Preparing for student halls
When moving away from home to attend university, accommodation is just one of the many things you will need to think about. Where you will be living and who you will be living with will contribute to your university experience. For some, the prospect of leaving home is really exciting but for others the thought of leaving home into a shared student accommodation can be daunting.
To help put you at ease, here are a few frequently asked questions and things you may need to consider before moving in shared accommodation.
What are student halls?
Student halls are commonly large blocks of flats housing up to hundreds of students. Our new Station Approach accommodation in Hereford houses up to 140 students. They usually have a corridor with separate bedrooms leading alongside it with a shared kitchen, bathroom and communal living area at the end of the corridor on each floor. However, en suite bathrooms are becoming more popular and there are options to have a room with an en suite in newly built accommodations.
Student halls are made with students in mind. They are commonly located near to campus. The Station Approach accommodation is a 5 to 10 minute walk from both the College Road and Folly Lane campus, so you don’t need to wake up super early to get to your 9am lectures on time.
One of the great things about student halls is that all bills included in weekly costs which means that you will not have to worry about managing all the bills by yourself. You also have support from the university if anything if you are feeling unsure about anything and need some guidance. The Station Approach student halls have a team on site to manage maintenance and reception, so there is always someone you can go to if you need any help or support.
What is the cost?
Student accommodation understand that typically students don’t have very large incomes so the prices are fixed at an affordable and reasonable rate. The amount provided by student loans is enough to cover your rent for the academic term, which should leave you with some money left over food, course materials and disposal income for socialising!
There will be variables in cost depending on which type of room you go for, en suites and larger rooms are commonly more expensive. For more information about the prices of Station Approach student accommodation click here.
What should you bring with you?
Many students moving into halls will not have been away from home for more than a couple of weeks, let alone a few months. It can be tricky to know what you may need to take with you. For a helpful list of things you will need to consider taking, check out handy halls checklist. Remember that student halls are made for students so make sure to check with the accommodation manager what they have already provided. Most student accommodation is fitted with the basic utilities such as microwaves, kettles and irons.
Getting to know your housemates
It is commonly said that friends made at university often become friends for life. This is a great opportunity for you to meet lots of different kinds of people and learn more about yourself. The thought of living with up 100 strangers can be daunting but try to remember that everyone is in the same position as you and the ice will quickly break after Freshers’ week. Try and speak to as many people as possible and include people in shared activities as you will be potentially spending the next 3 years with them! Don’t worry if at first you don’t instantly ‘click’ with people, it will not take long before you find your people. Have a look at our list of housemates and how to get to know them guide.
It makes sense that students will want to make their rooms as cozy and homely as possible. Your room is your private space to relax and take a break if you need it. Check with your accommodation manager about their decorating policy before you start your redecorating! Also keep in mind that future students will be living in your room so take care not to leave any long lasting damage. There are lots of simple things you can do to make your space cozy – invest in some nice lighting, nurture a houseplant, put up some posters and bring something that reminds you of home, it could be a blanket, a rug or knick-knacks of some kind.
Guests to stay
Every accommodation has a different policy on people coming to stay. It is usually okay for guests to come and stay for a couple of days, just remember to run it by your accommodation manager first.
We would all love to be able to bring our furry friends along with us to university and for some the new found freedom may encourage them to treat themselves to a new critter to join in the fun. However not everyone likes pets and some may be allergic, to make sure everyone is comfortable there is usually a strict no pet policy in shared accommodation. However, exceptions can be made for support animals and guide dogs. If in doubt check with your accommodation manager.
Designed with creatives in mind
The Station Approach student accommodation is made with creative people in mind. We can appreciate that most creatives don’t like limiting their creativity to a set space. This is why individual bedrooms include wall-boards for students to personalise with artworks and things that inspire them.
The building also provides lots of opportunities for students to share work and ideas, there is a spacious social space on the ground floor designed for exhibitions and performances as well as a place to hang out and socialise.
Hereford has a flourishing and lively creative community in which there will be many opportunities for you to get involved in and meet other like minded people. The Station Approach team will facilitate a year-round event and social programme in collaboration with students to support the creative community.
Some quick tips for students staying in accommodation
- Save money by all cooking together
- Label everything to avoid mix ups
- Don’t leave valuables lying around
- If you are feeling shy, leave your door open for someone to say hi!
- Listen to your body during Freshers week, drink lots of water and take a nap if you need it
- Put some money aside as soon as you receive your student loan so you know you have a buffer fund
- Invest in some ear plugs as Saturday nights might get noisy!
- Avoid romantic relationships with your house mates, if it doesn’t work out things could get awkward and uncomfortable
- Get yourself a houseplant, it is great for your wellbeing
Moving away from home, disruptions in routine and having to share a kitchen may have a knock on effect on your eating habits. Try not to have too many takeaways and eat on the go, make sure to make some time for self care and treat yourself to a home cooked meal. You can share this experience with your housemates or get a group together to enjoy a freshly made meal made with love. We have put together some quick, easy and healthy student recipes that won’t cost you a fortune to make.