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FAQs about student accommodation

Read the answers to the most common questions we are asked about our student accommodation.

How to contact Residential Services

Don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about student accommodation, or if you need support or advice.

Tel: +44 (0)23 8059 5959

Email: accommodation@soton.ac.uk

Common accommodation questions for

Other commonly asked questions

 

Insurance choice students

If you are an undergraduate student and have made the University of Southampton your Insurance choice you are covered by the guarantee as long as you submit an application by 1st August.

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Adjustment and clearing

If you join the University through adjustment or clearing we encourage you to make an application for halls of residence. Although we cannot guarantee accommodation we do have a number of places available in our halls of residence that will be offered to students accepted through clearing or adjustment. You may be offered a twin shared room where you will be prioritised for a single room as soon as one become available. Early application is advisable.

Twin shared accommodation

A twin room is one of our larger study bedrooms set up with two beds to allow two students to share the room and its facilities for a temporary period. As some of the facilities are being shared, the room is offered at a reduced rate of rent for any period where two students are in residence.

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International students

If you are a new, unaccompanied, non-EU international student, you are guaranteed an offer of a room in halls for the duration of your studies. For your first year, you will need to apply by August 1st in the calendar year in which your studies begin. For subsequent years, you must apply for accommodation during the second term for the coming academic year; the deadline for applications will be publicised nearer the time.

*International students are those paying international tuition fees.

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Postgraduate students

International: If you are an international fee paying postgraduate student, you are guaranteed an offer of accommodation for your first year as long as you comply with the criteria stated in the guarantee.

UK and EU: Although we are not usually able to guarantee accommodation for UK and EU or Channel Island postgraduate students we encourage you to make an application and we will offer you based on availability. We also still offer guidance and support in finding alternative accommodation if required.

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Couples and families

If you are coming to Southampton to study as part of a couple or a family we can still offer you support in finding accommodation and may be able to offer you University owned accommodation.

To find out more about University accommodation suitable for couples or families including how to apply, please see our flats and houses page.  This type of accommodation is only available to students and staff at the University and is very limited, therefore we cannot guarantee that we will be able to make you an offer if you apply as a couple or family.

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What accommodation is provided for students with disabilities and/or medical requirements?

At the University of Southampton we already have a range of accessible and adapted rooms, including some with specific equipment and fixtures. We work closely with the University's Enabling Service to find suitable accommodation, making reasonable adaptations where and when possible based on individual requirements. Please contact  Enabling Services, and provide details of your needs on your accommodation application form. You will be required to provide medical or appropriate evidence to Enabling Services to support your application and any additional requirements that you may need. All details that you provide will be kept confidential.

Further information about the support that can be offered to disabled students can be obtained from the Enabling Service, either by telephone on +44 (0)23 8059 7726 or by email at enable@soton.ac.uk. You can also find more information on the Enabling Service website.

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Study abroad and exchange students

Every year the University attracts many visiting students from all over the world, on study abroad and exchange programmes.

We are able to guarantee accommodation for students on a wide range of study abroad and exchange programmes. To find out if your programme includes a guarantee of accommodation, please contact us. Unfortunately we are not able to guarantee accommodation to students on the Erasmus+ exchange programme. 

If we do not offer a guarantee of accommodation for your programme, you are still welcome to apply. However, applications are on a first come, first served basis and you may wish to look at private rented housing in Southampton.

If you are coming to Southampton for the whole year or for Semester 1 only (arriving in September) we ask that you apply by 1st August. Later applications will not be treated as guaranteed.

If you are coming on an exchange for Semester 2 (arriving in January), we encourage you to submit an application as early as possible with a requirement that applications are made before 1st December.

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Students who are under 18

If you are planning to join the University before your 18th birthday but after your 16th birthday, we will guarantee you a place in a hall of residence providing you apply for accommodation by the deadline of 1 August. If you decide not to take up this option, please let us know well in advance of your arrival and contact us to discuss this in more detail.

If you are a UK or EU student and will be under 16 when you start studying we will prioritise you and your guardian for suitable family accommodation. Please contact us via accommodation@soton.ac.uk to discuss this in more detail.

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Part-catered accommodation

Part-catered accommodation is available at two of our halls, Wessex Lane and Highfield Hall . For more detailed information about catering in halls, please see the University catering website.

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How do I apply for accommodation at the University of Southampton?

To apply for accommodation you need to submit an online application for the relevant year you wish to live in halls. You are able to apply once you have been made an offer to study at the University and the application is open.

If your application is for next year and you are a new student, you should apply for accommodation by the 1st August in the year you commence your studies. If you are a continuing student then you will be notified when the continuing deadline is each year (around January/February). If you are applying for accommodation in the current academic year, applications will open as soon as there is availability in halls.

Find out more and apply here.

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What options of contract length are there?

36, 38 or 40 Week contracts are most suitable for undergraduates, whereas postgraduates usually prefer the 51 Week contract. If you choose a shorter contract and find you need to stay in Halls over the summer, you can apply for this summer accommodation from Spring 2016 onwards.

In some Halls we offer a 36 week contract, known as standard 36 week contract , which runs until 1 July but excludes the Easter vacation period. This means that students with this contract need to move out of their room completely over Easter, before returning to their hall once the vacation has ended. All our contracts include accommodation over the Christmas vacation period.

Not every contract length is offered in every hall.

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How much choice do I have?

On our online application form the majority of students will be asked to fill in 3-5 preferences (minimum of 3) with options based on catering (self-catered or part-catered), halls site, room type and contract length. We will allocate and match accommodation as closely as possible to students' preferences, although preferences cannot be guaranteed.

Students studying in Winchester can choose to apply for just Erasmus Park, our hall in Winchester.

