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Housing Options Available

housingstreetimagenarrowbannerWhile many students will live in a house or flat share with other students or young professionals, there are different options available depending on your personal preferences, budgets and the length of contract you require. 

Below you will find a summary of the more common housing options available to students.

Flat/House Share
  • In a flat or house-share, each student will usually have their own room; the kitchen, bathroom and other communal space would be shared.
  • Ideally, each room should have a bed, desk and somewhere to store your clothes/belongings.
  • Sharers have a greater degree of independence than those living at home or in halls.
  • Sharers might all sign one joint contract or each have individual tenancies.
  • Sharers are commonly pairs, or groups of 3-4. Larger properties for 5+ people are rare in central London and may be subject to HMO licensing.
  • Students can either form a group and go house-hunting together or look for vacancies advertised by landlords, agents or other students in existing house-shares. 
Typical Contract Type               Assured Shorthold Tenancy
Contract Length Typically 12 months but shorter contracts are available. Additionally you may have, or be able to negotiate, a break clause
What to look out for

Before you decide on your house-hunting group:

  • Have a frank discussion with potential flatmates as to your expectations on budgets, areas, cleaning, noise, guests. Good friends do not always make ideal flatmates. 
When dealing with an estate agent or a landlord:
  • Is the landlord or letting agent a member of a professional body/accreditation scheme?
  • Don't be afraid to ask questions and get everything in writing.  If you don't ask, they may not have to tell you. 
    • Are any bills included (i.e.: gas, electricity, water etc.)?
    • Have there been problems with pests/mould/neighbours?
  • If there are 5 or more of you sharing, does the property need to be licensed as an HMO?
Living Alone
  • Studio accommodation consists of a self-contained unit, where you will have access to your own bathroom and kitchen.
  • A cheaper option would be bedsit accommodation. This might consist of a room, with bathroom and kitchen facilities shared between a number of other residents in the building. Bedsit accommodation may be subject to HMO licensing.
Typical Contract Type Assured Shorthold Tenancy if no part of the accommodation is shared with the landlord.
Contract Length Typically 12 months. Sometimes a 6 month 'break clause' can be negotiated.
What to look out for Whether dealing with an estate agent or a landlord:
  • Make sure you can read through a written contract in advance
  • Is the landlord or agent a member of a professional body/accreditation scheme?
  • Are any bills included (i.e.: gas, electricity, water etc.)?                                                                                            
Private Student Residences
  • There are many student residences in London operated by private companies, charities and housing associations.
  • These are open to students from any College or University and are ideal for those who want the supportive, sociable environment of a student residence.
  • Rooms can be a mixture of studios, single en-suite (in cluster flats), twins and dormitory-style.
  • The prices are generally all-inclusive (and sometimes negotiable).
  • Student residences can be booked from abroad/outside London. 
Typical Contract Type Assured Shorthold Tenancy
Contract Length  Up to 51 weeks. There may be a premium for shorter contracts
What to look out for
  • Check if there are any early termination/break clauses in the contract (if you interrupt from your course, you will remain liable for the room, and may be responsible for finding a replacement). 
  • Check that the provider has signed-up to the ANUK National Code of Standards for Larger Developments.
  • Booking early and/or paying all your rent in advance can sometimes secure a discount.
  • Places are offered on a first-come, first-served basis, but you might be able to negotiate a lower rent/shorter contract if places are still available near the start of term.
Living with a Resident Landlord/Lodging 
  • Many Londoners rent out spare rooms in their flats/houses.
  • A lodger will have their own room, but share a bathroom, kitchen and communal facilities with the landlord.
  • This can be a more flexible way of renting, as lodgers are not often tied down by long contracts.
  • Can offer a cheaper way of living in central locations. 
Typical Contract Type Licence agreement – you will most likely be an excluded occupier
Contract Length

Contracts are flexible and length of stay will depend on what the landlord is looking for. It is advisable to have an open-ended contract, with a notice period of one month.

Some landlords will stipulate a minimum or maximum length of stay. This should be made clear to you at the beginning and written into the contract. 

What to look out for Check that you and your landlord are compatible/could easily live together:
  • What are the ‘house-rules’ concerning guests, noise, use of the kitchen etc.?
  • What time does he/she leave for work and return home?
  • Is there a place for you to study?

Ask for a written contract; at a minimum ask for core terms to be written down. 

Remember that you will be living in someone else’s home. If you and the landlord fall out, you will have no choice but to find alternative accommodation. The landlord does not need to obtain a court order to evict you.

Student Homes

The University of London rents a limited number of properties from private landlords and rents these to students. King's students are able to rent from their list of properties that are available to any Univeristy of London Students.

You will require a guarantor but they do not need to be UK based.

The list of available properties can be found here.  

plainbannernarrowThis page is for information purposes only. King's College London accepts no liability or responsibility for any of the external/3rd party websites or accommodation providers mentioned or linked to on this web-page.

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