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Whether you’re a postgraduate or affiliate student starting your studies at UCL this January, or are just arriving on campus for the first time after studying remotely in Term 1, our Advice Service is here to support you. We have put together the following tips to help you adjust to life in London.

Accommodation

If you still need to find a place to stay during your studies UCL, University of London Housing Services is a great place to start looking. If you are interested in staying in UCL accommodation, you can submit an application on UCL’s Accommodation Portal.

If you find new accommodation and you need some help to understand your tenancy agreement, or if you have any specific questions about it, you can contact us for some advice and support.

If you are moving into private rented accommodation, make sure to:

  • Arrange your bills – when you move in, you will usually need to open a new gas and electricity account for the property, either with the current supplier or with a new supplier of your choice. You can find some tips for switching gas or electricity supplier on the Money Helper website.
  • Check your deposit is protected - If you have an assured shorthold tenancy, your landlord must protect your deposit in a tenancy deposit scheme until you move out of the property. Find out how to check if your deposit is being protected. 
  • Apply for a council tax exemption - You will first need to register for council tax with your local council. If you and all of your housemates are full-time students, you will be exempt from paying council tax. You can apply for an exemption by sending your council a copy of your statement of student status

You can find further tips for moving into a student house on our website.

Finances

Being a student can be tough on your finances, so it’s a good idea to get your money in order sooner rather than later.

You can organise your finances by:

  • Making a budget - planning a budget will allow you to assess if your income will be enough to cover your spending, and adjust your plans if you find that you are overspending. You can find a useful online budgeting tool on the Money Advice Service website.
  • Spending your money wisely - try to stick to your budget by shopping around for good deals and saving money wherever you can. You could try buying second hand books, buying food in bulk and taking advantage of the student discounts available to you via the NUS Totum card or student discount sites like UNiDAYSStudent Beans and Save the Student.
  • Seeking support - if you are struggling financially and would like some further support with budgeting or money management, you can contact the Advice Service using our online form.

Covid-19

If you need to quarantine when you arrive in the UK, or need to self-isolate at any point during your studies, there is lots of support on offer.

To help you stay informed and able to access support, make sure to:

  • Check the UK government guidance on travelling to England from another country.
  • Keep updated with the Covid-19 rules in England on the UK government website.
  • Use UCL’s Connect to Protect reporting tool to let UCL know if you need to self-isolate.
  • Check UCL’s resources to help you stay mentally and physically well during your quarantine or self-isolation period.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us.