“The most common types of accommodation for international students in the UK generally fall into three categories: school halls of residence, homestay and off-campus rented accommodation. The accommodation options here are similar to those in the USA. I believe that the most popular choice of Leeds student accommodation for international students is the school dormitory, but if you have a partner who is studying with you or has the same interests, then off-campus rentals are a good option! Homestays are more suitable for younger students, but temporary accommodation is only an option if you are looking for a long-term group.

Way 1: On-campus dormitory, safest but more expensive

The advantage of applying for a school dormitory is that safety is guaranteed to the greatest extent, as the management of school dormitories is very strict, and school dormitories generally provide students with water, electricity and internet access, all bills are included in the accommodation fee, no need to run to the bank or write a cheque every month, a complete service to give students who have just arrived to study abroad a piece of mind, the disadvantage is that the fees are expensive, and due to the unified management of the school, international students The downside is that it is expensive, and because the school is so centralised, international students have less flexibility to choose their own accommodation. However, it is important to note that not every university can provide accommodation for students. Most schools in the UK can provide on-campus accommodation for international students, guaranteeing accommodation for international postgraduate students on campus and international undergraduate students in their first year. In addition, many universities in the UK have student accommodation in Leeds available for students going on language and foundation courses:

Twin Room/Shared Room

Twin rooms are for students who like to share a room and are afraid of living in a room by themselves. Generally speaking, the Twin Room is the cheapest of all room types.

En-suite Room

En-suite rooms are rooms where each person has their own room with their own bathroom and shower room. Usually 4-8 En-suite rooms are grouped together and called Cluster Flat or Flat, each with a common door, shared living room, kitchen etc.

3. Studio Room

A studio flat or a studio suite with a bed, desk, wardrobe, toilet, bathroom and kitchen. Some places offer deluxe studios (large single rooms) which can be shared by two people (usually a couple). The difference between this and an En-suite Room is that the suite comes with its own kitchen and does not need to be shared. It is also more expensive than the En-suite.

4. One Bedroom Flat

The difference between a One Bedroom Flat and a Studio is that the kitchen is separated from the bedroom by a solid wall, so you don’t have to worry about the sound and fumes affecting the bedroom, so the price is the highest.

Option 2: Renting off-campus saves money and freedom, but poses a safety risk

Renting off-campus allows you to choose the house that suits you best and practice your living skills. The cost of this option is lower compared to other options, but because off-campus rentals have to apply for these fees in person, such as utilities and internet access, counting the time it takes to do so actually creates some intangible costs. The process is cumbersome. Students usually look for properties through school bulletin boards, online information, referrals from friends or rental agents, and the student office or student centre will have someone on hand to guide them through the Council Tax process. It is important that you remain vigilant as the internet and agents are inevitably full of false information. Gingerbread reminds you that in the UK, you have to pay Council Tax on rented accommodation, but students are exempt from it, so it is best to share a room with a student.

Advantages and disadvantages of on-campus accommodation:

On-campus halls of residence are those run and managed by the university, while off-campus halls of residence are those run and managed by the halls of residence company. My feeling is that the numbers are 50/50. There are individual school halls of residence that used to be managed by a halls of residence company and the school has since bought them out. Both of these are dormitories, with management staff, and generally an aunt who does the hygiene work for a week or two.

1): [Choice] Live in student dormitories it generally includes the school’s internal and external flats and off-campus houses managed by the school. You can apply to the school at home before you study abroad and the school will notify you by email of the location of the dormitory you have been placed in. You can move in as soon as you arrive at the school and pay the deposit and check in. This method is very popular with international students who have just arrived in the UK. However, as student accommodation is allocated by the school and the tenancy is fixed and cannot be changed, you have little choice yourself.

2) [Rooms] Most halls of residence in the UK provide their own bathroom. Some studios (one-bedroom) also have a separate kitchen with a fridge and other equipment for cooking, while others share a kitchen with 4-8 people and provide 1-2 fridges depending on the number of people. A single bed is provided in all dormitory rooms, but you can also request a double bed from the school.

3): [Furnishings and recreational facilities] There is usually a communal recreation room in the dormitory for students to use, with TVs, pool and other facilities. Some dormitories also have a gym and swimming pool in the dormitory building (of course there is an additional fee to join the gym). Internet, telephone, etc. are available in the halls of residence and TV sets are usually provided in the communal kitchen.

4): [Electricity, water, gas and other expenses] The school dormitory is all inclusive of electricity and water, which means that when it is cold (many students will be there all year round) you can turn on your heater 24 hours a day without worrying about the electricity bill. For TV and internet, there are some charges depending on the school. But the internet is all on a separate line, so you don’t have to worry about people stealing your speed.

5): [Convenience] For international students living on campus, you will also face some inconveniences in life. For example, many student dormitories do not have laundry machines, so you will have to choose to use the coin laundry, share a washing machine with your roommate or wash your clothes by hand.

Advantages and disadvantages of off-campus accommodation:

1): [Living] The biggest disadvantage of this method is that landlords usually ask you to eat with them in order to keep the kitchen clean. Also, the British strive for ‘simple’ cooking and can bread and butter a meal, which is not easy for us to adapt to.

2): [Room] If you are renting out a room, it goes without saying that you can go and see the room yourself. Of course you can also rent your own one-bedroom cottage on the upper and lower floors. This will be a bit more expensive though. However if you rent a house that is not a flat then you will also have additional facilities such as a garden, garage etc.

3): [Furnishings and entertainment] If you are renting out a room, it naturally depends on what the landlord provides, the most you can get is a TV in the living room. Generally, there are two types of rentals: furnished and unfurnished, with or without furnishings.

4): [Utilities and other costs] Renting out is a big disadvantage in this respect. Each company has different charges, so it can be difficult to choose. Unlike schools, where you can go to the hostel manager and pay for the service, the operator will usually take two weeks to a month to install the network for you. This is a very difficult period to get through! Also the cost of water, electricity and gas will prevent you from being as happy with the heating as you would be at school.

5): [Convenience] Living in a private house or flat is more convenient, the furniture is more complete, even if the furniture is old and broken or missing, you can ask the landlord to replace it with a new one or add to it. Broadband internet is especially important for international students, and landlords are usually willing to install it through negotiation, as long as you pay for it through your bank account. However, there are some disadvantages to this more liberal form of renting. If the rent does not include electricity, water and gas, it can be a difficult problem to pay. Only with all-inclusive rentals can you avoid conflicts over costs.

Way 3: Homestay with a strong family atmosphere and adaptability

International students who choose to stay with a local family are usually mostly secondary school students, and these local families are families with no criminal records. International students live with a host family and are provided with accommodation and two meals in the morning and evening, while lunch is provided by the school. The biggest advantage of this option is that you can quickly integrate into local life and experience the local culture, but there is also the problem of differences between the cultural habits of international students and local families. However, there is also the problem of differences in cultural habits between international students and local families, which requires the international student to adjust slowly and integrate into local life as soon as possible in order to get the most out of it.

Homestay is suitable for secondary school students who have little self-control. For university students who have the ability to be independent and self-controlled, especially those studying for a one-year master’s degree, homestay is not necessary. However, students are advised to take time out, preferably for festivals such as Christmas and Easter, to participate in a small residential family program to experience the festive atmosphere of a local family and get a taste of a truly exotic culture.”

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