Frequently asked questions

If you are considering applying or awaiting an offer of accommodation from Birmingham, please read the information below.

I want to apply for accommodation

Is there a deadline for applying for accommodation?

To guarantee your place in accommodation, you must submit your application by:

  • 31 June 2022 (UK undergraduate students)
  • 31 July 2022 (non-UK undergraduate and postgraduate students).

You will also need to submit your application by the above dates even if you’re not eligible for our offer guarantee.

How can I find out my ID number if I’ve lost my offer letter…?

You can contact the Living team at info@living.bham.ac.uk or on +44(0)121 512 2158 to find out your ID number. You’ll just need to provide them with your full name, date of birth, and the first line of your current address.

If you haven’t received your offer letter, please contact Admissions at admissions@bham.ac.uk or on +44(0)121 415 8900.

What should I do if I need to chance my email address?

To change your email address, please contact admissions@contacts.bham.ac.uk from the email account you used in your application. You’ll need to tell them what email address you’d like to use, along with your student ID.

Haven’t got access to your old email account? You’ll need to contact Admissions and confirm your home address and date of birth to change your email address.

I am an Exchange/Study Abroad…Can I still apply for accommodation?

Yes – we can guarantee all eligible Study Abroad and Exchange students from outside the EU a room in accommodation. You just need to apply before 31 July 2022. Unfortunately, we can’t guarantee you a room if you’re an Erasmus student, although we still encourage you to apply for accommodation.

Please note that if you’re studying with us for only one semester, you’ll need to pay for your accommodation in full.

Can I apply for accommodation for just one term?

You can do; however, students who are applying for a full year of accommodation will be given priority. If you receive an accommodation offer, you’ll be required to pay in full.

Can I request to live with my friend?

There’s an ‘extra notes’ section on the application where you can make requests like these, but we can’t guarantee that we’ll fulfil them. Remember, both you and your friend will need to make the request for it to be considered.  

I have additional requirements for my accommodation

If I have a disability or medical need?

Yes, we always take any disability or medical need you may have into consideration. We often require a referral from Student Services to confirm these, so please get in touch with them on +44(0)121 414 5130. REST SAME

What are Taster Stays?

Taster Stays allow you to experience our accommodation first-hand before you start your course. Our dedicated page for students with disabilities will tell you more.  

What is alcohol-free accommodation?

In your first few weeks, you’ll create a shared living agreement with your flatmates about the use of alcohol to ensure everyone can live happily in their halls.

If you would like to be in alcohol-free accommodation, you can state this as a personal preference on your application. We’ll do our best to place you in alcohol-free accommodation; however, we cannot guarantee it as it’s subject to demand.

Can I apply for ‘kosher’ accommodation?

If you’d like to live in a kosher environment, please state this under the ‘additional information’ section of your application. We’ll endeavour to fulfil your request but please bear in mind that rooms are allocated once we know how many applicants have selected this preference. Therefore, we can’t guarantee kosher accommodation. 

I have received an offer of accommodation

Do I have to pay a deposit?

You won’t have to pay a deposit; you pay a £550 Advance Payment instead. This is essential for securing your accommodation and is an initial instalment towards your accommodation costs. Therefore, you won’t receive this payment back at the end of your contract and it will not be deducted from your remaining accommodation costs. Once you’ve paid the Advance Payment fee, you can pay for your accommodation in full or in instalments.

My accommodation has been cancelled. What can I do?

If you don’t accept your offer within four days, it will be cancelled. If you’d still like a place in University accommodation, you’ll need to apply online again. However, as your new application will be after the May/July deadline, your place will not be guaranteed.  

What’s included in the residence fee?

The residence fee includes all utility bills, internet access, telephone calls from your room o other rooms in the University, and basic room insurance. If you’re in catered accommodation, you’ll also receive a weekly food budget loaded onto your student ID card as part of this fee.

Postgraduates and professional students on the 10-,6- and 4-week course will also receive bedding and the use of crockery and cutlery in the kitchen.

When are the payments due? 

Please see the payments website for our monthly and termly payment dates.

Can I pay in instalments?

Yes. You can either pay in three termly instalments, or arrange a direct debit to pay your fee in eight instalments over your contract period.

There is no discount for paying your accommodation fees in full.

Paying your accommodation fees

I have accepted my accommodation offer

When can I move in?

All contracts for the 2022/23 academic year start on 19 September 2022. You’ll be able to select a timeslot for moving in via your Accommodation Portal after accepting your offer in August 2022.

Can I cancel my accommodation and get a refund?

Once you’ve accepted your accommodation offer and made your Advance Payment, you’ll only be released from your contract if a replacement can be found. If not, you’ll need to make your full accommodation payment. 

Do I need to bring my car with me to University?

Due to the convenient location of our accommodation sites to campus and the good public transport links to the local area, we do not recommend that you bring your car to University.

Parking permits are extremely limited at our University-owned accommodation sites and are typically only given to students holding a blue badge who need their car for medical reasons.

Where should I go if I have a query about my accommodation?

If your Village Reception is unable to assist, Living is based in University Centre. Our opening times are Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm (Tuesdays from 10am). Alternatively you can email us at info@living.bham.ac.uk.

