Moving into a student home, especially if you're also heading to a new city or town for your postgraduate studies, can mean that you're going to be missing out on some home comforts.
Here are a few ideas to turn your postgraduate student house into a home on a budget.
Bring something from home
Start by bringing a few small items to remind you of your home and/or your friends and family that will not see you often during your postgraduate course. It doesn't need to be big, but a little bit to remind you of why you are studying hard in the first place might be the motivation boost you need when you're feeling low or homesick.
Paint doesn't cost much and people or paint retailers often sell tins of excess paint at discounted prices. Check with your landlord about what is and isn't allowed before you start, but you might find that they don't mind as long as you return the walls to white before you leave. If you find you cannot decorate, then giving your accommodation a good clean and changing the curtains/blinds and lampshades can make a big difference and make your space look better.
Budget for a few purchases
If you're moving to a new country, city or town, then you should set aside some of your budget for settling in, and some of this should be spent on lamps, cushions and maybe a cosy rug or two. Being able to adjust the lighting in your room from day to night or getting a nice houseplant will make it easier to relax when you close the books for the day.
Second hand furniture
Sometimes you might find that your accommodation is lacking an extra chair or the desk isn't quite what you need and your Students’ Union will have lots of advice on how to sort this out. Second hand furniture is a great way to pick up a bargain, and you find that lots of charity shops and second hand shops will deliver for a small fee.
The right accommodation
If you don't want to spend time decorating or searching for extra furniture, then start by renting from an accommodation supplier who has everything in place. Student accommodation companies, such as our accommodation partner Fresh, are prepared for postgraduate students to move right in with their apartments, rooms and common areas all decorated in a fresh modern style. They also have perfect study places with all the lighting you need and you can pre-order the extra pieces online with them for delivery on your move-in date. Then all you need to do is bring a few small touches from home and you should be able to settle in easily.
Make friends with your housemates & neighbours
The best way to make your new student house feel like home is to get to know the people you are living with and close to. If you're in a houseshare get to know your fellow housemates and if you’re in an apartment on your own, then get to know your neighbours. University halls of residence and accommodation providers like Fresh will hold special ‘getting to know you’ events which is a great way to find out who you are living nearby and to make new friends. Fresh also continues to organise social events throughout the year.
This table provides some idea of how much you can expect to pay for self-catering university accommodation costs around the UK.
Sources: 1 2 3 4 5
Fresh is one of many potential private accommodation options for international postgraduate students. Other private student accommodation options are available and Postgrad.com advises you to research all your options thoroughly before making such a commitment. Postgrad Solutions accepts no responsibility for your choice of student accommodation and does not endorse or support Fresh. Fresh Student Living Ltd is registered in England and Wales under company number 07268209. The VAT number is 142920528.
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