Accomodation Advice for a Returning Uni of Notts Student Watch

Scribbled
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Hello there,

I need some advice on what to do for accommodation 2014-2015 after coming back from a sandwich year. Since I am technically starting a new course I have no guarantees of getting a house mate to rent a house with (not that that's even possible as I'm out the country and wouldn't be able to sign the contract). So that leaves me with University Catered Halls or Private Self-Catered halls.

I'll give you a bit of background. Being an Architecture student my course is super stressful and as of yet I haven't really joined any societies I.E. had a 'real' university experience hence why Uni Catered Halls is appealing. It's close to everything to do with uni including the Architecture school and I don't worry about bills, cooking or food shops leaving me more time to actually socialise and have fun. It's also a hell of a lot cheaper than self-catering when taking into account the cost of food. The rent on self-catering alone is more expensive than uni halls. If I'm in private self-catered (which is at least 20mins walk away from town or campus) I am likely to not go to societies out of a mixture of laziness and stress when deadlines draw near then I think to myself "well I've missed the vast majority of the meetings. I feel like a lemon going now because I don't know anyone." and then don't go back.

Disadvantage is, catered halls are really restrictive. Too ill to get your meal? Tough! Want your fella to eat too while he's visiting you? Fat chance! If don't like the meal then you're going hungry and if you're busy during meal times and can't get back to your halls? Better find a take-away stat! It doesn't help that 99.99% of students in Uni halls are firsties. It's also noisy. When I lived there in 1st year I was lucky as I was away from the main blocks and hence kinda forgotten about so it was always quite and my blockmates rarely had music playing until 03:00 like elsewhere.

I have fond memories of Uni halls but for some reason I am a little reserved about them. Any advice on what I should do?

Thanks Scribbled
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DarkWhite
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(Original post by Scribbled)
Hello there,

I need some advice on what to do for accommodation 2014-2015 after coming back from a sandwich year. Since I am technically starting a new course I have no guarantees of getting a house mate to rent a house with (not that that's even possible as I'm out the country and wouldn't be able to sign the contract). So that leaves me with University Catered Halls or Private Self-Catered halls.

I'll give you a bit of background. Being an Architecture student my course is super stressful and as of yet I haven't really joined any societies I.E. had a 'real' university experience hence why Uni Catered Halls is appealing. It's close to everything to do with uni including the Architecture school and I don't worry about bills, cooking or food shops leaving me more time to actually socialise and have fun. It's also a hell of a lot cheaper than self-catering when taking into account the cost of food. The rent on self-catering alone is more expensive than uni halls. If I'm in private self-catered (which is at least 20mins walk away from town or campus) I am likely to not go to societies out of a mixture of laziness and stress when deadlines draw near then I think to myself "well I've missed the vast majority of the meetings. I feel like a lemon going now because I don't know anyone." and then don't go back.

Disadvantage is, catered halls are really restrictive. Too ill to get your meal? Tough! Want your fella to eat too while he's visiting you? Fat chance! If don't like the meal then you're going hungry and if you're busy during meal times and can't get back to your halls? Better find a take-away stat! It doesn't help that 99.99% of students in Uni halls are firsties. It's also noisy. When I lived there in 1st year I was lucky as I was away from the main blocks and hence kinda forgotten about so it was always quite and my blockmates rarely had music playing until 03:00 like elsewhere.

I have fond memories of Uni halls but for some reason I am a little reserved about them. Any advice on what I should do?

Thanks Scribbled
I mean, you can find housemates to live with on the Unipol student-to-student noticeboards for example. When one of our housemates dropped out of his course last minute this is how we found a last-minute replacement and plenty of students are on there coming back from a year out etc.

That said, I did enjoy being in catered halls in first year and yeah it did leave a lot of time for societies, socialising and so on.

If you're ill, they'll normally let someone else collect some food for you. Similarly, you can often pay for a main meal if you have somebody round, but that might've changed since I was in halls. There's normally 3 options for a main meal, so I think you'd have to be pretty picky to not like the food on a regular basis.

It will be noisy, as will any set of halls, even postgrad-only halls are, so that is the toss-up between a house and halls imo.

You could look for a studio flat or a one-bed place if you quite like your own company; I know a fair few students doing that because they want the peace and quiet and not to find their housemates weren't exactly how they thought they would be.

Ultimately, it's really your call. If you don't mind the noise some nights then halls are great, quick, and easy. You could find housemates to live with, meet them beforehand, and do some househunting, or you could get your own place for a bit; the downside being the cost, but the upsides being complete control and flexibility
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Scribbled
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(Original post by DarkWhite)
If you're ill, they'll normally let someone else collect some food for you. Similarly, you can often pay for a main meal if you have somebody round, but that might've changed since I was in halls. There's normally 3 options for a main meal, so I think you'd have to be pretty picky to not like the food on a regular basis.
Well in 2010, I was ill and sent my bf with my card to get some. Basically they said he wasn't allowed (which if you think about it makes sense because it stops someone stealling someone's card and using their food). They told him I had to inform my hall office and get a signed slip so he could get food for me but that was impossible because my hall office was closed at lunchtime and I don't mean just with someone sitting inside that barks "we're closed" at you when you walk in. I mean really closed! They all skarpered and locked the door meaning the two of us had to stare the one lunch. Also when I was in halls you just plain weren't allowed to bring anyone for dinner. Even if you were in another catered halls if I was in halls after you I'm going to start moaning because that was really silly all they needed to do was be informed 24-48hrs in advance because they got food deliveries every day! Grrrr!

Thanks for the advice though. I did briefly think about Unipol but I know my parents would really freak out about me essentially going to live with strangers. They were bad enough when I moved out of halls with people I knew and trusted. At one point, my dad was basically freaking out because he thought that one of them would be stupid enough to invite half of Lenton over for a party and one of the friends would start a fire which would burn down half the street and he would have to pay for it. (Yep my dad is crazy) but I am a bit nervous of living with complete strangers purely because the people I knew turned out to be bad enough housemates.... :P Nice to know some people are meeting up before hand though that's encouraging
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