Frequently asked questions
Bristol is my insurance choice, when can I apply for accommodation?
You can only apply when you have accepted a Conditional Firm or Unconditional Firm offer to study at Bristol.
Am I guaranteed an offer of University-allocated accommodation?
The University guarantees an offer of accommodation for the first year of study to all UK, EU and International undergraduates who apply for accommodation by 31 July 2017, providing that they meet the conditions of the accommodation guarantee.
We may make you an offer for a room that is not in one of our advertised residences. Occasionally we need to offer temporary accommodation or a place in a room shared with another student.
Applicants who do not meet the guarantee can still apply for accommodation, but are not guaranteed an offer. Please visit our non-guaranteed page for further information.
How can I make sure I get one of my preferred residences?
We cannot guarantee an offer of your preferred residence. However, the residence you choose will take priority over the type of room you choose.
In 2015, 86 per cent of students were allocated one of their preferences. It is helpful to look at our applications for each residence in 2015 (PDF, 123KB) to see the ratio of applications to places. You are more likely to get the offer you want if you select at least one residence that has not previously been oversubscribed.
What should I put in my personal statement?
Personal statements are only looked at after your residence is allocated. They are used to try to match you with suitable flatmates. Therefore, you should tell us about your lifestyle and character, for example: do you like a quiet life? Are you very sociable and hoping to have lots of friends round? What are your interests? Can you live with other peoples' mess or do you prefer things clean and tidy?
How can I change my preferences, or something else, in my application?
Please contact us with your name, student/UCAS number and full details of the changes you want to make.
I want to share a room with a friend, how do I tell you about this?
Please give the name and student number of the student you wish to share with in the notes section of your application. They must do the same with your details in their application.
Please note: we cannot guarantee to meet your sharing preferences.
I won't be able to access the internet over the summer, what can I do?
A parent or guardian can apply on your behalf as long as you have given them your consent to do so, and they have your name, date of birth and University of Bristol student number.
Make sure they have all the information they need - including your list of preferred residences - before you leave.
I will be under 18 when I start at Bristol, will this affect my accommodation?
Students who will be under 18 when their studies start can apply for any of our undergraduate residences, apart from New Bridewell.
I have a disability, health need or other special requirement for my accommodation
Put details of your disability or ill-health, special requirements and anything you need in your accommodation, in the space provided on your online application form. We will contact you for further details. Our disability and health section provides examples of the information we may need.
Can I apply for accommodation if I am intercalating at Bristol?
Intercalating students are guaranteed an offer of accommodation subject to the normal conditions of our accommodation guarantee. You will be able to apply online from 1 June 2017, the form you will use will be separate from our main undergraduate application and can be found on our intercalating page.
What options do you have for mature students?
Mature students can apply for any of our undergraduate residences. If you would prefer to live with other mature students you can apply for Orchard Heights, Favell House, Winkwork House, Hiatt Baker catered and Hiatt Baker self-catered which will have flats exclusive to mature students.
If you are 21-years-old or over and wish to share with other mature students, you should indicate this on the accommodation application form and select from these residences as your preferences.
What does alcohol-free flats available mean?
The University offers some alcohol-free flats to undergraduates in a small number of our residences. When living in an alcohol-free accommodation you, or your guests, are not permitted to drink alcohol within the flat. However, you can store alcohol in your room and drink alcohol outside the flat.
What does single-sex flats available mean?
The University offers single-sex accommodation in a number of its residences. Sometimes students in a residence will be housed in single-sex flats or in rooms on single-sex corridors.
Students living in single-sex accommodation can have visitors or guests of the opposite gender in their accommodation. University staff or contractors of either gender may enter the accommodation from time to time; you will be given notice of this in advance. Over 90 per cent of students who apply for single-sex accommodation are international, therefore most of our single-sex flats will consist entirely of international students.
Can catered halls cater for specialist diets or food allergies?
Residences and rooms
What do your room types mean?
Standard – a single room in a flat sharing a bathroom (shower/toilet/basin) and kitchen with other students.
En suite – a single room with your own bathroom (shower/toilet/basin), in a flat sharing a kitchen with other students.
Studio – a room with either a single or double bed, with your own bathroom (shower/toilet/basin) and small kitchen.
Can I visit the residences?
A limited amount of accommodation will be open on the main University open days. If you are not able to visit during our June and September open days, you can arrange your own visits with the residence you are interested in. Contact the residence directly to arrange this, you can find their contact details on each residence page.
Which residence do you recommend?
We cannot recommend a residence as peoples' needs differ and our residences also vary. We will look at your preferences when we allocate you a residence, and then consider your personal statement when we allocate you a room.
Your website shows a range of rents for the same room types, why is that?
Rents will vary depending on the size and location of the room, location of the residence and the on-site facilities it offers. Find out how our accommodation fees are calculated.
What happens if I'm not happy with the room/residence I get offered?
Offers cannot be changed or cancelled when they are first made. We recommend that you accept your offer of accommodation so that you are guaranteed somewhere to live. If you are not happy with your offer then you can register your interest for a cancelled room by joining the pre-arrival waiting list - if another student does not accept their offer (for example because they're changed their mind about coming to University) and a vacancy becomes available, we will contact you. However, please note the following:
- You must accept your accommodation offer before you can be considered for another room through the cancellation waiting list.
- We can't guarantee that a suitable alternative room will become available.
If you would like to talk to someone about your offer, please contact us.
I've been offered a temporary shared room, what does that mean?
We occasionally need to double up some rooms at the start of term. In 2016 a total of 150 students had to share a room at the very start of term. By the end of November, all students who wanted their own room had been moved. Some of these temporary sharers chose to stay sharing for the rest of the academic year.
If your offer is for a temporary share, please do keep an open mind. These temporary shares are very short-term, can be a great way to meet new people at University and, because you pay a reduced fee while sharing, it's a cost-saving option too.
What happens if I want to cancel my room after I move in?
Later in the academic year, after the waiting list period ends, you can cancel your accommodation but you will remain liable for the rent. No payments will be refunded until a replacement tenant is found. You could be charged a re-letting fee of up to £100.
When a replacement tenant is found you are no longer liable for the rent. The balance of any payment due under the Conditions of Residence, or tenancy, will be refunded. Please see our current student pages for full details of the process.