Accommodation issues at Insurance offers(58 Posts)
My DS has an incredibly tough offer from his preferred uni. If he firms it, he will have to seriously consider the possibility he could end up going to his Insurance uni. However I hear really alarming stories about accommodation issues for students who enter via their Insurance offer or via Clearing. I think it is because of the cap coming off student numbers so the unis don't have enough space.
I know there are issues at Bristol and Exeter. Does anyone know if there are issues at Warwick or Imperial?
I'm interested in this too. I know that Durham doesn't guarantee the allocated college and won't look at near misses who insure, but could someone with knowledge or experience tell me a bit more about accommodation for insurers at Bristol and York?
Don't know about those specific unis, but a friend's daughter had problems with Exeter as her insurance last year, and I believe Bath have had issues during the last couple of years too.
goodbye - DD went to York as her insurance. She got accommodation in Halifax College which is a bit further out and is more of a mixture of students - postgrads, families etc. All her flatmates were at York after not getting their first choice, but she loved every minute of her first year and all of her housemates went on to share together in their second year (private rental). She is her final year so things may have changed a bit.
Friend's DCs had issues at Bath, Nottingham Trent and Cardiff last year.
I think if it's insurance there can often be issues but they generally get resolved, albeit not there first choices. All are very happy now though and funnily enough say that would choose the same again.
Re. Warwick, this has varied over the last few years. I've known situations one year where students who've arrived having chosen it as their insurance or even clearing offer have managed to get campus housing and other years when several ended up with hotel or shared rooms (including this year). However, it's worth noting that applications everywhere are down due to Brexit so there will be less pressure on accommodation.
DD's friend went to Bristol this year and had to share a room for about 8 weeks. She now has her own room. She was fine and survived it!
I know Manchester Uni are one of the best in terms of accommodation for all 1st years.
My understanding is that Bristol has a couple of new halls. No idea, but the problem may not be as acute as in previous years.
There has been a lot of building of accommodation in most Uni's to cope with demand so things may be getting better.
Some unis allow insurance holders to apply for accommodation and some will only allow firm offer holders to apply.
goodbyestranger DS2 has friends who got into York both as insurance and through clearing this year and they all got halls.York have built a lot of new halls and even have rooms for second and third years.
My DSS1 had Bristol as his Firm and got what was almost the shittiest accommodation available. He managed to change hall of residence after three months to his initial first choice though. Lots of students got terrible halls despite having Bristol as their Firm so whether having Bristol as Firm or Insurance makes a difference is a moot point. Of course, you won't get a good hall if you don't Firm Bristol - but Insuring Bristol doesn't mean you will be worse off than someone who Firmed it.
Many thanks for the replies - very helpful. Apologies to OP for deviating away from Warwick and Imperial to Bristol and York.
hellsbells - manchester may provide accommodation for all first years....i don't know. But i can't say my son likes his accommodation. he has not made one single friend in his halls - and he is a party animal with a wide group of friends at home. Half of his flat is made up of foreign students, and whilst this has proved interesting for him its not been condusive to friendships as they have such very different interests (ie not partying).
I think there are issues for all students at Imperial. DS's friend is paying a fortune for really tiny and grotty accommodation in Halls. Lots of students still live at home or return home after the first year and commute because of the cost, so the social life is more limited. Also lots of students in private halls. I think going to uni in London is a very different experience.
Am interested in this. I don't think DS3 will get the A star A A he needs for the place he wants to firm. He thinks it's worth a shot but I would prefer him to firm one of his AAB offers just to minimise the risk of accommodation issues.
DS2 is in his 2nd year at Exeter. It was his firm, he got his accommodation application in on time, but he still had to wait ages to hear what he'd been allocated and it wasn't ideal at all. Goodness knows how people manage without an insurance 'guarantee'.
Problems at Cardiff and Portsmouth for insurance and adjustment students. My DS ended up in private halls in Cardiff and although good accommodation hasn't led to the friendship he hoped for. Friend had to rent a house at Portsmouth as insurance place and again not the experience he hoped for.
should have pointed out that manchester was son's first choice for which he got the required grades - so halls can be disappointing if first or insurance choices....think its just a bit pot luck, though reviews of these particular halls seemed to suggest they were antisocial and they were his third choice. to give manchester their due they did say he could try to change in october.
Dd has friends who accepted Bristol as their insurance choice or accepted a place through clearing and they have had an extremely stressful time regarding accommodation. Most students who end up in this position will not be allocated accommodation at Bristol and will be pointed in the direction of private halls and rentals.
I think all uni's should make clear from the outset as to what happens regarding accommodation if a student accepts a place as insurance or clearing.
The accommodation issue was a factor in ds's thinking when he firmed a slightly lower offer from Warwick rather than his Exeter offer. He/we were very disappointed to find he was given a hall he hadn't requested, that is in dire need of refurbishment and he was placed with flatmates that he has nothing in common with. At least it is cheap. Fortunately he loves his course and has made friends through various student societies. But it has been salutary that making his offer for his firm choice didn't deliver the accommodation holy grail.
As far as Warwick is concerned I suspect the reduction in applications from Europeans is likely to make a significant difference. Ds is on a very small course and I estimate more than half are from other European countries.
My DS did not firm his high offer for Exeter precisely because he wanted to be sure of where he would be living. So he firmed a slightly lower offer elsewhere, applied for and got his preferred Hall, where he is now. It depends how important the living aspect and the benefit of certainty is to your DS. Mine is quite anal about a wide range of things do for him the benefit of certainty trumped any other considerations.
Posters here mention that applications from EU countries are down. Could I ask where this information is coming from? Are there published numbers anywhere?
jeanne16 - UCAS has published information about EU applications for the 15 October deadline and, IIRC, these were slightly down. However, clarity on fee and loan status of EU students for the 2017 intake was only published in the preceding week, which could have had an impact. AFAIK UCAS has not yet published analysis of applications at the 15 January deadline, which is the meaningful one.
Potentially, EU applications could rise this cycle due to uncertainty about future fee status. When fees were due to rise to £9,000 applications from EU students increased in the preceding cycle to take advantage of the lower fee rate.
Perhaps you should consider the cost of the accommodation. The halls that the university will offer, either owned by them or managed by them, are usually more expensive, up to £9000 pa in our town, than finding a room in the private sector.
Remember that the accumulated loan has to be paid off. The luxury en suite room will be hanging around as a debt for decades.
Additionally the 'party' atmosphere can be too much when some of them students actually want to work.
I have heard of fire alarms being set off: first time is amusing but the fun palls when the alarm goes at 3am for the 4th night in a row. The residents must get out of the hall for a roll call and may be fined for not attending.
In a large hall you will find that there is always someone with too much to drink making a row in the middle of the night.
purpeleo - i'm sure my son would love that to be the case - someone who'd had too much to drink making a noise in the night as he could join them. instead they have put a party animal with 3 teetotalers and 2 students who go home every weekend.
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