How to choose your accommodation + review
Hi! I hope you’re all excited about attending Warwick in September although it might look very different from what you’re expecting. Even usually, university is bound to be a very and new different experience but this year it’s going to be even more different. Hopefully, you’ll get a more normal environment starting 2021 (fingers crossed) but for now, let’s focus on what you have to do. Choosing your accommodation is one of the main things on a university prep to-do list and I think it’s a big part of your experience. So, let me tell you what you should be thinking about when making your choices and at the end, review my own accommodation!
I had to choose 6 student halls in order of preference and although usually only a few can be en-suite, as I was under 18 when I would be starting uni, I got to choose an ensuite option for all 6. Then I had to fill out a survey about my personality and preferences so that Warwick Accommodation can choose my flatmates for me.
Here are 8 things to consider when making your list:
- En-suite: for me, this was a pretty big factor because I really wanted my own bathroom. These are more expensive so think about it carefully and what you’d be comfortable with it.
- Location: there are options on Central Campus, in Lakeside Village, in Cryfield Hub, in Gibbet Hill and in Westwood. It could be useful to think about the distance to your department or the main buildings like the Oculus. If you’re someone who doesn’t mind the distance, you can choose options that are farther away and this can be cheaper sometimes.
- Cost: this is obviously one of the biggest factors to consider so keep your budget in mind and go through all the options that match your criteria. It’s a big decision to make and you may not get your first choice so ensure that at least your top three are ones that you would really like.
- Socializing rep: so, this is kind of a weird one but what I mean is how quiet or loud an accommodation is known to be. For example, Rootes is famous for partying and the most social people of all the accommodations. If you’d prefer something quieter, you might want to look at options such as Lakeside and Heronbank. It does come down to your flat at the end of it, but these reputations aren’t false either.
- Let length: some accommodations let lengths for 40 weeks and some for 35 weeks. The shorter ones mean that you have to move out over Easter holidays so if you’re an international student, I would recommend a 40-week let.
- Kitchen sharing: it’s also good to think about how many people you’d share a kitchen with. A lot of them are 6-8 but there are some where 12-18 people share a kitchen. If you’re particular about cleanliness, it’s better to have lesser people to a kitchen.
- House vs. halls: this is not a very common thing to consider but some accommodations such as Whitefields and Cryfield Townhouses have more of a house vibe because they are single units with more than floor to form a sort of house. Most other accommodations are flats which are more like halls, where you share a kitchen and have separate rooms on the same floor.
- Facilities: some accommodations have really cool facilities. For example, Cryfield has a student hub with a cinema room, a music room and a quiet room to study which is shared among all the three Cryfield accommodations. Lakeside and Heronbank share the Lakeside Quiet Room which is a quiet study room but also doubles as the place where the Residential Life Team held fun social events such as free pancakes for Pancake Day!
I hope this gives you a better idea of how to choose your accommodation!
Now coming to the review, in my first year, I stayed in Heronbank, specifically Heronbank North. It is located in Lakeside Village and as the name says, it is in close proximity to a beautiful lake. The rooms are ensuite and each flat usually has 8 people. The let length is 40 weeks.
I choose Heronbank because when I read up about accommodations, it had a reputation for being a quieter accommodation. As a teetotaller and someone who doesn’t enjoy clubbing, I preferred a quiet environment and Heronbank absolutely fit the bill. However, I am still an extrovert and I love talking to people and hanging out and I feel like Heronbank was maybe too quiet at times and I often found myself going over to my friends’ flats to socialize rather than stay in my flat. I really liked the location despite the distance (it’s a 10-minute walk to central campus) as it was really picturesque and calm. I was heavily warned about the geese and sometimes they were rather annoying but overall, it didn’t really impact my experience that much. I also really liked that I had access to the Lakeside Quiet Room which was great for some quiet studying because I could never study in my room. The room was also really spacious, which was perfect for me because I had a lot of stuff. It’s also super close to the Sports Hub which is perfect for people who want to do a lot of sport. I didn’t use it much but I thought it would be useful for you to know!
Overall, I would really recommend Heronbank if you want an accommodation that’s quiet, surrounded by nature and great value for money!
Feel free to comment or reach out for any questions about accommodation or my personal experiences!