Accommodation: Where to look
Finding accommodation is not always easy, and even when you have a place to call your own you could face problems unless you know something about your rights and responsibilities as a tenant. We’ve put together some information to get you started which is also available online in leaflet form here. Updated 2013
If you find you need more help, or if you just want to chat things through before you make a decision then please contact The Advice Centre.
The Advice Centre
John McIntyre Building
0141 330 5360
Pad (private accommodation database)
A centralised database of private sector accommodation available for rent to students attending all five institutions in Glasgow. To access go to: http://www.glasgowpad.org
The John McIntyre Building (home of the SRC) and both the unions have notice-boards filled with adverts for rooms in student flats.
The SRC’s electronic version of the noticeboards. Click here
The Herald (Wednesday), Evening Times (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday) and the Sunday Herald all carry adverts for lettings.
Renting through a reputable Letting Agent can sometimes save a lot of headaches – everything should be licensed and any problems are often dealt with efficiently. Expect to pay more, though. Don’t part with any cash until you’ve found somewhere you’re happy with.
Word of mouth
People are always looking for new flats and leaving old ones behind. If you hear someone talking about moving on, find out what’s happening with their old flat. You may find you can secure a flat before it’s even been advertised.
These websites are a good resource for flathunting, but remember that these are essentially adverts, so be wary if something looks too good to be true. When you are searching for accommodation online, look out for when the website was last updated to make sure you’re not viewing a property that’s no longer for rent, or worse, a scam. The usual basic rules apply; never give out your personal details online.
What area should I stay in?
There are a lot of different areas to live in around the University. When looking for a flat, think about how close to campus you need to be. Do you want to wake up next to your lecture theatre or would you mind living a bit further out? If it’s important for you to live near your main campus, then there are lots of accommodation options around, but there is more competition for these flats.
If you’d like some advice from a student perspective, it’s worth reading the section starting on page 69 of the SRC Guide as there are pros and cons with all of the different options surrounding the University.
Bear in mind that Glasgow is a city, so whichever area you decide to move to will have good and bad sides. It’s probably more useful to be looking out for a well-lit street that is near public transport, then one with a ‘good’ postcode.
Who should I move in with?
Living with your friends can be great fun, but they’re not always perfect flatmates. It’s important to remember that if you do sign a lease together, this is a binding contract.
There are a couple of things that you should think about when you are looking for potential flatmates, whether you’ve met them before or not.
- Will your potential flatmate be someone who is guaranteed to pay rent and bills on time?
- Does s/he have similar standards of cleanliness and tidiness in a flat as you do?
- Will s/he put up with your bad habits and can you put up with (or ignore) theirs?
If you can, try to get to know your new flatmates before you move in, to see if you can live with each other.
Things can go wrong, however. If you do decide you want to move out of your flat early, you will have to negotiate this with your landlord or you could end up being liable to repay the remaining months’ rent. Call into the Advice Centre if you’d like more help and advice on this issue.
Tips and Resources
Flathunting – Death Trap or Dead Good?
The SRC has produced an information leaflet to help you with the essentials of flathunting – pick a copy from the Advice Centre or read it online. Updated 2013
Download our checklist to take to viewings with you.
Your landlord should provide an inventory of what is provided in the flat and the condition of furniture, carpets etc. If your landlord doesn’t do this, then do your own inventory within a week of moving in, and get him/her to sign it.
***NEW!*** Shelter Scotland have produced an iPhone app (other platforms to follow) called Housemate to make the process of producing an inventory much easier.
Pastures New is a website with some realistic advice about student accommodation options.
Avoid getting scammed
Unscrupulous individuals can try and scam money from students by posing as landlords. Be on the look out if the advertised rent seems very low, the landlord lives out with the UK, if you’ve been asked to send money for a deposit or proof of funds via a money transfer service, or been advised that you can’t see inside the property before renting it. These can all indicate scams. If you have any worries contact a member of the SRC advice centre (email@example.com)before signing any lease or sending any money. All this info is summarised on a flat hunting poster you can grab a copy of here.
If you find yourself suddenly homeless for any reason, or circumstances mean that you are unable to access your own accommodation for any reason, and need a room for the night, try contacting the following organizations to see if they have rooms vacant:
Glasgow Winter Night Shelter
From 2 December 2012 to 23 February 2013, 10 pm to 7.30 am, at 24 McAlpine Street, Glasgow G2 7PT (between Broomielaw and Argyle Street).
Phone 0141 243 2293 or 0141 221 2630. It’s free and open to anyone with nowhere to sleep.
Hostels in Glasgow
Glasgow Youth Hostel
8 Park Terrace
Phone:+ 44 (0) 141 332 3004
Fax: + 44 (0) 141 332 5928
Euro Hostel Glasgow
318 Clyde Street,
Phone: + 44 (0) 141 222 2828
Contact ourselves (or the University Gatehouse if out of hours) if you find yourself unable to find anywhere to stay in an emergency.