Thursday, 1 September 2016

Tips For Moving Into Your Uni House | Uni Series


Seen as I have been through uni already I thought it would be good to different a few different advice posts. I know if I had been able to know some of this stuff before and while I was at uni it would have been really useful, so hopefully this series should help you out. From my experience living in halls for a year then renting two private houses, there are certain things I've learnt that can make your life a bit easier.

Take photos and report any faults immediately

If there is any damage when you move in you need to report this to your landlord so that there are aware it was already there when you moved in. This should ensure it gets repaired if needed and that you won't end up getting charged when you move out for something you didn't do. Even if its small things such as marks on the wall or some furniture that is chipped, don't ignore it as you don't know how picky your landlord will be. The best thing to do is to make a list of all the issues and take photos so you can send them over just after you move in so they can't try and argue it was you later down the line. This goes for any problems you develop through the tenancy or any accidental damage you cause, it's better to report it as it happens to make sure it gets sorted and they might be a little more lenient rather than finding a few different issues at the end.

Don't take everything you own

I was definitely guilty of this in my first year as I thought I needed all the items I owned. I even had a box of spare cables and chargers for things like I probably didn't even have with me, so it sat there collecting dust all year. When you are packing, think about what you actually use. If you haven't used something in months, you can be pretty safe leaving it at home. As much as you want to take things that you make you feel comfortable, remember that you may well have a smaller room than the one at home so you don't want to be cramped up.

You don't need to break the bank for home/household items

When you move into your uni house, there probably won't be much in the way of luxuries. You'll probably be blessed with a bed and some furniture so you may need to pick a few things up. You may try to avoid buying certain things for the house as you think you'll only need them for a year or two, but don't let this leave you trying to iron your clothes with a hot pan. I know buying things like an ironing board won't be the top of your shopping list, but you can get them a lot cheaper than you think. There are plenty of shops where you can pick things up such as: Wilko's, IKEA, B&M, Home Bargains, Pound stores, Supermarkets and Primark (particularly cheap for bedding items). You can often get other things such as toiletries and dry food cheaper in some of these places so if you shop around a little it will save you a few quid here and there.

Record meter readings as soon as you move in

This will save you a lot of hassle when sorting out bills. I had issues with an energy supplier to do with grossly overcharging me as they were using estimated start readings that you way out. Had I not recorded the readings as soon as I moved in, it would have made my life a lot harder. Taking photos of the meter is always a good idea and they can be used to send to your supplier so they have the correct info from the start. Some advice for throughout the year, if you think you have been incorrectly billed, don't just accept it. Contact them as soon as it happens and query it as it may have been a mistake that would end up costing you more money.

Contact suppliers earlier rather than later

If you speak to them as soon as you move in, it means you will get things set up quickly such as getting your broadband installed. As there is a high turnover of who lives in student properties, supplies don't always have up to date information about who is responsible for paying the bills. Letting them know you have just moved in and are now responsible should make sure you don't end up getting billed for the previous tenants. You may be able to set up a better payment plan such as paying by direct debit which could end up working out slightly cheaper. Advice for when you move out - contact them prior to leaving to clear up any remaining bills: pay off any remaining balance or claim it back if you have left part way through a billing period etc.

Check for any mould issues

This is your landlords responsibility to sort any issues relating to this as it could affect your health. Report this if it becomes a problem, because it will most likely get worse if it's left untreated. Be aware that drying your clothes indoors without proper ventilation can affect this too, so make sure you do your part to help prevent it. In winter, don't let your house get too cold, but do remember to keep fresh air coming through so there isn't a build up of moisture.


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