Frequently Asked Questions

You can find the answers to our most commonly asked questions below. If you can't find the answer you are looking for please contact our Accommodation Team:

By telephone: 0121 232 4131

By email:

In person: staff are available on a drop-in basis at Student Services, 7th Floor, Summer Row building.

Private Accommodation

What happens if I wish to move out?

You are still bound by the obligations of the tenancy agreement, including the payment of rent. However it is normal for tenants who wish to leave part way through a tenancy to find a suitable replacement tenant to take over their tenancy.

What does ‘joint and several’ liability mean?
Where there is more than one tenant signing an agreement, all tenants are ‘jointly and severally’ liable. This means that each tenant can be held responsible for the agreement and paying of rent and not just a share of it. Be sure about the people that you agree to share with as if they fail to pay the rent, you or your guarantor can also be held liable.

Who will maintain/manage the property after I/we have moved in?
It will be the landlord’s responsibility. If it is the landlord then you will need to contact him/her directly if there are any repairs required.

Who will pay for the Utilities, Services and TV Licence?
Normally most bills will be the responsibility of the tenant unless stated otherwise. There will be no Council Tax charge where full time students ONLY occupy a house. There are specific rules governing who is classed as a full-time student and tenants are advised to check this before choosing who to live with. There are companies who specialise in utility bill payments for student accommodation and student lettings in Birmingham such as Glide Utilities and Split-the-Bill. 

Do students pay Council Tax?
No, full time students living in Birmingham are exempt from paying council tax. You will need to request a Council Tax Exemption Form from Student Services and send this to the council.

Will my belongings be covered by the Landlord’s insurance?

No, tenants must take out insurance for their own belongings. However there are insurance companies who specialise in student lettings in Birmingham such as Endsleigh Insurance.

What is a guarantor and why is it necessary?
A guarantor is someone over the age of 18 and in full time employment and is a permanent UK resident who will pay your rent in the event of you being unable to do so. It is necessary because students, generally speaking, are of an age where they are less likely to have an established credit history.

What are my options if I am unable to provide a UK guarantor?
You can either pay the whole of the term’s rent in advance (for the whole year), or you can apply to Housing Hand who will act as your guarantor.

What happen if I sign up for a property with some friends, but decide not to move?
Once you sign the tenancy agreement, you are legally committed to the term of the agreement. So it is vital that you are absolutely sure that you want to move into the property. If you do decide not to move in, then you would need to find a suitable replacement tenant to take your place. Keep us informed of all developments.

I’m struggling to pay my rent. What should I do?
If you would like independent advice on finance or any difficulties you can contact the Student Budget Counsellor in Student Services.

How safe is my area? will give crime statistics for individual postcodes which allow you to obtain comparisons for various areas.

I have a spare room. How do I find a new housemate?
We recommend visiting the UCB Guild Official Freshers’ Group to advertise your room.

Halls of Residence

How do I apply for accommodation?

You can apply online here. If you require a paper-based application form, please contact 0121 232 4131 or email

Can I view the accommodation?

You can view the halls of residence at our open days and applicant days. Alternatively, you can contact the accommodation manager at to arrange another time during office hours to view the halls.

When will I receive an offer of accommodation?

You will receive an offer of accommodation only when you have received your Unconditional Study Offer. This may be from June onwards.

How do I receive my accommodation offer?

All contracts and offers are sent via the email address on your application form. If you require a paper-based offer, please contact , call on 0121 232 4131 or add 'PAPERBASED OFFER' on the specials requests of the application form.

What if I'm on holiday when I receive my offer?

A parent or guardian must contact us in writing at stating your name, date of birth, and date you return to the UK and can complete the documentation. They should make deposit and pre-payments on your behalf.

What is in the room?

Rooms have a bed, mattress, mattress protector, wardrobe, drawers, study desk and chair, curtains and booster heater. You can view our virtual tours here.

Catering or self-catering?

All University halls of residence are self-catering.

Am I guaranteed accommodation?

Although we do not make any guarantees, we offer rooms to first-year applicants and aim to house every new applicant.

Do you have a quiet / mature block?

Yes, we offer a quieter / mature block for applicants that request so. Any applicant over 22 will be allocated one of these rooms unless otherwise stated.

Can I apply for only one semester?

We offer a small number of rooms for one semester only. They are for Erasmus students, students completing their studies in January or for students who are going on, or returning from, a work placement.

Help! I've made a mistake on my application form.

No problem. Just email with your name, date of birth and the information you need amending.

Do you have single-sex flats?

We offer a small number of single-sex female flats. If, however, we have available rooms, these will be used to house late applicants which may change the flat from single to mixed sex.

Do you offer accommodation for couples or students with children?

