Searching for a cosy new home is no easy task, but it can be a fun one for sure! Slowly finding out how your future house and surroundings will look like can be very exciting. Are you already excited about what’s to come? 🙂
Utrecht on its own is a mesmerizing place to discover, let alone biking around it every day to get to the university. If you are ready to move to this city, make sure to read these tips about housing that can save you same time (maybe even money).
Before diving into the article, watch the video below where Alina will guide you through a couple of tips and tricks.
1. WHERE TO FIND A ROOM
If you are sure you want to study in Utrecht, then the most important piece of advice I could give you is to create an SSH account. You won’t use it much now. Or in the next year(s).
Then why would you even bother, right? Well, the SSH organization offers student housing around the city of Utrecht (and even more) at very good prices compared to the market. Since it has such a good offer, many people are trying to get a room. Thus, there is a veeeeery long waiting list. It takes about 2/2 and a half years to receive a room. So, make an account now, and use it later. It will save you a lot of trouble in a few years.
Student housing in the Utrecht Science Park campus
Now, you still need a room for the first part of your studies. I always recommend Pararius because you do not have to pay in order to have an account. You can search for houses yourself and once you like one, you can get in contact with the agency that is offering the room. You see it, you like it – the agent likes you back – then it’s yours. It’s this easy.
Many students leave their rooms for a limited period of time. This is the perfect chance to get a furnished room for (usually) 6 months. This way you can experience different neighbourhoods and various styles of living in a house. No agency fee! However, people usually invite you AND other people for a viewing. They call it hospiteeravond in Dutch, which is similar to an interview. You see the people in the house, they see you. If they like you, then once again the room is yours.
2. BE AWARE OF SCAMMERS
Since Utrecht is a busy student city, scammers seem to take advantage. They can be anywhere, so you have to be very cautious who to trust. There is a very easy rule to keep in mind: do not send money before seeing the room, signing a contract, and preferably getting the keys. Of course, even at this point issues can appear, but make sure the organization/landlord is genuine, if possible search for reviews about them in Facebook groups and Google.
Additionally, many scammers do not seem to know how houses in the Netherlands look like. So they might send you fake pictures with houses that not even remotely look like the Dutch ones. Finally, ask for a viewing of the house. If they refuse/postpone saying they are out of the country, then think twice before going further in your renting process.
3. MOST ROOMS COME UNFURNISHED
Unless agreed upon with the landlord or an organization, you will most probably move all excited to an empty room. So empty that it might not even have a floor. No need to worry though. We all know the struggle. On Facebook, there are several groups where people like you are selling their furniture, utensils, etc. for cheap prices, or even sometimes giving them for free. You can find such groups here, and here. A quick search on Facebook can broaden your horizons even more.
Hopefully, these tips gave you a good overview of where to start and what to expect regarding your room hunt. Best of luck in your search.
Offer retrieved from Utrecht Free Ads Facebook group
Finally, the HU prepared some more information for you. Check it out here.