Herefordshire College of Technology (HCT) has no campus accommodation, so this service puts students in touch with private providers who offer accommodation locally, either in their own homes or in shared student houses. It is an information only service.
The College inspects lodging/homeshare properties once a year. All shared student houses must be registered with the Herefordshire Council Private Sector Housing Home Certification scheme to go on our list. The aim is to ensure that at least minimum standards are adhered to. The college and the staff working at the college do not accept any responsibility for the quality or price of the accommodation offered. Students choose their own accommodation from the lists which are sent to them, and students (and their parents) must ensure that the accommodation they book is of an acceptable standard before they move in.
Lists of accommodation are sent out to students in April. Student accommodation in Hereford is limited, and lists are sent out on a “first come, first served” basis. Numbers of students applying each year varies, as does the accommodation available, and for this reason it is not possible to guarantee that every student who applies will find suitable accommodation, but those who start looking should not have a problem.
It is essential students make appointments to come to Hereford to view the accommodation they like the sound of having spoken to the owners. It is essential that you meet the owners and have a look before you agree to stay somewhere. It is advisable to phone and visit accommodation as soon as possible after receiving the lists to avoid disappointment. When looking for accommodation it is important to bring enough money to pay the deposit so as to secure the accommodation. The accommodation provider will then let you know when you need to start paying for your accommodation, which is usually the week before you move in. Payment is made directly to the accommodation providers. You will need to discuss this, along with the other rules of the house, when you visit the accommodation provider. Make sure you get all the information you need to make an informed decision as to where you will be happy for the year. If you are applying for funding to assist with payment, you must inform the provider. Also, be aware that any financial assistance you might receive may not cover the whole cost of your rent, and you are responsible for making sure that the shortfall is paid to the provider.
If you are looking for accommodation after September then phone, e-mail or visit Learner Services. Vacancies do occasionally occur for different reasons during the year.
There are three types of accommodation available:-
Shared Student Houses (Self-Catering) - Over 18's only
Students rent a room in a house and share the living room, kitchen and bathroom with other students. Most houses will accommodate four students, some are larger. Rent is based on a 10 month contract from September to July each year. (N.B. This applies regardless of the start and end dates of courses attending). Rent ranges per week, depending on room size, facilities, bills etc. When booking accommodation you will need to pay a booking and/or administration fee to the landlord to secure the room. Rent is usually paid in advance, by two months or termly and the landlord will advise you when you need to make your first payment. You are strongly advised to read any contracts very carefully before signing, taking note of what the terms and period of notice are. Most landlords will not release you from the contract unless you are able to find someone else to take your place. Landlords will not consider students who are under 18 for this type of accommodation as they are not legally able to sign a contract.
Home Share (Self-Catering)
Students rent a single room in the resident owner’s home on a self-catering basis, sharing the kitchen, bathroom, etc with the owner. The owner could be a single person or have a family, and some properties have other students in the house as well. It usually works out cheaper than Student House Share as all the bills are paid by the home-owner, who will also provide basic essentials such as loo paper, washing-up liquid, dustbin bags, etc. Costs vary depending on room size etc, and rent is usually payable weekly or fortnightly in advance. Some homeshares are not available at weekends. Full rent is not usually payable during holidays and work experience periods as long as the accommodation provider is informed beforehand, but half-rent or a small cash retainer may be required for these periods – check beforehand with the accommodation provider. One or two weeks’ notice is usually required if students want to leave. Check with landlord beforehand.
Lodgings (Catered Accommodation)
Students rent a single bedroom in the resident owner’s home and are provided with breakfast and evening meal on a 4, 5 or 7 night basis. Some of the properties have other students in the house, and this will be detailed on the accommodation list. Not many people offer accommodation at weekends as well, so it is advisable to book this type of accommodation as soon as possible. Costs vary depending on room size etc, and rent is payable either weekly or fortnightly in advance. Full rent is not usually payable during holidays and work experience periods as long as the accommodation provider is informed beforehand, but half-rent or a small cash retainer may be required for these periods – check beforehand with the accommodation provider. One or two weeks’ notice is usually required if students want to leave. Check with landlord beforehand.
Things to Think About
- Will I have to pay a retainer during the holiday?
- What is the notice requirements?
- What do I get for my money eg, food, bills paid?
- Can I smoke in the house?
- Will I be allowed to stay at the weekends?
- What happens if I am ill?
- How will I get to college?
- What are the house rules? eg. in by 10pm, no friends allowed round, no smoking etc.
- Can I stay at the weekend?
- How much is the deposit?
Top Things to do
- Talk to the landlord
- Ask as many questions as you possibly can
- Visit the accommodation (or several so you can compare)
- Make sure you can abide by the house rules
- Every landlord and offer is different and negotiable – make sure you are getting what you need
- Make sure you feel happy with the landlord and in the house. You will be living there for a year
For any enquiries relating to accommodation, please contact:
Learner Services Coordinator
Tel: 01432 365460