Private Rented Accommodation
This type of accommodation is not owned by the University, it is owned by a landlord.
This could be an apartment or a room in a shared house or flat so costs can vary – a room in a shared house can cost anywhere from £50 to £100 per week, depending on what you’re looking for.
You will also probably be asked to provide a deposit, usually one month’s rent in advance.
A room in shared private accommodation may seem less expensive than University accommodation but you should consider that while the cost of University accommodation includes your utilities (heat, electric, etc.) plus insurance & up to 50mbs of wifi, your private accommodation may not and so you may want to check on this with the landlord.
You are responsible for finding and inspecting the property, ensuring it is clean and safe, signing the contract and paying the rent and bills.
Before signing your contract please ensure the landlord has put adequate Covid-19 safety measures in place to keep you and other residents safe. This is especially important if you are arriving at a different time from others in the house and you are required to self-isolate. In this case you should not be in contact with other residents who have already completed self-isolation.
As with University accommodation you will be asked to sign a contract or tenancy agreement for private accommodation so you will want to view the accommodation and ask any questions about rent, utilities, etc. before you sign.
Any accommodation agreements between yourself and the landlord will remain strictly independent from Ulster University.
Please remember that if you have the use of a television in your private rented accommodation then you must have a television licence.
More information on TV licensing is available at: www.tvlicensing.co.uk
The Key to Private Renting
The office for Global Engagement cannot endorse individual private accommodation providers but some useful accommodation websites include:
The Immigration Act 2014 introduced new legislation on adults renting premises in the UK. Landlords are now required by law to make document checks to establish a tenant’s right to rent before making a tenancy agreement.
Students coming from countries within the European Economic Area (EEA) can satisfy the check by showing their passport or other specified documents such as driving licence in combination with a full birth certificate – photocopies are not acceptable. Students who come from countries outside the European Economic Area (EEA) will be asked to provide their Biometric Residence Permit and usually their passport.
Landlords will only usually need to make checks at the beginning of a tenancy but follow-up checks may also be done during a tenancy where travel documents show that there is a time limit on the stay in the UK. If a follow up check indicates that a tenant has passed the date of their stay in the UK the landlord must report that tenant to the Home Office.
You can assist your landlord and speed up the process for yourself, by making sure that your documents are ready for checking when the landlord needs to see them. Further information on the documents required by landlords can be found here and here.
Please check out these links for good practical advice on things you need to be aware of when thinking about renting private accommodation.
- Community relations information
- Tenants rights during Covid 19
- Advice on Moving In to your new accommodation
- Top tips for private renting
If you are not moving into university accommodation you must book temporary accommodation before you leave home unless you are sure that you can move directly into long term accommodation on the day you arrive in Northern Ireland.
The International Student Experience team can help you get information on where to find temporary accommodation or you might want to check out Discover Northern Ireland or Hostel World for information on bed & breakfast, hotels, self-catering apartments. We advise students to consider buying possessions insurance to cover personal belongings such as your phone, laptop, etc.
You should speak to an insurance provider before you leave home.