Choosing your halls accommodation (a Tocil resident perspective)
Disclaimer – For the most up-to-date information regarding prices and let lengths, please do refer to the official Warwick Accomodation website!
Now that applications for campus accommodation are open, many of you are probably asking the same question about choosing where to live. So to help you out, here are several do’s and don’ts to consider during the application process. Plus against each factor I’m going to rank my current accommodation, Tocil, so you can consider whether it might be the right place for you!
- The price range across all the campus residences is very flexible to accommodate pretty much all budgets. But it’s worth considering how much money you would like leftover to cover other expenses such as food, recreational activities and meeting up with friends. For instance if going out is more important to you, than you will have to accommodate for this with your residence choice.
- Tocil – 9/10 As a mid-range option, Tocil and its facilities are very economical for the price you’re paying. Providing everything you would pretty much need without needing to break the bank!
- How far would you like to travel on a daily basis between lectures, seminars and other commitments on campus? Are you someone who prefers to have everything close by or do you like having a bit of a commute? The majority of students tend to do their grocery shopping at Tesco, so how far are you willing to walk and carry heavy bags?
- Tocil – 10/10 Location is probably one of THE biggest incentives for choosing Tocil. Located in the centre of campus, most major facilities such as the Library, the Oculus, Sports Centre and the SU are all within a 3min walk radius. Plus its one of the closest halls to Tesco and the local shopping centre Canon Park.
Number of people to facilities ratio
- How many people would you be comfortable sharing a kitchen or bathroom facilities with? While a lower ratio does mean more space and greater convenience for each person, a higher ratio does allow you to meet and befriend a larger body of people!
- Tocil – 8/10 Each Tocil flat can have up to 6 or 12 people, with each flat sharing one kitchen and about 3 or 4 people to one bathroom. If you’re concerned about sharing a bathroom, please don’t be! Since everyone has different schedules and waking-up times, rarely do any issues arise and it feels very similar to how you would share a bathroom at home.
- Not all residences can be rented for the same amount of time. A select few such as Arthur Vick and Jack Martin are only 35 weeks long, meaning you will have to vacate your room over the Easter holidays. Whether this is an inconvenience does vary from person to person, for some this may be a deal-breaker while for others isn’t really a priority.
- Tocil – 8/10 Tocil’s let length does cover the Easter break, so there was no need for me to pack and then unpack all my belongings at the end of term!
Flat or corridor
- The living environment across each residence isn’t identical. Some have a corridor layout where students on the same corridor all share the same facilities which aren’t behind a locked door, making it much easier to go and socialise with your neighbours! A flat layout on the other hand means about 5-12 students are grouped together and share the same facilities that only they can access, allowing you to form a closer community.
- Tocil – 8/10 Personally I love the flat layout of Tocil. It has allowed me and my flatmates to get to know each other much more easily. Particularly over times when we’ve cooked together or played board games!
Atmosphere and identity
- This really depends on the type of person you are! Do you prefer a lively, sociable environment where you can easily meet lots of people, or do you prefer having a more peaceful space? Sadly this is something you can’t really determine without living here yourself. But the best way to find out more about this is by asking current students at an Open Day or online about their experiences.
- Tocil – 7/10 Unlike the more outgoing residences such as Rootes, Tocil is more on the peaceful side thanks to its flat-style layout. Noise isn’t a common issue and is only distracting when there’s an odd party going on downstairs! One of the downsides for me was the kitchen was the only communal space in the flat. So if everyone was busy it did get a bit too quiet at times. However I wouldn’t say this is something unique to Tocil. Plus if it does get quiet, it’s ideal location makes it easy go out and meet up friends at other residences.
Just consider kitchen facilities
- Despite obvious differences such as size and layout, all residences share the same basic facilities (hob, cooker, fridges, freezers, microwave, etc) so there’s no need to filter them out by this! Plus the quality of all of the facilities is fairly consistent across each hall. So while a new, swanky kitchen would be nice, don’t make securing one your number one priority!
- Looks aren’t everything, an aesthetically-pleasing residence on the outside might not be very practical for you in the long run! So make sure to prioritise on your basic needs first.
In summary, each person is going to have different requirements depending on their personality or course, so there is no right or wrong decision. The best thing you can do is to list what your priorities are and use them to narrow down your choices.
Hope this helps!