You might be about to move into halls for the first time, or move into a second year residence or house with your friends, but whatever your situation, getting your room right matters. We're talking about your study space, sleeping area, recovery zone and general safe haven, after all. Now, the most important things in life aren't things, of course, but a few key items can definitely help...
Working it out
Many student halls now come with oversized beds as that's where people are doing their studying and reading. Which is all very nice and relaxed, but when you need to get down to hammering out that essay or revising - or if you need somewhere to put all your stuff so you can actually sleep on the bed – you'll need a decent workspace.
The magic ingredients might include a good desk, plus a chair that looks after your back and a decent lamp. Some of this might already be provided, but you can also check out places like Argos for supplies.
You might also want to consider a few allies to support your workspace. A printer can ease the stress of queueing for campus facilities, for example, while a clock radio will stop you relying on your phone – and it won't wake you up at 4am with drunken messages from your friends.
Get some shut-eye
It may seem hard to imagine during the giddiness of Fresher's Week, but at some point you're going to want to sleep. Some halls provide bedding, covers and so on, but you're at their mercy when it comes to colours and levels of cosiness (yes, that's a thing), so why not pick your own. Don't underestimate the power of a well-chosen duvet and cover – keep 'em washed, everyone – to provide the comfort you need when you're ill, tired or even homesick, either.
Also, a word about shared student bathrooms: yikes. Even in the nicest halls things can get a bit grim in there, so take flip flops to protect your feet – you'll thank us the first time you have to wade through water or other unfortunate spillages - and your own fluffy towels to take the edge off the experience.
Chances are your room won't be huge, so it's sensible to invest in some space-saving bits and pieces. Things like storage boxes and clothing rails keep clutter down and don't take up much room, leaving plenty of space for your juggling practice (or ballroom dancing, extreme mime or whatever activity you find yourself taking up).
You might also want to think about some other aids to relaxation, be it a mini fridge to keep your milk / beer / crème eggs safe, a roomy beanbag or some quality headphones to help you get lost in the music without disturbing your flatmates. Shops like Argos
can offer lots of inspiration and student deals.
All work and no play...
….will make your student experience very dull indeed. So make sure you have the necessary technology. Your halls will probably be equipped with wi-fi, but if not – or if you're moving into private accommodation and need to provide your own – make sure you have a fast, reliable wi-fi router. You'll need it for study, of course, but also for emergency Netflix sessions and Spotify soundtracks.
On top of that, you'll probably want a DVD player and TV. There are some space-saving options available that will fit into even the snuggest of student rooms. If you're taking your games console to hook up to the TV, consider some extra controllers and headsets, too – it's a good way of bonding with your new housemates and spending a cheap evening in.
Room with a you
Any of these things can make your stay in student accommodation much more pleasant, but try not to go mad buying loads of fancy gadgets, especially for the kitchen. Believe us, the contents of that ice cream maker you use once then don't clean will haunt your dreams.
Don't forget the personal touch: take pics of your friends and family (and dog) that you can put on your wall, plus a couple of home comforts, whether that's a teddy, dressing gown, blanket, guitar... Your room will feel more like home if it's got a bit of your personality in it.
Finally, check out our forums and accommodation pages for tips and advice before you start packing. Then you'll be ready to make the most of your student experience, and maybe even sleep once in a while. Enjoy!