The Institution of Student Housing

In all regions of the UK, there is student accommodation. Huddersfield to Cambridge, Aberdeen to Oxford, nearly any town over a certain threshold has a university and the student digs that go with them. Yet, when you meet other students from different corners of Great Britain you soon realise that many of your experiences have common aspects, things you can relate to even though you are living hundreds of miles apart. In this article I want to show a few of the things that create this atmosphere of why student accommodation is an institution in its own right.

Firstly, all of you are in the same boat. It’s a simple fact, but you are with people who have just moved away from home, this is the first real taste of independence for many. But mostly, you are all starting this new chapter in your lives together. A lot of the time this means instant comradery forming between you all, almost at a subconscious level. When the endeavour of university can reach some tougher times this kinsmanship can be an excellent thing to be able to fall back on.

You all want to learn to some degree (no pun intended). Everyone at university is there to get a qualification, the type of degree and the importance every student puts on the educational side will vary from student to student. But you are all taking part in higher education, and there won’t be a time, unless you end up in a job which also offers accommodation to employees, where you will be living with people doing something quite as similar. This allows free time and working time to be similar, the stress of deadline is often equally divided amongst housemates, and if you’re lucky enough to be living with someone on your course, you can also discuss what you’re learning in the comfort of your own home.

You will all be broke at one time or another. Okay, there may be some student out there who is able to stay within their budget perfectly, but I have not met them yet. It often occurs that you will all get excited about your student loan at the same time, and perhaps forget to budget to the extent you should. This is not advised, but at least it is likely there will be others in the same position as you. Whereas in other living situations this will often not be the case. You can help support each other with budgeting, free(ish) activities and the like. Living in a place where everyone’s budget is thin can be a blessing, as often it means that there isn’t someone feeling guilty about not being able to go out to the cinema or the restaurant, because none of you can! So people don’t get left behind just because of their finances.

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