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What if I don't like what I've been offered?

We will offer you the best option available on the day of allocation, taking into account availability, suitability, student options and profile, and the need to create a balanced community in halls. We are not able to change allocations once they have been made.

Whilst we do look at each case individually, we are only able to effect a change where there are extremely exceptional circumstances - usually where we are given late evidence of rapid onset medical conditions or other fresh requirements that necessitate a change.

We sometimes find that if a student is not happy with their allocation when they receive it, they change their mind once they have moved in. However, if after moving in you still wish to change your accommodation, you are welcome to apply to transfer to a different room or hall.

Please note that if you reject your offer of accommodation but you still require a room you will need to submit a new application. This application will not be considered until all other unallocated students have been made an offer, so we cannot guarantee that we will be able to make you another offer of a room in halls.

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When and where do I pay for my accommodation?

The date each instalment of your residence fees is due is included in your offer of accommodation. The easiest way to pay your fees by Recurring Card Payment, which you will be required to set up when accepting your offer of accommodation.

If you do not wish to pay using the recurring card payment you set up when accepting your offer, then you can cancel this and use one of the following alternative methods of payment; at the Student Services Centre on the Highfield Campus by credit/debit card, cheque or cash, or you can pay online at www.webpayments.soton.ac.uk.

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What support and advice do you offer students living in the private rented sector?

The University of Southampton runs an accreditation scheme (the Southampton Accreditation Scheme for Student Housing, or SASSH) in conjunction with Southampton Solent University and Southampton City Council. All properties that the University advertises on its private rented lists have to join the accreditation scheme. Accredited properties will comply with the standards of the SASSH scheme. Please see the SASSH website for more information.

For further information and guidance on private rented accommodation, please visit the accommodation section on the Student Services website.

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If I have welfare or financial concerns, is there someone I can talk to?

The University has a number of services that you can talk to for advice and guidance about the many different issues that students may face. The Student Services Centre has a team of Advisors that can provide much useful assistance and where appropriate offer advice about other sources of information and support. These may include the Residence Support Service in your Hall of Residence, the Mentor Service, the Counselling Service, Financial Information and Assistance and the Students Union Advice Centre.

The Student Services Centre is here to help you and the sooner we know about an issue the quicker we can help you to resolve it.

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How do I report faults or maintenance issues with my halls room?

All faults should be reported online through the Planon Self-Service system. This can be found through the Sussed Portal (www.sussed.soton.ac.uk) and is on the right hand side under Personal Links or it can be accessed directly at http://planon.soton.ac.uk.

If it is extremely urgent or an emergency then you should contact your halls reception.

You can also monitor the progress of any faults reported through this system.

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Can I park my car at my halls of residence?

We strongly discourage all residents of our Halls from bringing their cars to the University of Southampton. The proximity of most University locations to each other and the quality of public transport systems means it is not necessary in most cases. It is a stance that is also considerate of the environmental impact of the unnecessary use of cars as well as the impact on the local community.

We can only offer spaces to our residents if they have certified medical conditions or exceptional circumstances which require them to run a vehicle. Applications for a parking permit for these reasons should be made in writing to parking@soton.ac.uk before taking up residence. All residents in Halls should be aware that it is the policy of the City Council not to issue parking permits for use on residential roads or in council car parks to residents of University Halls.

All other residents, at Halls excluding City Gateway and Mayflower, can purchase three visitor permits per term from your Halls Reception. These permits can be used when family and friends visit throughout the year. We also offer free parking during specific periods within the year, for more information on when free car parking is available at your Halls please contact your Halls Reception.

We understand the need for students to travel within Southampton, and therefore a unilink bus pass is included when purchasing your accommodation with us for the academic year.

We also allow some parking on site during moving in/moving out periods, please contact accommodation@soton.ac.uk or speak to your hall reception for further information.

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Moving in

Once you have received and accepted an offer of accommodation you can start planning your arrival. As part of this you will need to complete an e-induction to book your arrival time. Your e-induction will also include information on directions, what to bring and important things you need to know before moving in.

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What is a show flat?

 

Show flats aim to provide prospective students with an opportunity to see what student accommodation is like. A room in a show flat will always be left unoccupied, allowing visitors a chance to see an example of a room that we offer.

Visits to show flats are always as part of a guided hall tour where visitors will be accompanied by a tour guide. They will only enter and visit communal areas, such as the corridors and kitchens, and they will have access to the show room. They will not have access to any occupied room.

Tours can take place between 10:00-17:00 daily between October and April, with the busy period in February and March.

It is the responsibility of the trained tour guide to show the visitors around and to answer any questions. However, if residents are present during a tour, we expect that they are polite and friendly.

Additional cleaning is provided in the communal areas and shared facilities of a show flat, and we expect that these areas are kept clean and tidy with no potentially offensive material visible.

Due to the disturbance these tours may have on residents, £10 per week will be deducted from the accommodation fee. Residents also benefit from having one fewer resident in the flat, meaning additional space in the kitchen and shared facilities.

If show flat residents are unable to keep the communal areas at a reasonable standard, or intentionally disrupt the tours then Residential Services reserve the right to move the residents to a flat of similar category and location that is not a show flat.

Sometimes, it may be necessary for tours to happen in flats that have not been designated show flats. If a tour is scheduled for another flat, it will again visit a vacant room and the communal areas of a flat. Residents will be notified in advance and will receive £10 per week a tour occurs in this flat as gratitude for the cooperation and help of residents.

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private housing

Renting privately

Read our advice, and find out what support we offer for renting privately in Southampton and Winchester

Living costs

Living costs

Read about the cost of living for University of Southampton students

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