Student accommodation guide #4: living at home
Heading to a local university – or one within commuting distance? If you're considering living at home, here are the pros and the cons...
Paying rent for university halls or private accommodation is often the biggest drain on students' budget. Even if you're paying a small amount in rent to your family, plus your travel to attend classes a couple of days a week, it may be significantly cheaper than living at uni (though it depends on your individual circumstances).
As a result, there has been a rise in 'commuter students', with some universities reporting that around half of their undergraduate students live at home.
But as we see below, you may lose out on some of the social benefits of living close to the action, at uni...
Living at home: pros and consBefore ruling out other accommodation options, weigh up the pros and cons of staying at home…
Pros of living at home:
- Cheap option: even with commuting costs, you should save money overall
- No moving out: one less hassle to worry about when starting university
- Home perks: someone else to sort out your cooking, washing, cleaning (or at least help out)
Freshers' survival: laundry and washing at university
Cons of living at home:
- Commuting: could take up a lot of your time (and money!)
- Someone else’s rules: expect less independence than your living-in-halls peers
Away from the action: you’ll need to find other ways to meet students. Plus, it can be difficult to socialise in the evening if you need to get the last train, unless you have somewhere to stay.
Typical costs: staying at home vs. uni accommodationWhatever your arrangement, chances are living at home will be by far your most affordable accommodation option.
According to the NUS' 'Homes Fit For Study' report, the average rent for those staying at home was just £72, compared to £426 for university-managed halls or £366 for privately-rented housing.
And the majority of students surveyed who were living at home weren't actually paying any rent at all!
That said, when comparing with other options, do factor in the cost of your commute into university, as well as other costs you agree with your family to cover (eg utility bills, food).
About our data
* Which? University Student Survey 2018