Finding other accommodation

Many of our students choose to live in private accommodation for some or all of their time in Oxford. There is plenty of private accommodation in the local area for students to rent.

The basics

There are lots of resources available to help you find the right property for you.

Cyclist silhouetted in front of houses

What to expect

We recommend that you read the Brookes Union House Hunting guide before you sign any tenancy agreement, and in particular you should be aware of the points listed below. You can find further information on the Brookes Union advice webpage.

  • We recommend that you view the property before you sign a tenancy agreement.
  • To secure private accommodation, you will typically need to pay a booking fee, damage deposit and one month's rent in advance. The standard amount for a deposit is six weeks' rent. Some agencies may charge other fees.
  • Oxford's student housing is one of the most regulated in the country. Houses in multiple occupation (HMO), i.e. houses for groups of students to share, should have their HMO licence displayed in the property. The HMO licence shows that the property complies with quality and safety standards. You can check whether a property in Oxford has an HMO licence on this portal or find more information on the council’s website.
  • Once you sign a contract you will be responsible for the rent on the property for the whole term.
  • If you sign up to an Assured Shorthold Tenancy in the private sector, you will not be able to take up any later offer of university halls accommodation.

  • If you do enter into an Assured Shorthold Tenancy agreement and you pay a tenancy deposit, your landlord is required by law to protect the deposit with a government approved scheme and provide you with evidence of this within 30 days of you paying the funds.
  • Ensure you know who the lead tenant is as the deposit will be refunded to them. Normally this is the student who signs the agreement first.
  • Some properties require a UK guarantor - a person who agrees to cover your rent in the event that you cannot pay it. Housing Hand UK provide a guarantor service for UK and international students.
  • Complete a detailed inventory within the time limit given by your letting agent or landlord. If something is missing in the property now you should let them know otherwise you risk not getting your security deposit back in full.
  • Do not pay money up front before viewing any property that you find online, any advert purporting to be from a landlord or agent who is asking for money before you have had the opportunity to view is likely to be a scam.

Popular areas to live

Most students at Oxford Brookes choose to live in certain popular areas of Oxford. These areas are close to our campuses or within easy reach of them, well-connected by the Brookes bus services and have good availability for finding student housing.

The most popular areas for students based at the Headington Campus are Headington, Cowley, Marston and Wood Farm. These are all in East Oxford. You may also wish to consider living in Headington or Marston if you are based at the Wheatley Campus as you will be able to travel to lectures on the U1 bus service.

If you are studying at our Harcourt Campus you may prefer to live in Botley or Osney, west of the city centre. This will give you easy access to the campus and the city centre.

The areas to the north and south of the city centre, such as Summertown, Jericho and New Hinksey, may also have student housing availability but they won't be connected directly to our campuses by the Brookes buses. You may need to check other transport options if you wanted to live there.

Most Oxford Brookes University students are entitled to free travel on the Brookes bus services and discounted travel on other bus services in Oxford. You can check your eligibility here. 

Student lodgings

Another option for convenient local accommodation is student lodgings. 'Lodgings' refers to local homeowners with rooms available in their homes for others to rent. You may be living with an individual, a couple or a family.

Lodgings can be particularly convenient for students who need a flexible accommodation option, or to stay for less than a year. Lodgings are private and the contract length is settled between you and the landlord, so you can stay for any length of time provided the landlord agrees.

For more information on the legal position of a lodger, please see the Citizen's Advice Bureau website.

Help and advice

Brookes Union Advice Service

  • Information on tenancy agreements
  • Problems with private landlords

UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA)

  • Factors to consider when renting
  • An explanation of costs
  • Immigration checks, including ‘Right to Rent' checks

Contact

Opening hours

  • Monday-Thursday: 9.30am to 4.30pm
  • Friday: 9.30am to 4.00pm
  • Phone lines are open Monday-Friday 9.00am to 4.30pm

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