International Students' Guide to Renting Accommodation in Glasgow West End

Photo: New University building. Glasgow West End is a great place for an international student to stay - and Glasgow is a great place to study; friendly people, beautiful victorian architecture, great nightlife, parks to visit in the summer and more culture than you can shake a stick at.

Many of the colleges and universities around Glasgow have a high percentage of international students so you will be joining a thriving community with plenty of support mechanisms there to help you study and live in Glasgow West End. You will have a choice of renting a flat from a private landlord or accommodation managed by your place of study.

According to recent research Glasgow is the safest city to stay in the UK. Student accommodation in the private sector in Glasgow is regulated through HMO licensing, so if you are careful your stay should be a safe and enjoyable one.

There are of course many things to consider when coming over to Glasgow to study: finding accommodation being one of the most important. Hopefully this guide will help you learn about finding a rental property in Glasgow so you can get on with your studies and not have to worry about where or how to find a place to live. The first and most important thing to do is to find out from your university or place of study, exactly what the procedures are available to help you in your search; start your research before you arrive in the city as the quicker your get your accommodation sorted out the better.

The university you are studying at will help you find somewhere to stay

Many of the universities offer help to their international students to find the perfect accommodation - which means you are pretty much guaranteed to find somewhere to stay. As well as on-campus flats, there is also a massive amount of privately rented properties available to all students - so there should not be a problem with students not having anywhere to live during term time and out of term time.

"The university guarantees accommodation to international students (from outside the E.U.) in their first year of study and has invested heavily in the student residences in recent years."
Glasgow Caledonian University

"The University guarantees accommodation for all international students." Strathclyde University

Residential accommodation on-campus

Glasgow's Universities provide their own residential properties. For example, Glasgow Caledonain provides a facility at Caledonain Court with 660 self-catering flats with between six and eight bedrooms in each flat. The rooms are all provided with broadband internet connections; not something you are likely to get in private flats. Glasgow University also provides residential accommodation for students - you can download their comprehensive Glasgow University residential accommodation for students guide (PDF). Google the university or college you are attending for their page on the accommodation for relevant information.

Priority of the Universities facilities and rooms are given to younger students and also to the international students; all the rooms are self catering allowing a certain amount of freedom to the occupier. Should there be no places left in the residence connected to your place of study; don't worry they will help you find a property that is just right for you; you will not be left out in the cold. Of course, you may wish to spread your wings a little, especially in your later years of study, and find your own place to rent. In that case there is plenty of choice of property to rent in Glasgow.

Photo: Ashton Lane lights. Universities in Glasgow don't tend to provide residence for exchange students or for international students bringing their family with them; they don't usually provide family accommodation. If any international student does bring their family with them and they then go looking for a rented property; bear in mind that these can be extremely expensive in Glasgow as generally the houses or properties are bigger and need more upkeep.

Costs for private accommodation

Private landlord flats start at about ?240 per month - however you need to remember that on top of that you have the account for your household costs, e.g., energy bills, tv license, telephone bills and so on. To keep your costs low you may decide to share a flat with other students. This is a good idea if you are keen to brush up on your language skills; you may go home with a Glasgow accent. :-) Sharing with other students will help you to find friends and quickly discover the local social scene.

Expect to be asked for a guarantor

When renting privately in Glasgow your may be asked to provide a guarantor for the rent (if you can't pay the rent, then your guarantor would be asked to do so), or asked to pay a deposit, sometimes up to six months rent. This differs with all landlords so find out what is needed before moving in.

You may need a temporary place to live when you first arrive in Glasgow or while you wait for your rental agreement to come through or to pick up the keys; the universities usually offer accommodation at a local youth hostel or hotel that is close to the school while you wait.

Tips for staying safe and finding a flat that is fit for purpose

Here are some suggestions to keep you safe while looking for a flat in Glasgow West End,

  • Always take a friend with you when viewing a potential place to stay.
  • Get a feel for the area by visiting a different times of the day and evening.
  • Check that everything works in the flat, e.g., hot water, heating. if there are problems ask for them to be fixed before you move in.
  • Ask to look at the landlords license for the accommodation.
  • Check that fire escapes are available and working.

Glasgow University reading room at night When you have your rented property or you are staying in the universities residence then it may be advised to get some form of contents insurance. You will not be covered by the schools insurance if anything happens on campus and the landlord doesn't usually provide contents insurance. You need to safe guard yourself from any wrong doing.

Be a good neighbour

Once you have found your accommodation and moved in don't forget to do the things that will keep good relations with your neighbours, e.g., take your turn cleaning common stairs if you are in a tenement, put your rubbish in the bins provided (you are not allowed to dump rubbish in the street). Tell your neighours if you are going to have a party and try to keep noise down to a level that is not anti-social.

Links related to international student accommodation in Glasgow West End

Flats to let in Glasgow West End

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