House hunting around the exam period

We all know this time of year isn’t great. We’ve just had a nice break at home with our families, with loads of presents and sooo much food. Now we’re back to the reality of Uni life with all its ups and downs. Most of us have exams, which we probably didn’t revise for as much as we would’ve liked (blame the Christmas cheer). Looking for a house on top of this seems impossible, but fear not! Check out these handy tips to make January a breeze…

Work out who you want to live as soon as you can

This is often the hardest part of house hunting so working out the kinks and getting a solid group together early will save you so much stress.

Use any free time to discuss what’s important to everyone

Some people may be adamant they want to be a 10-minute walk from campus, whereas others might be super stubborn about having 2 fridges. Having these discussions over a group meal or a drink means everyone can have their voice heard, communication within your group is the key to smooth house hunting season.

Have a firm budget everyone agrees on

This is a tricky one, money can be a sensitive subject, but it’s arguably the most important thing to agree on. Try and do some research early on (i.e. before the late night cramming sessions start) so you have a good general idea of the prices that everyone is willing to pay. Remember to consider what you think is worth paying for, some people would pay extra for a dining table whereas others would pay for an extra bathroom, keeping this in mind while setting a budget will make the process of elimination a lot easier, we promise eventually you will find your perfect home.

Align everyone’s exam timetables in January

This may seem a bit extreme, but if you can work out slots when 2 or 3 of you are free for a day or an afternoon, you’ll make sure no one ends up wandering around looking at houses just before an exam. Organising yourselves well also means that it won’t be left to one person to do ALL your viewings, it’s a lot of pressure for one person and it’s important for everyone to be happy with the house before committing! A great time is just after an exam, for a bit of a break ( and a quick trip to the pub, because you know, you’ve been working so hard recently) before you get your head down for the next one.


The group chat is your friend even if the notifications do wake you up at ungodly hours every night for a month. If you’ve found a good house make sure you communicate all the key details like price and location and check that everyone’s happy before making any commitments to the landlord. Group chats are a great way to do this so everyone can communicate on the go. Don’t worry, you can turn off those notifications soon, only a few weeks of this madness left!

AAAAAnd relax

Once you’ve signed and sealed your house for next year and your exams are over, you can chill and enjoy the rest of the term without any stress, it’ll be back to hangovers every weekday and “ oh I don’t really need to go to that 9am” (Until that coursework deadline comes around…)

We’ve still got loads of stunning properties available in Leeds, Leicester, Birmingham, Sheffield, Cardiff, Portsmouth and Exeter. If you’d like to book a viewing, or even just have a chat about how to house hunt visit our website now


Skills To Learn Online Now

Although you’ll be absorbing a lot of new information during your time at University and at this time of year I’m sure your head feels like its going to explode with revision, but when you do have some free time why not expand your skill set further. This is great for both padding out your CV, as well as making you a more rounded and interesting individual and to stop yourself going out all the time?! You can learn to do pretty much anything online for free these days, but here’s a pick of some of our favourites.


An invaluable skill for the digital world that we now live in. Even if you’re not a computer geek, you can easily pick up some basics.

Codecademy is one of the most popular free online courses. Or if you still feel a little nervous try some coding games designed for kids, although nothing beats the good old days of gaming on Miniclip. How can it be scary when there’s a puppy involved?

Learn a Language

If you didn’t pick to study a language at school or university, but you are now regretting it, do not fear here is your chance!

Duolingo is a free website and app that will make learning super fun. Just think how useful some Spanish could be when you’re interrailing or travelling around South America! Businesses also love it if you have a second language, gives you that edge.

Dapple in Philosophy

For fancy dinner table chat to make yourself sound a bit more intelligent, even if you don’t know what you’re on about.. check out Academic Earth where you can take a General Philosophy module from Oxford University for free. No lengthy UCAS applications necessary or all the hours of studying to even get into Oxford University.

Product Design/UX

Google offer a great online course with contributions from some industry leaders. Definitely worth taking the time out to have a go at, you may end up building something incredible…you could become the next Steve Jobs

Also check out ‘How to Start a Start Up’ if you want to hone your entrepreneurial flair and make your millions

Stand Up Comedy

If you want to develop your comedic skills, John Roy offers a free course through his Tumblr blog, which includes YouTube videos and homework assignments. Comedy homework sounds a lot more enticing than additional reading!

Social Media

Buffer offer a super neat free course that packs just 2 minutes of Social Media knowledge into a simple video directly to you every day for a week. An easy way to become educated in the basics of Social Media. Great for budding marketers or entrepreneurs as if you aren’t in the know about Social Media then you need to catch up!

Write copy for the web

If you love to write and want to learn more about it, Open 2 Study have a course that is really great for refining your online writing skills, covering everything from SEO (search engine optimisation for those of you in the dark ages) to web design.

If you’re still stuck for ideas have a browse through Coursera who offer free online courses from leading Uni’s for everything from Photography to Data Science. Happy Learning!