Bradford House Hunting - our comprehensive guide

Before you start looking

Help in finding the right accommodation for you

The house hunting season

Doing a thorough search

Using the support that’s available

Student to student notice board and individual lets

Housing myths and rumours

In short …

 

Before you start looking

First, make sure you have read our advice on things you need to know before you start house hunting. Taking a bit of time to arm yourself with some sound knowledge pays dividends: you’ll make better decisions and are more likely to be happy with the deal you get, the price you pay and your living arrangements generally.
 

Help in finding the right accommodation for you

Finding accommodation that is right for you is an important part of college life, in both the first and subsequent years of study. It is vital you get the right support to help you explore the options fully and make informed decisions.

The key sources of support are your institution, your students’ union and Unipol. Institutions clearly play the central role for students seeking to enter accommodation which they allocate directly to. For students interested in other forms of accommodation, Unipol is the main resource. Students in this category are mainly returners, but include a sizeable number of new students – and significant among these are new postgraduates and students with dependants.

Institutions and students’ unions will provide advice and information on accommodation. Unipol offers advice, information, property search website and house hunting events.

Click here for Unipol’s help and advice pages, including contact details.

The house hunting season

Every city with students has a different time and method for finding student accommodation. It is estimated that in Bradford over 2,000 students will live in privately rented accommodation and most will be second and subsequent year students (returning students).

In Bradford there is an administrative start date to house hunting and for next year’s houses (2019-2020 courses) which as 4th February. Unipol can offer you the widest choice and the largest collection of bed spaces anywhere in Bradford and these can be viewed now. The start date of house hunting is there to increase choice and transparency in the letting market; to ensure that there is a decent amount of comparable property for you to choose from; and to allow you to plan your house hunting.

Don’t let the start date panic you into renting something you don’t want. There is a 2,500 bed space surplus in Bradford and good quality accommodation is available throughout the year. Don’t rent before the start date unless you are staying with your existing landlord. Those who do often pay more. Unipol and the University and College will provide you with information before the start date to help you make sound, informed decisions.

Doing a thorough search

Take your time and look at a good selection of properties. If you rush in and sign up for one of the first properties you look at, you may be lucky and land a good one. But the chances are that a thorough, more measured search will get you better accommodation at a better price. Be wary of landlords or agents applying undue pressure to make a decision on a property.

Using the support that’s available

You can’t do better than using Unipol as a resource for supporting you in your search for private rented accommodation. Our services include:

  • information and advice
  • website advertising for landlords
  • administration of highly respected accreditation schemes

Extensive information and advice is provided on this website. Additonally, Unipol publish a House hunting guide in December each year. If you want even more detail, call in and pick up a copy of our Housing magazine which contains lots of Unipol and Code owners’ properties.

We offer the widest choice and largest number of bed spaces in Bradford. Using this website, you can browse advertised properties and book viewings. Through us, you can get access to over 1,000 advertised bed spaces, displayed in a way that ensures transparency and no hidden bias.

Unipol has pioneered accreditation schemes in the student housing sector. Innovative in design, set-up and operation, the Unipol Code offers tenants a high level of assurance about what they are renting and how it is managed. It makes real sense to rent a Code property – look out for the badge on advertised properties. You can check whether a landlord is registered as a Code owner by clicking here.

To supplement what we offer, you may wish to make the most of the support of your students’ union advice service and your institution, with whom we work closely. The students’ unions  provide an information and advice service. In using all these resources, you can be confident of making the right decisions at the right time.

Housing myths and rumours

Every year some students fall foul of various housing myths and rumours such as:

  • There is a housing shortage – this is simply not true. In Bradford there is a surplus of good quality accommodation. Students who leave their house hunting until the summer before they return to university still secure good houses.
  • All the best places go first – often students who sign up for houses too early are actually signing for properties left over from the previous year! Wait for the official house hunting start date when over 1,000 bed spaces are released on to the Unipol website for students to view.
  • Everyone pays sign up fees – many owners do not ask students to pay admin or sign up fees. If you don’t want to pay, choose an owner who doesn’t charge them. Unipol will not expect you to pay for setting up a contract. Ask what you are paying for.

In short …

  • work out who you want to live with
  • explore different areas of Bradford to decide where you want to live
  • calculate how much you can afford (don’t forget gas, electricity etc)
  • discuss the amenities you want in the property. 

Finally, it’s a good idea to seek advice on the legal aspects of renting on, for instance, your own contractual responsibilities and your landlord’s.  Contact your Unipol or your Students’ Union Advice Centre and also look at the Unipol Code for further information.