, the cost can range from £400 and can go up to £1600/month. These figures again vary based on the amenity choices made.

  1. Cost of Off-campus student accommodation

The off-campus housing cost to study in UK varies as per the accommodation chosen. For instance, if you opt for a studio apartment, the rent can go up to £500/per week. But if you take a standard room, including the utility bills, the costs will be £280/per week.

Note: As per the UK Visa and Immigration, international students must show financial proof of £1,334/month (for exhibiting 9 months – £12,006) if they stay in London. For outside London, you should exhibit financial proof of £1,023/month (for exhibiting 9 months – £9,207) if they stay outside of London.

  1. Cost of student accommodation across UK cities

The cost of student accommodation in the UK also varies based on the city you choose to live in. Based on the standard living costs (which include food, groceries, entertainment, utility bills, etc), this figure can vary accordingly. To give you a better overview, here is the average cost of rent in popular UK cities:

UK Cities Average Rent Per Month
London £1,200 - £1,300
Brighton £800- £1,300
Manchester £800- £1,100
Oxford £1,100- £1,700
Glasgow £800- £1,000
Edinburgh £700- £1,000
Birmingham £700- £1,200

Tips to Keep in Mind When Choosing Academic Accommodations in the UK

With all the information shared above, choosing your ideal student accommodation in the UK has become easy. However, before you get started, it is vital that you remember a few tips in order to make an appropriate investment in any of your chosen accommodation in UK for international students:

  1. Conduct a thorough accommodation research

As an international student, you are required first to conduct thorough research on the student accommodation space in the UK. You should be aware of what are the types of accommodations available, which are the best areas to live in, what are the required living costs, how much the rent will be, etc.

When you have the latter in mind, it becomes easy for you to create a budget which you can cater to while staying in the UK. When conducting research on student accommodations in the UK, ensure you ask yourself the following questions:

  • What is my budget?
  • Which student accommodation matches my budget?
  • What facilities will I receive or expect to receive from the chosen student accommodation?
  • Which type of student accommodation should I choose?
  • Am I comfortable sharing my space with other students?
  • Which type of accommodation matches my lifestyle choices?
  • How can I pay for my student room rent?
  • Which location would I prefer to live in?
  1. Select the right location

It is important to choose a good location when selecting an academic accommodation in the UK. If you wish to stay off-campus, ensure you cater to the following tips:

  • How safe is the location?
  • Is the neighbourhood friendly?
  • Is it a student-friendly location?
  • Are there nearby markets to make basic purchases?
  • Is this location closer to the university?
  • Is there good public transport in the location?

By answering the above-listed questions, you can align your search of finding good student accommodation in an exceptional location.

  1. Consider other living costs

Apart from your accommodation, there are other expenses which you need to cater to such as internet, electricity, groceries, dining out, entertainment, etc. Thus, it is vital that you also calculate these when calculating your total living cost. This is better as it gives you an overall idea of how much rent you can pay while simultaneously catering to these expenses.

  1. Consider your safety first

UK is going to be a new place for you. It will take time for you to settle in. It is always better to choose a student accommodation that is in a safe area or has a better neighbourhood. While the UK is home to multiple student-friendly cities, it is advices to stay at the on-campus accommodation during your first year of studies. During this period, you will be able to learn better about the UK and which location is safer and trusted by most international students.

  1. Check the accommodation services offered

When you invest in student accommodations, always ensure you receive better facilities in return for the money paid. For instance, if you’re applying to stay on-campus, whose rent is £400/month, check what facilities the university offers, such as a bed, cupboard, study table, internet, etc. It is always better to invest in a student accommodation that provides the basic amenities.

  1. Apply for scholarships opportunities

Scholarships aren’t limited to supporting students for their tuition fee payments. There is a range of scholarships that also helps international students to cover living costs such as rent, room, travel, etc. To apply for scholarships, visit your selected university’s official website to access the same.

  1. Apply for part-time jobs

As an international student, you must apply for a part-time job to cover your living costs while staying in the UK. Thus, it is better to choose accommodation in an area which lets you travel quickly to your job location. If you stay at the on-campus accommodation, you will find multiple in-campus jobs available for you to apply to (check the university website for jobs available).

If you stay off-campus, ensure you choose an accommodation that is either walkable or has access to public transport when travelling to your job location.

  1. Visit the home or have a virtual tour

Before you book your student accommodation, ensure you have a look at the accommodation. You can visit the same either physically or via a virtual tour. It is important to have a view of your new home to ensure that what you saw in the pictures online matches the description.

  1. Check the contract carefully before signing

If you plan to stay off-campus, there will be a contract/lease agreement you have to sign for staying in a shared flat or private apartment. This contract includes all information such as how much deposit should be paid, what you must do in case you wish to leave the accommodation, etc. Ensure you read such contracts carefully before signing them to avoid mishaps or misunderstandings in the future.

How to Book Student Accommodation in the UK?

Now that you have everything you need to know about accommodation for students in UK, it’s time to decide and book your new home. There are 5 simple ways of booking a UK accommodation. Here are the details:

  1. Connect with your university

The option to choose an on-campus accommodation will be shared with you in your email once you receive your offer letter. The university will send a link which will direct you to the halls of residence where you can make a choice on which student accommodation suits you best. If you have decided to book an on-campus accommodation, ensure the same is booked at the earliest, as these types of accommodations fill faster.

  1. Connect with agencies

To help you find the ideal house, you can make use of agencies that can assist you better in this process. By paying a small fee, you can seek the assistance of such services to help you find a home that matches your interest. To name a few, such agencies are Zoopla, Spareroom, Rightmove, etc.

  1. Engage with housing providers

There are also multiple housing providers that make it easy for you to find the ideal student accommodation in the UK. These providers have a search link on their website where by entering your city, university or property, a list of housing options will be available for you to explore. You can also access multiple information such as the rent details, amenities available, view the room photos and more. To name a few, such housing providers are Amberstudent, Stanza Living, etc.

  1. Get in touch with study abroad experts

Study abroad experts are another great way to find your ideal home in the UK. There are a few study abroad experts that don’t limit their services to catering to the academic needs of students alone. They also help them in finding a great home during their study abroad process. One such is Collegepond.

  1. Speak to your seniors or student support groups

Another way to book your student accommodation in the UK is by connecting with your seniors or student support groups. These are the right individuals who can help you find a cost-effective home that also matches your other housing-related criteria. Through this method, you can easily connect with the right people and book your student accommodation faster.


With the information shared above, you can now easily select from the various options available for accommodation in UK for international students. It is advised to check every available option and alternatives when choosing a UK home. Remember that you have to stay in your new home till your academic studies are completed; thus, it is essential that you make the right choice when choosing a suitable student accommodation. However, if you wish to seek assistance when deciding on a student accommodation in the UK, feel free to contact our expert counsellors, who can guide you through this process. Get started by booking a free 1-1 counselling session today!

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Address: Office No. 204, 2nd Floor, ML Spaces, Dashrathlal Joshi Rd. Opp. Old Jain Mandir, Vile Parle West, Mumbai – 400056.


Email: info@collegepond.com


Call Us:  022-46003655


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Copyright © 2002 – 2024 | All Rights Reserved | Collegepond Counsellors Pvt. Ltd.