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How to manage student stress & accommodation anxiety

Posted by Honor Wellington in

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University life is full of new experiences and opportunities. For many, one of the most exciting adventures will be living away from home. However, navigating student accommodation and new living situations can be challenging. To help you, we're exploring seven causes of student stress when it comes to accommodation and how to tackle them head-on to make your university housing experience as stress-free as possible.

Stress 101: your uni housing cheat sheet

Managing student stress when living away from home

Experiencing stress or anxiety at university is normal. You've been thrust into a completely new environment and are taking your first steps into adulthood. In particular, student accommodation can be a source of uncertainty. How can you find the right housemates? How do you find a second-year house? Don't worry. We've packed this blog with practical tips, tricks and advice to help you tackle student stress, navigate your accommodation search with ease, and feel comfortable in your new student home, wherever it may be.

Stress 101: your uni housing cheat sheet

Independent living

For many students, university is your first time living away from home. You might suddenly feel overwhelmed by the responsibilities of adult life, like cooking, cleaning and grocery shopping. There's nothing to be embarrassed about. Everyone has to learn how to do these things independently at some point.

If you're struggling to know where to start, look online for resources. There are tons of student-tailored, budget-friendly recipes on the Internet to give you some meal inspiration. Why not take a look at BBC Good Food's student section? Alternatively, if the grime of communal living is getting you down, take a look at the cleaning guides on sites like Good Housekeeping for some useful tips and tricks. You could also start a cleaning rota with your housemates to make sure you're all sharing the burden.

Stress 101: your uni housing cheat sheet


Being away from home can be difficult, especially if you've never done it before. University can feel lonely, but it's important to remember that you're never alone. Make sure you aren't isolating yourself. Reach out to your friends if you're feeling low, and don't be afraid to call or visit home if you need to. If you find yourself really struggling, seek help. Your university will have counselling services available, or you can contact dedicated mental health services like Student Minds or Samaritans.

Stress 101: your uni housing cheat sheet

Finding housemates

Choosing who to live with can be one of the greatest triggers of student stress. It's all too easy to feel like everyone has already found their housemates, and you're being left behind. Just remember, there's always someone else in the same boat. It's easier to find like-minded living companions than you might think.

If you haven't already, start putting some feelers out. Joining societies and striking up conversations with people on your course is a great way to meet new friends and find people with similar interests. You never know - they might be looking for a housemate! Alternatively, social media is a brilliant resource for housemate hunting. Follow your university's social media pages and join relevant student and accommodation groups. There are always people advertising for housemates, or you can create your own posts to start a dialogue.

Stress 101: your uni housing cheat sheet


Money can be a major anxiety, particularly as the cost of living rises. To stay on top of your finances, it's a good idea to make a budget and track your spending. You can download free budget templates from UCAS to help. If you're struggling with money, look for simple ways to save. For instance, you could walk or cycle into university rather than taking public transport. And do you really need that takeaway when you've got dinner in the fridge? You could even pick up a part-time job to earn some extra cash. A good place to start is talking to your university Student Union about any availabilities.

We know that the cost of accommodation can be a significant pressure on your finances. It can be particularly difficult when you want to live with friends who have a higher budget than you. A great way around this is dividing your rent proportionally according to the size of your bedrooms. That way, the rent is fairer for all of you, and you can live together without breaking the bank.

Stress 101: your uni housing cheat sheet

Finding the right place to live

When first looking for accommodation, it can feel impossible to narrow down your search and find a place that meets all your needs. Organisation is key here. Make a list of preferences, including your desired price, neighbourhood, group size and accommodation type. Then, use a platform like to gain insights into available properties and find an accommodation that suits you.

Stress 101: your uni housing cheat sheet

Shortage of beds

It can seem like everyone sorts their accommodation for the next academic year extremely quickly. If you're still looking in Spring term, you might be concerned about the more limited number of options available. Don't panic. There are still lots of options still available to you. Our advice is to be flexible. Consider splitting your group or adding additional housemates to widen your property search dependent on the most common number of beds in your area. If you need further insights into this, you can find them on Ultimately, remember to be patient. Just keep looking, and you will find the right place.

Stress 101: your uni housing cheat sheet

Setting up bills

Many students have never been responsible for setting up and managing their own utility bills before. It can be challenging to know where to start, especially as energy prices soar.

To start off, you could use a comparison website like Money Supermarket to assess your options and find the best deals. Once set up, using a bill-splitting service like Split The Bills helps to divide the costs between you and your housemates without hassle. And, of course, if that seems too overwhelming, you could consider a tenancy with bills already included so you only need to worry about making one payment directly to your landlord.

Simplify your search with StuRents

Living independently is one of the most exciting parts of university, but undeniably also one of the greatest sources of student stress. Managing this student stress is essential. If you want to take the anxiety out of your next house hunt, explore today to streamline your search.

Download your Stress 101 Cheatsheet.