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Top tips to university success

best student accommodation salford

University is such a special and unique time. For many, it’s your first real step into adulthood and looking after yourself. It’s freedom, independence and a time to grow. Above all else, it’s a time to learn. As you fall into your new life in a new city with new friends it can be easy to forget why you applied for university in the first place; to learn. Whilst it can be argued uni is one big learning curve; learning to look after yourself, cook, clean, be organised and on time are all valuable life skills, you need be focused on your studies and work hard. University can equip you with the knowledge and experience needed to succeed in your future career. Use the time and resources at your disposal wisely and you’ll reap the benefits long after graduation.

Here are our top tips to university success…

Student accommodation

Where you live (and who you live with) can make or break your uni experience. It’s where you’ll spend most of your time and so it needs to be secure, welcoming and comfortable. Getting a good night’s sleep in a safe and cosy environment will dictate your mood, concentration levels and general well-being and happiness. You need an appropriate space to study, relax, socialise, sleep, cook and live.

At Mistoria Estate Agents we provide high quality student houses, furnished with everything necessary for students to survive and thrive including per room rentals, all inclusive bills and high speed internet. Take a look at our website for the best student accommodation Salford and Liverpool has to offer.

A new lifestyle

It’s never too late to get into good habits but the sooner you establish them the better. You’ll know whether you’re a morning person or a night owl so plan your routine around your natural cycle. Remember to eat healthily, drink plenty of water, get a good night’s sleep and be organised. Set your morning alarm allowing enough time for breakfast, plan your meals and remember to include fresh fruit and vegetables in your diet. Get an early night before morning lectures and exams. Buy a diary and plan. Allow yourself time to work and play. Mark key coursework deadlines and exam dates in the diary and work backwards to plan out an achievable work schedule.

Social life

An active and varied social life will have knock on effects in all aspects for your life. Joining societies akin to your interests will help you to make new friends as well as gain valuable experience in your areas of interest. Active involvement in societies and sport team successes can lead to university awards and achievements to add to your CV.

Discipline

Simply put, if you don’t knuckle down and put in the required work, you won’t get the results you need or want. University isn’t like college or sixth form; it requires a lot of self discipline. No one is going to chase you if don’t attend lectures or seminars (eventually you’ll get a formal letter or email), lecturers aren’t there to babysit you and your parents won’t be there to nag you to get out of bed in the morning and drive you to class. You need to be self-motivated and strict with yourself. Work hard everyday and get the most out of your university experience. It will be good practice for working life where self motivation, managing your workload and prioritising will all be key.

Work experience

Take advantage of your university’s connections and opportunities and absorb as much of your department’s resources as possible. Internships and the chance to study abroad are common offerings. Using the resources on offer can give you the edge over competitors when it comes to applying for jobs after university. The saying “it’s not what you know but who you know” applies here. A work experience placement could even lead directly to a job offer if you impress.

Make the most of your university years and you’ll enjoy the fruits of your labour for years to come.

To find out more about Mistoria Estate Agents and the properties available in Salford and Liverpool please visit www.mistoriaestateagents.co.uk or call us on 0800 500 3015 or alternatively email us on info@mistoria.co.uk

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Renting your first student house

liverpool student lettings

Are you a first year university student? If you are, you’ll no doubt be starting to look for next year’s accommodation already.

The search seems to start earlier and earlier each year and at Mistoria Estate Agents we’ve already had lots of Freshers (as well as second, third and fourth year students) enquiring about Salford and Liverpool Student lettings for the 2018/19 year.

We understand that many of you won’t have dealt with landlords or letting agents before and that the whole process can seem pretty daunting and complicated but it needn’t be. Renting your first student house should be a fun experience but it’s really important to make the right decision about where to live and who to live with. Will it be your friends from halls, those on your course, sport teammates or society buddies? Whoever you choose to live with, it’s a big step into adulthood that you can all take together.

When beginning your search it’s crucial you use a reputable letting agent. Mistoria Estate Agents are members of both the National Landlord Association (NLA) and the UKALA (UK Association of Letting Agents). We are a leading agent and the largest private student accommodation provider in the North West with over 250 properties in Liverpool and Salford.

Here are our top tips for first year students looking for Salford and Liverpool Student lettings:

Rent

Rent will be your biggest outgoing each month and you need to know that you can afford to make the payments. Look at your finances, work out how much you can afford and only view properties that fall into your budget. Once you know your budget you can start looking at different types of accommodation and affordable areas.

Finding the right property

At Mistoria Estate Agents we offer all inclusive rent which includes many of the household bills you’ll be expected to pay including energy, water and internet! We also advertise our properties on a room-by-room basis so you and your housemates can view houses with the correct number of bedrooms for your group, as well as quickly determine affordability.

Deposit

Once you’ve settled on a property you and your new housemates will be required to pay a deposit. This is a compulsory payment that all letting agents ask for and is needed for two main reasons; one, as a down-payment to secure the property for you until the start of your tenancy, meaning it cannot be let out to anyone else once you have handed over your money and signed the tenancy agreement. It is there for your protection. Secondly, the deposit will act as a buffer to you and the landlord should one of your housemates up and leave part way through the tenancy, to cover any unpaid bills or for damages to the property during the tenancy.

All deposits received by Mistoria Estate Agents are put into a deposit protection scheme (as required by law) for the length of the tenancy. NO DEPOSITS ARE HELD BY MISTORIA ESTATE AGENTS.

In the vast majority of cases, deposits are returned in full at the end of a tenancy. The only time this doesn’t happen is when there are outstanding utility bills to pay or there is damage to the property that is the fault of the tenants.

