As a student, looking for student accommodation in London, the most exciting place in the world to learn, you will be part of one of the biggest ‘campuses’ in the World – an entire city! The “Big Smoke” is spoilt with some of the best university and higher education institutions in the world, including UCL, LSE, Kings College, Westminster and Birkbeck, many of which are internationally recognised which increases your chances of a rewarding career when you finish your studies!
For most first year students, their university campuses and student halls are likely to be your first port of call, but the majority of students prefer private accommodation, especially if it helps cut the walking distance from lectures of the students’ union, as well as avoiding the communal showers!
For Private Renters, we’ve put together a handy guide, based on our 30 years’ experience advising students renting in London.
If you are thinking of house sharing, make sure you choose your housemates wisely. One of the biggest issues that occurs with shared homes is disagreements within the house! House sharing, especially with friends, sounds relatively easy going (and fun) but living with people isn’t easy, however well you know them! After all, we all have friends we couldn’t live with!
As you are entering into a legally binding contract, if issues occur, you cannot simply walk away so it is important to have an understanding with your sharers and maybe consider setting out ‘house rules’ in advance of agreeing to share.
Please also remember that you are responsible for paying rent, utilities and bills as a collective, not individually, which means you’re equally liable if payments are missed! Agree in advance who will be responsible for which payments. If you’re lucky, you might find someone organised and happy to take on the responsibility of managing all the bills, otherwise look to fairly distribute the duties between housemates! Sometimes housemates set up a joint bank account which can make it easier for payments and keeping records.
Beyond working out how many bedrooms you need, whether it’s a small affordable studio apartment for yourself or a secure home to share with friends, it’s important to decide what’s most important to you for where you want to live. List your essentials so you’re prepared for what you’re looking for. To help, we’ve put together a list of ‘essentials’ our specialist lettings team advised our student renters are looking for:-
With a sophisticated private rental sector, many residential buildings in Central London can also offer “luxury” amenities such as 24-hour concierge, private outside space, underground parking or even on-site gyms for residents. These facilities are fantastic to have at your disposal but they are luxuries which could stretch your budget beyond breaking point! If you’re looking for something special, we can certainly cater for such comforts, but we recommend budgeting for the additional costs in advance!
Picking your neighbourhood should be relatively easy but be prepared to discover new London villages, as you might be surprised what they have to offer, especially when it comes to price! Given our locality, LDG specialises in properties located in the West End, which include Neighbourhoods such as Fitzrovia, Bloomsbury, Soho, Covent Garden and Marylebone, however we often list properties a little further afield such as Holborn, Farringdon and Camden, which we know are equally popular for students!
Before you start viewing flats, make sure you produce a sensible budget for living in London. This will include spending a little time budgeting for costs which may not immediately come to mind. For example, you’ll need to budget for additional costs such as utilities (gas, electricity and water), insurance, TV license and broadband. We have listed below a couple of useful websites to help get you started!
We’ve also produced a handy excel spreadsheet which helps you budget and work out your monthly costs. Please contact our Lettings Team for a copy.
Whilst researching your budget, do also take time to search your local amenities! Consider the commute to university, gyms, sport centres, places of worship, supermarkets as well as of course, the places you want to relax and have downtime!
Once you’re ready to start viewing student accommodation, you need to be prepared with the right questions, many of which should be asked in advance of viewing.
LDG’s charges are very transparent. When you visit our offices, we clearly outline our charges on the wall, otherwise you can click here to see more about our charges.
Full-time students are exempt from paying council tax but part-time students are still required to pay. For this reason, full-time and part-time students tend not to share, as part-time students will be required to pay the entire council tax bill themselves, unless the household agree to contribute.
When using a reputable lettings agency to find private accommodation, you will need to produce at least six weeks’ rent deposit, 6 months’ rent in advance and administration fees in order to secure your property.
Remember, a transfer from overseas can take up to 5 working days to ‘clear’ so we advise having the money you need available immediately. Competition for property in London’s West End can be fierce and viewers who delay applying to let accommodation can often lose out on renting their first choice flat.
Once you’ve found the right student accommodation, being prepared can make the difference in ensuring you secure your first choice option. With fierce competition for the best properties, any delay in producing the correct paperwork or funds could delay your move or, in the worst-case scenario, you lose out to someone who can move faster!
We have listed below the documents you will need to have readily available.
With the above documents readily available, contact LDG immediately for details of how our tenancy application process works and we will happily guide you through the process making it as simple as possible.
Please note, unlike some of our competitors, LDG do not take a deposit to place an offer on your chosen property. We only take a holding deposit once the Landlord has accepted your offer and you’re ready to sign!
It is extremely important that you choose the right agent to make sure your deposit is safeguarded and you can rely on the agent’s duty of care during your tenancy, as well as have an up to date contract and a government backup in case you have any complaints.
LDG are members of ARLA Propertymark, TDS deposit scheme & The Property Ombudsman.
Whilst LDG primarily represent the Landlords, the satisfaction of our tenants is equally important to us and we hope you will enjoy a Stress Free Student Life with LDG. Established in 1987, we have over 30 years’ experience advising students on renting in the West End – and in fact have won awards for our services to real estate agency. We have a young, diverse lettings team, who are dedicated to making your time living the London life as enjoyable as possible. Whilst, we can’t take away your exam stress, or even stop your family worrying about you, we can help make your relocation hassle free, with safe, secure student accommodation that will leave you and your family assured you’re living the London life well!
If you have family visiting you, as well as student accommodation, we offer a variety of Serviced Apartments across Central London, available for short to medium stays (from 1 night to 3 months stays, sometimes longer). We would be delighted to offer students renting through LDG a discount for their family visiting. Please contact our Serviced Apartment team, or speak to your lettings agent, for further information.
Most students will rent throughout the duration of their university years; however, it is common for parents to purchase apartments as student accommodation to be enjoyed by their children, sometimes with a future of keeping it as a rental investment. Our friendly residential sales team are at hand to advise on sensible buys for a student market with access to numerous properties, listed on our website, and beyond with affiliation with the wider real estate community.
LDG Estate Agents
39 Foley Street, London, W1W 7TP
0207 580 1010