fresher house hunting

5 Fresher House Hunting Tips

It’s that time of year again – Student house hunting season is upon us. Deciding where and who to live with is a major decision in first year. But don’t fret, here are 5 key tips from Student Cribs that will guarantee that you get a great house and don’t get taken advantage of:


Some undesirable lettings agents will take advantage of students with unnecessary fees. These fees are ambiguous and relate to things such as ‘holding’ and ‘administration’ fees.

Always clarify what you’re paying for. If the letting agent is uncomfortable explaining what you’re paying for this should sound warning bells!


Before viewing a house always ask to see the gas safety certificate and energy performance certificate. Both of these are a legal requirement. Once again this will show you how legit the landlord is.

They also provide an indicator of your future landlord’s responsiveness. Put it this way – if they can’t sort out certification before you move in, what makes you think that they’ll be quick to sort out your maintenance issues down the line?

Deposit Protection

This is another issue year on year. ALWAYS make sure you know where your deposit is going, don’t just pay it and hope for the best. It’s a legal requirement for your deposit to be held in a government accredited deposit protection scheme (Such as The DPS)

This can be a huge problem with private landlords, who will keep the deposit in their own personal account – this can get messy and is difficult to dispute deposit deductions when your tenancy ends.

fresher house hunting 2

Proximity to University

It’s likely that during all of the excitement of picking your group and booking viewings that you’ve lost sight of the most important aspect of your house search – Location!

Make sure your new pad is within an easy commuting distance of your campus. There’s nothing worse than having to get a long bus to a 9am lecture after a heavy night out (If you go in at all that is)

Group Dropouts

We’ve all got that one flaky friend from halls that we’re sceptical if they’ll make it to a lecture, let alone sign a tenancy agreement.

These dropouts often occur when you’re about to secure your dream house – but don’t let that dissuade you, post a status on Facebook and on sites like Easy Room Mate to fill the spare bedrooms.

Got any more house hunting tips? Let us know in the comments below

This article was written in collaboration with Student Cribs, however all opinions are reflective with Uni Student Life. Student Cribs are reinventing University living with quality stylish homes in all major university towns and cities in the UK. The picture features one of Student Cribs’ Durham Student Houses!