Inventory

When you move in to your property the landlord or letting agents will carry out an inventory. This document will state the condition of the property, as well as a list of all fixtures and fittings in the property. It acts as a record for all parties to know what belongs to the landlord and what condition everything is in. At the end of the tenancy this information should help to avoid any disputes.

During the tenancy

At Mistoria Estate Agents we carry out quarterly inspections of all our properties at a time and date agreed with tenants. This helps us keep up with any maintenance issues and any necessary repairs. We do, however, ask that you inform us immediately of any faults or damages so they can be addressed as soon as possible and avoid further problems. For example, if the property is suffering with lots of condensation, we need to address it before it turns into a damp or mould problem. The key to any successful tenancy is to leave the property in the same condition that you found it in – this means keeping on top of cleaning and day-to-day house-keeping and maintenance. We understand many of you will be new to this but you need to take the responsibility of renting a property seriously and treat the property with respect.

Entering into your first student let is a unique and exciting experience and one we hope you will enjoy. For the best private Salford and Liverpool Student lettings, speak to Mistoria Estate Agents on 0800 500 3015 or visit www.mistoriaestateagents.co.uk.

 

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Student home security tips for the Christmas holidays

student home security

Over the Christmas holidays, many students return home to spend the festivities with their families, leaving their term-time accommodation empty.

Popular student areas of university towns and cities across the country can be regular targets for break-ins at any time of year, but it’s over the festive period that incidents can peak. Would-be-thieves take what they can carry so student gadgets such as laptops, tablets, phones, games consoles and even bicycles are often stolen.

Properties are usually targeted when burglars know they are vacant. Over Christmas and New Year, the majority of student accommodation will lie unoccupied for up to four weeks! Whilst protecting your house from thieves, there are also some essential maintenance issues we ask you and your housemates to think about before heading home for the holidays. Here are our student home security tips:

If anything is broken, tell us. We’ll need to fix it before you leave. This doesn’t just apply to the Christmas break, but all year round; if we don’t know something is broken, we can’t fix it. It’s your responsibility to inform us of any damages or faults within your property.

Don’t shout about the fact you’re away from your property on Facebook. Today’s criminals are clever and will lurk on social media sites to find their victims. A seemingly innocent post about heading home for Christmas can be all they need to know a property is going to be empty.

Ensure your contents are insured. If you have several gadgets, the combined cost to replace them if lost or stolen can really mount up. There are specialist student insurers which are easy to find with a quick internet search so at least if the worst happens, you know your belongings can be replaced.

Mistoria properties have locks on all external windows and doors. They are there for your protection and must be used whenever you are not in the property. Before you head home for Christmas make doubly sure all windows and doors are locked and where fitted, ensure the intruder alarm is also set. Test this now and if it’s broken, let us know so we can replace it asap.

Do not leave anything of value on show that may be visible from the outside or to someone peering in through the window. Thieves know younger people aren’t always as aware when it comes to home security and this can be another reason student homes and areas are targets for burglaries.

24 hour socket timers are inexpensive and extremely effective in the prevention of burglaries. They work by intermittently turning lights on and off to make it appear like your home is occupied. There are some short 60 second videos on the GMP website (Greater Manchester Police) that offer further advice and easy to follow steps to keep your home safe if you’re going away.

Aside from security measures, before you pack up and head home for Christmas, we also ask our tenants to leave the heating on at a low setting for short periods each day and ensure that the system cannot drop below a set temperature that can lead to frozen pipes.

We also advise emptying the fridge before you leave of anything that is likely to go off whilst you’re away – think dairy, meats and fresh fruit and veg – and take out the bins. Nobody wants to come back to a sinking fridge and kitchen in January!

Wishing all our tenants a safe and merry Christmas and a very happy New Year, from all at Mistoria!

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UK student property investment is booming

liverpool student property investment

As a result of a weak pound post Brexit and the superior yields and occupancy offered by student accommodation in UK university towns and cities, investment in student property has seen a sharp increase during 2017.

Analysis from Savills has revealed investment in student property will reach £5.3bn by the end of 2017, up 17% increase on 2016. Brexit may have intensified appetite for UK student housing as Savills saw £2.1bn transacted after the referendum, compared to £1.9bn earlier in the year.

The appetite for student housing assets has outgrown the supply of available stock. Of the £4.5bn traded by Savills last year, £1.1bn (25%) involved forward funding developments while £223m (5%) were development sites. Existing stock made up 69% of trades, the lowest proportion on record.

These growth figures are supported by Mistoria Group, which has seen demand for student property in the North West rise by 38% year on year. The largest increase in investment came from Turkey which accounted for 20% of the growth, followed by UAE (9%) and Hong Kong (5%).

Mish Liyanage, Managing Director of The Mistoria Group comments: “We have seen a large increase in international investors’ appetite for student accommodation. They are attracted to the UK because of the relatively low-cost student property on offer and the excellent net yields that range between 12% and 15% in the North West. Investors have a wide choice of accommodation to chose from, such as HMOs to purpose-built accommodation.

There is a general shortage of student accommodation across the UK and especially in university cities such as Liverpool and Plymouth. In Liverpool, there are now 21,700 PBSA units, meaning 2.1 students for each unit. With supply of a further 12,400 units either under construction or with planning permission, this ratio just 1.4.

Liverpool is a great university city to invest in. An HMO property with a superior spec can deliver investors an average gross rental yield of 13%, leveraged return on investment of 35% plus, before any charges and voids. A three bed HMO which houses three students, can be bought from £120,000 upwards in Liverpool. The return on investment is very attractive too, with 13% (8% cash rental and 5% capital growth). The gross rent on the property will exceed £1,235 pcm, as each room is rented out.”

This story was featured in Property Reporter on 1st December 2017