Finding privately rented accommodation
With such a variety of rented places on offer in Hull, knowing where to start can be tough. Read our five steps to finding your property, and you'll be ready to tackle the rentals market head-on.
1. Figure out a budget. If you're planning to rent privately, you'll also need to budget for bills, meals and other daily living expenses. You should do this before you look at any properties.
2. Decide who you want to live with. The great thing about private renting is that you get to decide who you want to live with, rather than being placed into halls with a selection of people and hoping you get along. Think carefully about whether you'd prefer to live with some different friends or stick with the same people you're already living with. Are you really getting along? Your friend's annoying habits that you can deal with right now might get on your nerves when they're a daily occurrence. Need to find someone to live with? Got to StuRents.com and search for potential housemates.
3. Decide where you want to live. The different areas of Hull each have their own communities and character. Deciding where you want to live – or perhaps more importantly, where you don't want to live – is essential in narrowing down your search.
4. Find properties to view. Before you sign up to a property, you should inspect your potential new home as closely as possible. Keep in mind that a whole year's rent is a big chunk of your funds, and you'll be spending loads of time there. Choose wisely for a hassle-free year.
If you have agreed anything verbally with your landlord – whether it's additional furniture, repairs or dates to pay rent – make sure you get these in writing and signed by the landlord.
5. Sign on the dotted line. Found the place for you? Make sure you read our information on contracts and agreements first, as your tenancy agreement is a legally binding document. It's important to spend time reading and understanding it before you sign.
Many landlords will ask for guarantors. If your parent signs a guarantor form, they become liable for your financial responsibilities under the terms of the contract. That means they have to pay your rent if you haven’t paid it.
Your landlord will charge a refundable deposit as security against the tenancy. This is separate from your rent payments. Your deposit is refunded at the end of your tenancy after you move out, return the keys and the landlord checks the property. A landlord may make deductions from a deposit to cover certain costs.
Under the law in England and Wales, your landlord MUST put your deposit into a Tenancy Deposit Scheme within 30 days of getting it.
Moving in and getting settled
Yay, you've found somewhere to live! Here are our top tips for moving into and living in your new place.
Once you’ve found a house, flat or room, you'll need to sign a contract for it. This document will be legally binding for both you and your landlord, so it's important that you read it carefully and understand it before you sign.
Remember that – as well as rent – you may be responsible for charges such as heating, electricity, water and other bills. Your landlord should have details of the water, electricity and gas suppliers that previous tenants used, and you'll have to contact these companies directly to set up payment methods for your bills throughout the year.
The majority of students are exempt from paying Council Tax, but there are a few exceptions.
It's really important that you take out insurance to cover your possessions. Sadly, student accommodation can often be a target for burglars.
If the property needs any repairs, you must always inform the landlord.
If you bring a television with you into privately rented accommodation, you must have a current personal TV Licence. The licence that you use in your family home is not valid. For more information see the TV Licensing website.