Five house hunting tips for students

Photograph of two UCEN Manchester students during a dress rehearsal for a show from The Arden School of Theatre.

Our accredited accommodation partner, Manchester Student Homes (MSH), has pulled together a list of handy tips for students who are looking for somewhere to live during the 2024/25 academic year, which we’ve summarised for you.

Students in Manchester continuing with their studies in September typically start looking for their accommodation for the next academic year around November and December.

If this applies to you, there are several factors that you should take into account before making decisions on where and who to live with, and MSH can help you find University Approved Accommodation that has been checked and meets their Code of Standards.  They also carry out contract checks and provide free information, advice and guidance on housing for UCEN Manchester students.

1. Take your time

It is important to take your time and ensure that you have carried out research on the type of property, landlord/letting agent, rental price, contract and your soon to be housemates.  Try and look at as many properties as possible to ensure that you have a clear idea on the type of properties that are available and suitable for you.

2. Consider who you will be living with

Carefully consider and select who you think that you can live with for extended periods of time.  It is best to discuss and come to an agreement on the things that can cause housing issues, such as house rules, a cleaning rota and how the bills will be split.

3. Viewing and reviewing properties

Landlords/letting agents should ensure they are supporting student tenants by carrying out viewings appropriately.  MSH recommend that you view the property with your potential housemates to ensure that everyone is happy.

It may be useful to request that the viewings are carried out via video call with a resident tenant of the property if all your housemates can’t make the appointment.  This could provide the additional benefit of being able to ask questions of the current tenant who will most likely give you an honest report on the property and the type of support the landlord/letting agent provides.

4. Get your contract checked

Your tenancy agreement is a legally binding document that covers a fixed period of time.  Therefore, after signing a tenancy agreement they can be extremely difficult to cancel or get released from.

MSH provides a contract checking service free of charge to UCEN Manchester students.  This will support you with any queries and help you to identify any abnormalities that you should be aware of.

5. Is your deposit in a protection scheme?

Deposits are there to cover non-payment of rent and any damage to the property you’re renting.  Landlords are required by law to protect a tenant’s deposit in a Government registered scheme.

With this in mind, you should receive a letter confirming the details of where your deposit is protected and how to release the funds at the end of your tenancy.

Please note, the guidance MSH has provided contains advice that is subject to Government guidelines as well as information that shows MSH’ commitment to their tenants, prospective tenants and the local community.

If you have any housing queries, please email MSH via or call on 0161 275 7680.