As you embark on your transition to becoming a teacher in the UK, you want to consider major decisions, like finding a place to live, early. Accommodations will vary by your location and other factors, and it can be hard to know where to begin when relocating to a new country.
Before you begin your search, have a list of options you consider essential and those you consider important but not needed. This will help you when considering your choices. As you begin to find possible homes, here are some questions you should ask when making inquiries:
- What is included in the rent? Are any utilities included, does rent provide you with use of common areas or spaces, are there additional fees you can expect to pay?
- If the flat is rented as “furnished,” what does that actually include? What appliances and housewares are there, if any, and what can you expect to need to purchase upon arrival?
- How, where, and to whom do you pay rent each month?
- Who is responsible for setting up utilities? If you, who can assist you? What have previous renters paid, on average, for these utilities?
- What maintenance or repairs are you responsible for? Who do you call when there is a problem?
- What paperwork will you need to have in order to secure the lease and rent the flat?
- What is the deposit amount? What are the conditions for receiving your deposit back at the end of the lease?
- What are all the terms of the lease? Is always a good idea to have an attorney or someone with legal knowledge read your lease.
- Is there cell phone and internet coverage in the area? How good is service? What can you expect to pay?
Most likely, you will be sharing your new space with a roommate (or two). Before making that commitment, it’s a good idea to get to know some things about them. While it is not necessary that you become best friends with your roommate, it’s always important that you and they agree on some basics that make cohabitating agreeable. Consider talking to them about these things before you commit to sharing space:
Their cleaning habits and routines
Their friends and how often you can expect them to be in your flat
Their personal habits that might affect your space (e., smoking, drinking at home, pets, etc.)
Their relationships with former roommates
Their work habits, hours, and whether they ever work from home
Their relationship status and how often significant others are over
Their expectations for shared cooking, cleaning, etc.
Whether they often have out-of-town or overnight guests
While there are many options for searching for a flat and/or roommate, we have a few businesses we endorse as great ways to help our new teachers find that perfect place to call your new home. With years of experience and much to choose from, teachers relocating to the UK should consider using Gumtree, Easy Roommate, SpareRoom, HousePals, and Arrive Homes. All of these websites allow you to customise your search and will make finding your temporary UK home much easier.
Remember that your time in the UK is temporary, and you’ll be focused on your new work of teaching, so be sure you arrange housing in a timely manner. These tips should make the process easier, and you’ll be settled into your new home in no time.