We have five twin rooms for those with spouses or family members at the University. We do not offer accommodation for students with children.

Can I cancel my accommodation application?

If you no longer require accommodation with us, you can email us at with your name and date of birth, stating a reason you wish to cancel your application.

Can I cancel once I have accepted the accommodation offer?

Once you have accepted your accommodation offer, you have a seven-day cooling off period to cancel, with no charge. If you wish to cancel after this period, you are tied into a legal agreement with the University and your contact will only be cancelled if a new applicant can be found to fill your allocated room.

My offer has been cancelled. What should I do?

If you have been offered accommodation and have not accepted the offer within 14 days by returning all documents and payments, UCB reserve the right to cancel your application. You may reapply and we will do all we can to offer you another room in the accommodation.

Are there payments to be made?

Yes, there are two payments. A refundable security deposit that is held by the University for the term of the contract, and a pre-payment which is an upfront portion of your first term payment to secure your room. The deposit is £200 and the pre-payment is £275. Details of how to pay these is contained within the contracts.

Moving in 

Can I get my room number?

We will not give out room numbers until you collect your keys as rooms are subject to change until this time.

Can I bring a TV and will I need a TV licence?

Yes, you can bring a TV with you. All rooms have aerial points. If you plan to watch live programming through a TV, laptop or tablet, you will need a TV licence.

Are my belongings insured?

All residents receive comprehensive cover for belongings through Endsleigh Insurance, but you may wish to extend cover for items outside your room. Please visit our insurance page for more details.

When can I move into the halls of residence?

Unless you are studying during the summer period on a specialist course, your contract for accommodation will begin at the start of September.

Can I move in before the contract begins?

No. We do not accept early arrivals to the halls of residence unless pre-agreed by the accommodation manager. If you are travelling from abroad, and are booking flights, please ensure you do not arrive before your contracted dates.

Where is the accommodation?

Cambrian Hall is opposite the main Summer Row campus, a short walk away. The Maltings is about a 10-15 minute walk from Summer Row.

What should I bring with me?

Although the rooms and kitchens are furnished, you still need to bring a number of items. See our basic list of items to get you started.

Once you've moved in 

Am I allowed pets?

No. We do not allow any pets, not even goldfish (sorry!). We will however make adjustments if you require an assistance dog.

Can I park my car or motorcycle?

We offer parking at The Maltings for the sole use of Maltings' residents. We do not recommend bringing a vehicle with you as it is not a general requirement to travel around the city centre. However, if you bring a vehicle you will also need to produce your driving licence, proof of ownership and insurance documents. The cost of parking a car at The Maltings is £200 per semester and £50 per semester for a motorcycle. There are no parking facilities at Cambrian Hall.

Can I have guests?

We have a guest policy at the halls of residence. Please see our guest policies for more information.

Can I move rooms?

We will look at any requests to move rooms from October onwards. The decision is at the discretion of the accommodation manager. There may be administrative costs involved in successful requests to move rooms.

When is the reception open?

At The Maltings, the reception office is open weekdays between 9am and 5pm. The reception office at Cambrian Hall is open weekdays 8am till 12pm and 1pm till 5pm.

Can I stay during holiday periods?

The contracts include the festive and Easter holiday periods. You do not need to vacate your room during this time.

Do you offer storage?

No, we do not offer any storage facilities.

What is the Student Accommodation Code?

Many university accommodation buildings are signed up to The Code which was introduced in 2006. The Code has already raised standards of accommodation and aims to continue to enrich the residential experience for students across England and Wales.

Can I vacate the halls?

Once you have accepted the offer of accommodation, you are legally bound by the terms of the agreement. If you wish to leave, withdraw or are withdrawn from your course, you will remain liable for the accommodation costs. Details can be found in the terms and conditions of the contract.

Is the internet included in the costs?

Yes. All residents have access to free wifi at the halls.

Will my room and flat be cleaned?

No, a cleaning service is not included in the costs. Cleaning is the responsibility of the residents of each flat. Charges may be incurred if kitchens and communal areas are not kept to a satisfactory level.

How do I report any problems?

All issues should be reported directly to the reception office at your hall of residence. This should include any maintenance, damages or problems.

Can I store a bicycle?

Yes. Both halls have space to store bicycles at no cost. Just remember to bring a lock. Bicycles cannot be stored within the flats or stairwells.

Where does my post go?

Letters will be delivered to your designated post box. Any other deliveries will be held in the reception office. You will need to show ID and sign for anything of this nature.

Is there a laundry service?

Both sites have laundry facilities provided by Circuit Laundry Systems. Cards will be given at key collection to use with the washing machines and dryers.

When payments are due 

Payment examples are set out in the application form under the section ‘Payment Preferences’. These will vary as to your student status.