YOUNG VOICES

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Living In University Halls?

12/06/2014 14:41 BST | Updated 12/06/2014 14:59 BST

Living in university halls could be the greatest experience of your life or a living nightmare. There’s a fair bit of luck involved when it comes to location and flatmates, but what are the main pros and cons of choosing halls over private accommodation? Which? University asked current uni students to share their living experiences…

Pros

1. The social aspect and community feel

"Overall, staying in halls is a very wise choice to start your journey at the University as it is place where you'll certainly make most of your friends." - Aberdeen University, 3rd year, Management studies

"I shared with seven other students and I couldn't have asked for better housemates, they really made me feel welcome. I even had someone who studies my course living opposite to walk to lectures with! All my friends lived close by so it was such an amazing community feel. Seriously gutted that I can only stay there for a year, going to miss it!" - Edge Hill University, 1st year, Social studies

2. The chance to meet different types of people

"I met loads of new people from different countries and made loads of friends and studying buddies. It was great that there was so much help available if you felt lonely or had any other problems - student support assistants come for a visit every month." - University of Dundee, 3rd year, Geography

"First year halls are fantastic. You will get to meet and live with a diverse bunch of people, most of whom you often find yourself sharing a house or flat with in the next few years of your study." - University of Southampton, 1st year, Geology

3. Being able to roll out of bed into lectures

"The halls of residence are amazing for a first year student because they are so close to all the uni facilities including lecture halls and gym." - University of Dundee, 3rd year, Social studies

"The Hawthorns (a student house) is in the best location - it is right next to the uni buildings and therefore perfect if you like to roll out of bed and be in your lecture 5 minutes later!" - University of Bristol, 3rd year, Law

"The main halls in the centre of town tend to be the more preferable ones as they are close to shops and very close to university making those early starts feel much better." - Sheffield Hallam University, 3rd year, Computing

4. It can help ease you into independent living

"Halls are the best idea for first year if you haven't had any experience of living on your own because they take the money for the accommodation after your first instalment of student finance comes in but before you have had chance to spend it. All of your bills are included and it gives a very good opportunity to mix." - Cardiff University, 3rd year, Dentistry

Cons

1. Halls could be more expensive than private accommodation

"Staying in halls is more expensive than in private accommodation, but you have facilities included such as heating and water and accommodation staff are on hand if any repairs are necessary." - University of South Wales, 1st year, Health sciences

"You may find it expensive for what is on offer. Also, there is a huge discrepancy in terms of the high-end and low-end accommodation in terms of comfort." - Aberdeen University, 3rd year, Management studies

2. You might get noisy neighbours

"The walls in my halls were especially thin, so you can hear everything that is going on in the kitchen even if you are at the end of the corridor. This may be great during fresher’s week, but afterwards the perpetually drunk group of people on your floor will start to annoy you so much, the way they have no concern for other people." - Liverpool John Moores University, 1st year, Creative writing

"Officially you aren't meant to have parties in your flat but who are we trying to kid, these are student halls! Don't expect complete silence is all I would advise for staying in any halls. If you have noisy neighbours it's much better to give them a knock on the door and ask them politely to keep the noise down if you are trying to sleep or study." - University of Central Lancashire, 2nd year, Midwifery

3. You might not get the cleanest flatmates

"The shared spaces in my halls were often messy and dirty - sharing such a small amount of bathrooms between up to 14 people is very difficult and there is no lounge area to spend time in. All the time in my halls has to spent in your room or in the kitchen, which depending on who you live with could be spotless or really grim." - Anglia Ruskin University, 2nd year, Plant sciences

"As much as people become your friends, someone always steals your food, uses your things or doesn't do their fair share of the washing up." - University of Northampton, 1st year, Psychology

4. A lack of privacy and personal space

"There is a nice sense of community sometimes and there are often hall events. However the halls do get very cliquey which is much more noticeable when you all eat meals in the same room. Halls are very sociable but if you, like me, are the sort of person who needs their own space, by the end of the year I did find living in catered halls very draining as you were constantly surrounded by people." - University of St Andrews, 3rd year, History

"You could end up sharing a flat with five wild animals who couldn't care less about your privacy or need for rest/studies." - Edinburgh Napier University, 1st year, History

You can visit Which? University for information on accommodation.