Congratulations! You’ve been accepted onto your Masters degree course! While you may currently be celebrating, there are many factors to consider before you begin your postgraduate study. Which optional modules to take in addition to the compulsory ones. Dissertation planning. And of course, finding a place to live.
In this article, we’ll be looking at the accommodation options available to Masters students in the UK and discuss some of the key things to consider before moving in.
Accommodation options for Masters students
A number of universities provide postgraduate accommodation, with halls of residence specially designed for Masters students.
While some universities offer this kind of accommodation on a first-come, first-serve basis (owing to high demand or limited numbers because the majority of rooms are reserved for international students), more are providing designated living quarters for postgraduates. These can include self-catered rooms, self-catered ensuites (with kitchens and shower rooms) and studio apartments.
Living at home
Living at home can be a good way to save money—especially if you live near your university. On top of tuition fees, paying rent and bills is a challenge for some and living at home may just be the only option. This is increasingly available to postgraduate students now that more university courses are being delivered partly or wholly online.
House or flat share
Sharing accommodation with other people is a popular way of spreading the cost of living. It’s also a good option for those who want a bit of a social life, especially when you live with other Master’s students with the same priorities as you. Your fellow residents could be friends from your undergraduate degree, former halls flatmates or friends from outside of university altogether. The other choice is to seek out a vacancy in an existing flat or house share.
Purpose-built student accommodation
There is a wide range of private accommodation available to postgraduate students in purpose-built apartment and studio complexes. These range from single rooms with joint facilities, to shared flats and self-contained studios.
While these may be a more expensive option at first glance, it’s worth noting that more universities are hiking up the prices for their postgraduate halls of residence. A further advantage is that the private company will take care of the everyday details, so you don’t have to worry about separate bills for utilities and broadband, especially as the cost of living is rising.
Choosing where to live during your Masters
Selecting the right kind of accommodation comes down to a number of factors. Every postgraduate student will have different requirements, and these will affect their final accommodation decision.
One of the most important factors is location. Depending on your preference, you may want the hustle and bustle of a city centre or the peace and quiet of the suburbs. It’s also worth checking out the reputation of the area you’d like to move to, as you’ll want to be sure it’s safe and welcoming of students.
There is also convenience and transport links to think about. How close is the accommodation to campus? How long would the commute take? Would you need more than one form of transport to get there? If you’ll be working a part-time job alongside your studies, will location cause issues for arriving on time?
These considerations are less significant for city centre builds that are within walking distance of universities, such as our Redvers Tower accommodation in Sheffield. When you book a room at our Ernest Place accommodation in Durham, however, we will offer you a free bus pass if you are studying at Durham University.
Size and facilities
The size of the living space and available facilities should be kept in mind when booking accommodation. As a postgraduate student, you will probably want a desk space and plenty of room for storing study materials like research for your dissertation. You may also want a private bathroom and kitchen so you can fully relax in your own personal space. Mansion Student offer a number of studios and ensuite apartments, such as our Classic, Loft, Premium and Prestige rooms at Mansion Place in Nottingham.
Choosing who to live with during your Masters
Who you live with during your studies (if you want to live with anyone at all) is another key factor in your accommodation plans. You might be open to the idea of living with strangers, but not so keen on sharing your space with first-year undergraduates. You might prefer the privacy of a single-occupancy apartment but appreciate the shared amenities on offer in purpose-built student accommodation, such as a cinema room and outdoor area like what we offer at Mansion Tyne in Newcastle.
There are many ways to find the right kind of accommodation for you. As well as adverts in the papers and online, there are also social media outlets such as Facebook or Twitter, online university forums, and designated websites such as Spare Room or Room Buddies. Universities may also help you find a place to share with others.
Flat sharing may distribute the living costs a little but bear in mind council tax exemptions. Full-time students do not have to pay council tax, but your household will not be exempt if there are working professionals/non-students living at the property. For more details, it’s worth checking out the government’s guidance on council tax for students.
Renting privately with Mansion Student
Mansion Student are specialists in purpose-built student accommodation. Whether you’re looking for an ensuite room, self-contained studio, one-bedroom or shared apartment, we can help you find the best space to live throughout your Masters degree. All of our properties are within easy distance of university lecture halls and libraries, as well as local shops, bars and restaurants.
Mansion Student’s friendly hospitality and lettings teams are on hand to discuss your specific needs. The dedicated staff are there to listen and to accommodate every individual requirement. No booking fees are required, and there is the added bonus of £0 deposit.