What do I need to bring with me for my flat? 

Please take a look at the inventory for your flat on our Living with Us page. 

Information for parents and guardians

The education and welfare of our students is of the utmost importance to us, and we can assure you that our duty is to our students. That’s why all our students have access to a wide-ranging network of support services for both academic and non-academic issues. There are also processes in place to identify students in need of support and to refer them to the relevant service.

In the interests of respecting student privacy, we’re unable to discuss any concerns you may have without the student’s permission, as per our disclosure of information. We appreciate that this can be frustrating, however, this is a legal requirement (General Date protections Regulation 2018), and University policy prohibits the disclosure of an individual’s information. There are only certain situations in which this may not apply, and is dealt with in respect to the University’s duty of care.

What can I do if I am concerned?

The University will take your concerns seriously. Whilst we cannot discuss a student’s situation or circumstances with you (without their permission), including giving confirmation of whether they are attending the University, we can contact the student and offer appropriate help. It is then the student’s responsibility as to whether they choose to take advantage of that support and advice.

Where can I stay when visiting Birmingham?

The University’s Edgbaston Park Hotel offers 4-star, en-suite accommodation just 10 minutes from the Green Heart. With rooms to suit all budgets and tastes, as well as a restaurant and bar, the hotel has everything you’ll need for a comfortable and convenient stay on campus. 

What if I have other questions?

The Living team is here to support you with any accommodation queries. Get in touch with us at info@living.bham.ac.uk or via +44(0) 121 512 2158. We’re open Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm (from 10am on Tuesdays). 

Private sector accommodation

Where can I find information about accommodation in the private sector? 

Check out our dedicated online resource for students for all the information you need to rent in the private sector at community-living.org.uk/student-information.

Students have access to the free housing search engine Birmingham Studentpad, which is run by Living (Accommodation Services) and allows the user to search for all types of short or long-term accommodation.

Properties will only be advertised on Birmingham Studentpad if the relevant certificates have been presented. ALL landlords/agents are MLAS (Midland Landlord Accreditation Scheme) accredited and we can therefore guarantee at least a minimum set of accommodation standards.

What areas are close to the University? 

Most students live in Selly Oak, Harborne or Edgbaston.

I have a room available in the private sector, can I advertise it? 

Yes, you can advertise it via the Birmingham Sudentpad message board, but we will need to see the gas safety certificate first. You landlord should be able to provide you with this.  

I haven’t got my deposit back, what can I do?

All deposits should be covered by deposit protection schemes. You’ll need to contact the relevant scheme and they can tell more. Your landlord or letting agent will be able to tell you which scheme your deposit was protected with. If you need any more advice please call into the Living shop in University Centre.

My deposit hasn’t been returned in full. Can I dispute this? 

Yes, the deposit protection schemes all have dispute services where all issues can be resolved. 

Where do I find the council tax exemption form? 

You’ll find this at our Academic Services council tax page. Make sure you’ve registered your term-time address on the my.bham portal. 

I need short-term accommodation, can you help? 

It depends if we have any vacancies at the time you need, but we’ll do everything we can to source accommodation for you. We can also provide information on local guest houses and hotels. 

Can you check my contract for me before I sign it? 

We recommend that you get your contract checked, even if it’s from a reputable company. Just pop into the Living shop in University Centre to get yours checked for free. We’ll be able to point out any important information about charges, what’s expected of you as a tenant, and what rights you have regarding your landlord. We also recommend that you always view the property before you sign a contract. 

What do I do if I have issues with my landlord?

When sorting out any issues yourself, make sure you put any requests/complaints in writing to your landlord. If you continue to have problems please come to the Living shop in University Centre and we can help you further. 

I’m a landlord – how do I advertise my property to students? 

First, you need to have been accredited by the Midland Landlord Accreditation Scheme (MLAS). Second, your property needs to have up-to-date gas and electric safety certificates and an energy performance certificate. Once these have been done you can advertise on Birmingham Studentpad. Details of charges and more information about the MLAS course can also be found at the Midlands Landlord Accreditation Scheme site.

Second, third, fourth and fifth year students

Can I apply to stay in student accommodation? 

Yes, you’re welcome to return to University accommodation. Applications for returners open on 1 December 2021 and will close in January 2022. After then, you can still apply for returner accommodation via the Accommodation Portal, however, places will be limited. We therefore encourage you to consider other options for next year. 

Will I be living with other returning students? 

Where possible we try to place returning students together.

What happens once I have returned my contract and Advance Payment for University accommodation?

Once you’ve received a confirmation email from us, your room is reserved for you and your Advance Payment will be credited towards your residence fees. 

What happens if I change my mind? 

If you change your mind before you’ve signed and paid, just inform Living and your application will be cancelled. You can cancel your accommodation and receive a full refund, if you cancel within seven days of accepting it. If you change your mind after the seven days, you will remain liable for your contract unless a replacement can be found.

You should only accept the accommodation on the understanding that you will remain for the full contract period. For further information please contact Living on +44 (0)121 512 2158, or by visiting the Living shop in University Centre on campus.

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