Written by Yamin, SALC Student Experience Intern

Reading time – 3 minutes


New city, new faces, and a room full of potential—your journey into university halls is like cracking open a book with endless pages of memories waiting to be written.  As you prepare to embark on your exciting journey at the University of Manchester, I want to share some insights on moving into university halls. Having been in your shoes not too long ago, I understand the mix of emotions you might be experiencing. But fear not, because your university experience is about to take off in the most unforgettable way. Let’s dive into some tips and tricks to make your move-in and early days in halls truly memorable.


Review Your Accommodation Inventory

In most university accommodations, you will typically receive a document called an inventory, which outlines the current condition of the apartment or house you are about to move into. This inventory might include details such as existing paintwork conditions, marks left on walls by previous occupants, or even upgrades like newly added kitchen appliances. 

Although this might seem time-consuming, especially when you’re eager to settle in and start your fresh journey, it’s vital to carefully review this inventory at least once. Take a look at each section of the inventory and ensure its accuracy. If you happen to identify any additional damages or missing items, it is wise to take photos and email your landlord to prevent the risk of losing your deposit or to show evidence if your landlord attempts to charge you when the time arrives to move out.


Move in Early for a Smooth Start

In most halls, you will often be allowed to move in a week or two before your lectures actually start. We highly suggest you to get there as early as possible so that you will have enough time to unpack and organise, find your way around the accommodation and city and get to know your flatmates a little better. If you forgot anything, you’ll also have time to go out and buy them before your schedule is packed with classes and activities. So the sooner you arrive, the better chance you have to get everything sorted and settled into your new home.


Another additional tip is, before you arrive at the halls, check what they’re already providing. Most halls already provide some items such as desk lamps, trash cans, and if you’re lucky, even some kitchen utensils such as coffee machines. However, before you buy some items, check out your flatmates and if you both want to save some money, consider buying some kitchen items together and split the costs because definitely there will not be enough space for three coffee machines, four sandwich makers and two rice cookers in a small kitchen. It’s all about making the most of the space and resources together. 


Creating your cosy space

When it comes to settling into your new space, personalization is key. Decorate it in a way that reflects your individuality and creates a comfortable environment where you can thrive academically and personally. As you pack for your move, consider what items are essential and what can be purchased locally. Also it is wise to label your boxes and keep everything for the kitchen, bedroom and bathroom separate. This will make unpacking a lot quicker and easier.

And even though we said not to overpack, you might want to bring a few little ornaments or things from your bedroom. You could bring with you some fairy lights, posters, wall hangings and comfy cushions. Plants can also make a perfect addition to your new home. By adding these small touches, you can quickly make your university accommodation feel like home. Also check out our blog for the comprehensive packing guide for university.


Bonding with flatmates

Moving to halls for the first time and sharing a flat with new people can be nerve-wracking but also transformative for your life. So be open and approachable. Please don’t hesitate to introduce yourself to your flatmates and strike up conversations. One aspect that often brings students together is food. Sharing meals with your flatmates is not only a bonding experience but also an opportunity to exchange cultural insights. Explore local cuisine and try out Manchester’s diverse food scene. And while you’re at it, don’t shy away from experimenting with cooking – you might discover hidden culinary talents!


In addition, establishing ground rules with your flatmates early on can prevent misunderstandings later. A simple conversation about shared responsibilities such as cleaning, quiet hours, and personal space can set a positive tone for your living arrangement. At the same time, be ready to compromise. Sometimes, things do not happen the way you want them to be. When you’re living with others, you will learn to be flexible and willing to compromise. If conflicts do arise, address them calmly and respectfully – effective communication is key to finding solutions.


Prioritise your self-care and well-being

As you step into this exciting new phase of university life, it’s really important to take care of yourself and prioritise your well-being. Keeping yourself healthy both physically and mentally is also essential. Doing physical activities, such as playing sports or going for a walk, is good for your body. Plus, there are relaxation methods such as guided meditation that can help your mind feel better. When you’re active both physically and mentally, you’ll find it easier to handle stress and feel more positive. However, moving into a new place can feel a bit overwhelming sometimes, and that’s okay. The university also provides free counselling services so you can check out their website for the support you may need.


In summary, your journey into university halls is about more than just moving in – it’s about embracing opportunities, building connections, and thriving in a vibrant community. As you navigate this exciting phase, remember to prioritise yourself, cherish every moment, and make the most of your remarkable experience at the University of Manchester. Your adventure has begun – enjoy every chapter!