News & advice on finding accommodation for 20/21

10/08/2020

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We are delighted to announce that our new Property Platform is now live to students.

Our new platform and app enables you to quickly and seamlessly book your accommodation, whether you’re looking for a room in private halls, a studio flat or a houseshare; and it will include a host of exciting features to give you greater confidence and security in the process.

You will be able to book accommodation from registered and verified providers without the need to be in London or even to undertake a viewing, if circumstances don’t permit this.

You may now have heard some news from your college about the plans for reopening. We know that some Universities are planning to reopen in January, while others are looking at September or October start dates, initially delivering tuition through a combination of socially-distanced, in-person teaching; and remote learning. When you do come to book accommodation, you must be confident that you will be able to commit to the terms of your contract as they are legally binding agreements, and there is often no way to cancel them once they have been agreed.

If you need information on COVID and housing, please visit our COVID-19 FAQ Page. You can also use our Housing Guide to find out more about renting a property in London. 

In the meantime, here are some other options and advice:

Where To Look

There’s lots of options online for finding accommodation in London. As well as our new Property Platform, you can use our Flatmate Finder Facebook group to buddy up with our students to find a place together. You can also check out our Student Homes properties if you’d like University-managed house and flat shares, or click here to find out about student halls.

If you’re looking for private accommodation, there is a list of other websites you can use to find houses, flats, or rooms available to rent on our Other Private Accommodation websites page

Please be careful when responding to adverts for accommodation online. There are unfortunately people who target students in housing scams and it can be very difficult to get money back from scammers. Never send money to someone before you have viewed a property, and don’t use money transfer services like Western Union or Moneygram. 

Fees

Agents and landlords cannot charge fees in relation to new tenancies. If an agent or landlord tries to charge you a fee, they are probably breaking the law. For more info, see our Tenant Fees Act page

Letting Agents

If you use a letting agent when you’re looking for accommodation, make sure they’re a member of a redress scheme. Redress schemes are independent and can resolve disputes between letting agents and tenants. You can find out if they’re a member by searching on the Property Ombudsman and Property Redress Scheme websites. If an agent is not a member of one, they’re breaking the law, and we would strongly recommend you look elsewhere for accommodation. If something an agent is doing doesn’t seem right, you can always call us for advice. 

Contract Checking

We offer a Contract Checking Service – we’d recommend you get your contract looked at by an advisor before you sign it, so you can be sure there’s no problems with it. If you don’t have time for an appointment, you can also use our Contract Checking Guide.

Call Us!

If you’re still feeling lost, one of our team would be happy to speak to you about finding accommodation. You can give our office a ring on 020 7862 8880 or drop us an email on housing@london.ac.uk