Today’s post is a little different. As I have done a few posts on living away from university and living in student accommodation, I thought it would be interesting to get the views from other people. So I decided to interview my two housemates and ask them questions about what it is like living in student accommodation and the struggles they may have faced.
So meet my housemates, Amy & Angelica (from left to right). We all met during the first year of university and have been living together ever since. Over to them now!
Introduce yourself to the people (name/age/degree):
Amy: Amy Louise Mungin, 22, Health Studies
Angelica: Angelica Torres, 21, Health Studies
What made you decide to live in student accommodation?
Amy: I had never been to Stafford before and it was my first year at university; therefore it was more convenient for me to live in student halls to make it easier for me to leave home, to adapt to living in a new area and to meet new people.
Angelica: For the experience and to meet new people.
What are the pros and cons of living in a student house?
Pros: You get the opportunity to live with your friends, viewing student houses is a fun, and if you live with someone who takes the same course as you then they may be able to help you with your assignments if you are stuck.
Cons: Even though you can live with your friends, if there is an empty bedroom then your landlord/lady can allow another tenant to live with you and you may not get along with them. You have to figure out who is going to have bills under their name and then you have to set up a payment schedule with the company which can be stressful. Also, you may have issues with your landlord/lady and there maybe issues with the house and it could be your responsibility to fix them.
Pros: You can live in a place with your friends, become closer to your housemates and have more space.
Cons: It can be pricey and sometimes you don’t find your preferred student house straight away.
How do you think it’s best to resolve issues with your housemates?
Amy: By communicating with each other. If the issues don’t get resolved straight away then try to get along with them because you all have to live together. I would also suggest talking to the students union about the issues. Someone who is not involved and does not know any of you maybe able to advise you on what to do.
Angelica: Just talk to them and listen to each other.
What is it like living with your friends (in a student house) from living with strangers (in halls)?
Amy: It’s much easier because you can study and spend time together straight way, for example, shopping or watching movies. Whereas, living with strangers is quite a daunting thing because you don’t know one another. There is the thought of not being able to get along or having anything to talk about to break the ice and get to know them better. However, I do think living in student halls can benefit first year students by giving them the opportunity to make new friends which can help you to decide who you would like to live in a student house with.
Angelica: So much better because you are with people you trust and get along with.
Are you glad you moved away from home?
Amy: Yes, this allowed my to become more independent, meet new people and improve my confidence.
Do you ever get homesick? If so, how do you cope with it?
Amy: I did get homesick quite a lot during first year but not as much anymore, it gets easier. I cope with it by listening to music, going for a run, spending time with my housemates, talking to my family on a regular basis and going home to see them.
Angelica: Sometimes. I cope with it by talking to friends and family as much as possible while living away.
Do you have any tips for students who are looking for student accommodation?
Amy: Ask your new housemates about their family (do they have any siblings), what course are they doing, what do they like to do in their spare time? (These are tips my Gran gave to me when I was starting my first year)! This will encourage them to ask you these questions. Also, view the house in person, don’t just look online. Try and meet your landlord/lady in person before moving into the house and if they want to move a new tenant in try and meet up with them before they move in. This way you can get to know them. Make an appointment with the students union so that they can look at the contract for the house; they will be able to tell you if there are any issues with it.
Angelica: Make sure you get advice from your parents because they know best, and do lots of research.
I hope you enjoyed hearing from my fellow housemates and a big thank you to them for agreeing to do this! University is such a great opportunity to meet and become friends with people you wouldn’t have otherwise have met, so enjoy it and take each opportunity as it comes!