The article is focused on Nottingham as that’s where I’ve really done house hunting but the concepts are general and apply to most areas in England.
Honestly, house hunting in Nottingham is not for the weak minded, you have to just be prepared for anything you see. Back in Nigeria and people kept asking oh Yommie have you gotten a place yet? I was like ah ah, is it not to just go and spot a place then bounce up. See!!! I was absolutely wrong, not just wrong but incredibly disgraced😂. House hunting was a struggle. Took me roughly 2-3 months to find somewhere I really liked, my eyes are big sha, so yeah, just start early. For context, I’m studying an MSc in psychology at NTU. So, I’m a big girl- more or less.
I remember in Nigeria I was like I’ll get an apartment with a walk in closet, mirrors everywhere, a nice bath, a view overlooking the city yen yen yen. With what budget Yommie?😂😂
Okay let’s get into it. First of all there are websites where you can put in your specifications and preview options, I personally prefer private accommodation because I’ll rather not live with undergrads and the rules and regulations of student accommodation. A few websites to check include;
On these sites you’ll actually see pictures of property, you can contact the agents/landlords and please feel free to ask any questions you want, you want to be sure before you waste your time and energy popping into viewings when it’s not worth it.
Secondly, define your negotiables and non-negotiables. For me personally one core thing was proximity to the city center, another was no shared toilet. I also wanted somewhere with space, UK homes make me feel a bit claustrophobic. I really like space.
Facebook is the secret sauce- interestingly, I got my accomodation on Facebook and it’s really pretty and nice, I know a lot of people don’t use Facebook anymore, but NTU and University of Nottingham have Facebook groups strictly for accommodation which really helps because some people are looking to swap, so you get really good deals, some even offer you money off, you can have direct contact with residents and landlords, meet your potential housemate(s), so it’s worth checking.
Do your due diligence- don’t just move into anywhere because it seems cutie, that’s a JJC move, if it’s too good to be true, you want to be careful. There are scammers, slimy bitches and fraudulent people everywhere so you want to check that they’re legit, check that the energy levels of the property are good. If it’s a letting agency, google them. There was a nice two bed apartment I was going to move into until I googled the agency and all the reviews were bitter complaints. Omox20.
Next, if you can, do in person viewings- don’t just take pictures or online videos and run along or pay up. Try and schedule an in person viewing, wear a face mask, carry your sanitizer and step in. Because my dear, people photoshop, make things look bigger and better, so it’s good to go there and see things for yourself. A word is enough. There was somewhere I went to check that was smelling, like a nasty smell even through my mask. I was so upset with the agent, like don’t you rate me? What is this stank smell😭? There are more stories but please, just go in person to see with your two eyes if you can.
Also, have a budget range and try to stick with it, if you search well enough, you’ll find something suitable. Study your contract very well and get a second pair of eyes before signing. See, to be forewarned is to be forearmed o👀. Then try not to get stuck in a long contract you can’t easily come out of. You don’t know what can come up and you don’t want to be stuck in a mess.
How did I almost forget, I personally prefer places that have bills inclusive, so once I’ve paid, I’m not burdened with any further responsibilities. Bills can creep up on you so don’t be penny wise, pound foolish. For the bills, get clear specifications on everything you’re paying for- it should normally include wifi, water, electricity. Also, if you’re going for a furnished property ensure there’s a reading table and chair, a wardrobe, storage because châle, e be tins😂
Also, you want to google and check the crime rates in the area you’re considering. This is to you ensure you’re relatively safe and your properties are safe too. Try and have conversations with people in the area too so you’ll know if that’s suitable for you. Don’t just jump in anywhere because it’s within your budget or cheap.
Finally, think about yourself, what your preferences are, how you thrive better. Are you a one man army? Do you prefer being with people? Are you okay with a lot of people or just few? What’s your sexuality? Your religious affiliation? Does being with people of the same race matter to you or you don’t mind?
You have to be open minded, you may not get everything you want.
Hope this helps? Feel free to shoot me any questions you have ☺️❤️
Your favorite neighborhood slay queen