It’s that time of year when students across the country will be receiving their keys to their new houses. If you’ve managed to bag a rat-free, damp-free, broken-furniture-free abode then well done – as for the rest of us, whack on ‘Common People’ by Pulp and romanticize like hell, it’s all we can do.
Colour code your new keys with nail varnish!
If, like me, you are moving from University halls to renting a house from a landlord for the first time, the move can be a tad confusing. The best thing you can be to keep the stress to a minimum is organised. Don’t be afraid to be a keen bean; by getting all the niggly things done asap, you can sooner settle down and begin to feel at home. So here’s a list of the things you have to do when moving into a new student house, as well as some things that are just out right good ideas, if I may say so myself….
Sort out your Bills
This is the biggest and most obvious thing to do, but it’s important not to leave it too late. When you first get your keys, you need to register your meter reading with your supplier as soon as possible, or you could be charged over the odds. Don’t forget to get a TV license and set up your wifi too, you wouldn’t want to arrive not being able to read Good Girl Gone Brum now would you? Exactly. Thought not.
Fill out an Inventory or Take Photos
The likelihood is that you handed over quite a hefty sum as your deposit on the house, and to make sure whatever you do or don’t get back after the year is fair, it’s a good idea to record the state you found the house in. If you’re given an inventory, fill this out properly within the deadline, or take photos of the place before you move all your stuff in. This way, you have evidence to show them if your landlord tries to suggest you caused any damage that was actually already there.
Say Hello to your new Neighbours.
This is a particularly good idea if the household next door are not students. You never know if there are going to be any awkward issues like music, late-night loudness or parking, so it’s a good bet to try and be on good terms from the beginning. Send over a little hello note, or if you’re feeling particularly community-spirited, cake. The worst that could happen is they’re not overly responsive, but at least then you couldn’t be accused of being devil-sent student neighbours.
Find out when Bin-day is.
The last thing you want is to keep missing bin day. Bags of festering rubbish blocking your way is the last thing that will make your house feel homey. Likewise, don’t just put the bins out all week and hope for the best – sacks of rubbish lying around can attract rats and apparently, you can even be fined for doing this.
Make your House your Home.
Once you’ve got all the boring business out of the way, you can get on to more important things like, y’know, buying a fish (meet Gavin!) and putting herbs on your kitchen windowsill. Little things like this will turn an unfamiliar house into your new home, so get yourself down to Ikea and start jazzing the place up a bit.
Warm up your House with your Pals.
Once everyone moves back after the summer, it would be wrong not to throw a house-warming gathering in your new place. You know you’re an adult when you give guided tours around your new home, showing off your ‘retro’ wall-paper and introducing them to the woodlice – so order in some pizza, get inviting, and introduce your friends to your humble abode.
Good luck everyone in your new student homes this year!