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Student Accommodation Liverpool – Everything you need to know

Liverpool Student Accommodation

If your looking for student accommodation in Liverpool or just planning to study in Liverpool, then in this guide we’ll cover everything you need to know about studying in Liverpool and finding student accommodation in Liverpool

With a student population of roughly 60,000 young men and women enrolled in five different universities and colleges – The University of Liverpool (UoL), City of Liverpool College, Liverpool Hope University, Liverpool John Moores University, and The Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts – the Merseyside Metropolitan is a non-stop student party. It’s the home of two giant Premier League Clubs, one of them the recent champions, and their massive stadiums – Anfield and Goodison. Of course, it is also world-renowned as being the birthplace of modern popular culture, thanks to the greatest band of all time, Atomic Kitten.

It’s the fifth biggest city in the UK, boasting dizzying amounts of museums, art galleries, and historical sites – including, The Atomic Kitten Beatles Story Exhibition, The Museum of Liverpool, The British Music Experience, and The World Museum. The whole town is peppered with great bars and restaurants for all your student needs- both cheap pints and fancy cocktails – many of which are located along the riotous Matthew Street. When you need a rest from it all you can sit and watch the glimmering waters at the Royal Albert Docks or chill and have a picnic at the much-loved Sefton Park. Of course, you’ll probably cover all this in your first week there.

In this guide, you will find all you need to know about Liverpool student accommodation – both student halls and student houses. We will also cover living costs, transport links, and some essential Liverpool nightlife.

Student Accommodation In Liverpool?

Liverpool students have given good reviews to a number of halls across Liverpool, but of the forty or so options available, particularly good things have been said about St. Lukes View, Horizon Heights, Albert Court, St. Andrew’s Gardens student halls.

The three below – Vine Court, Fontenoy Apartments, and Grand Central – are our pick of the best of the best. Of course, what’s best for you will depend on your personal circumstances and needs.

Vine Court

Vine Court is simple and modern and a better-than-average option for undergrads. There is a choice of both catered or self-catered. The catered option provides cooked breakfast, a three-course dinner and some all-day offerings too.

It’s in and amongst the University of Liverpool buildings, so you’re unlikely to be too late to your lectures. There’s also a handy Tesco Express just across the road – great for all your pre-drink needs.

Rooms start at £171 per week.

Fontenoy Apartments

This is brand-new, premium, beautifully designed accommodation. There’s a flat-screen 32” TV standard in every room, a cinema room, and a gym – so we need not list the amenities that would come in student halls without these luxuries.

It’s also pretty central, with lots of bars close by, given it’s just ten minutes from Mathew Street. The most basic room there is a full studio for £154 per person per week. Not a bad option if you’re a postgrad with scholarship funding.

Grand Central

Grand Central is in a top-notch city-centre location: bang in the middle of the action, adjacent to Liverpool Lime Street station. From here you can walk to The University of Liverpool campus in ten minutes and LMJU in just eight. It’s also surrounded by supermarkets, shops and bars and pretty much everything you could expect from being so central.

They have options ranging from shared bathroom to en-suite to full-on studio apartments at a range of prices. The cheapest option is a shared bathroom flat for £101 per week, but you could have a very comfortable self-contained studio for £149. Of course, all the single rooms come with a shared kitchen area at the dispense of the three to six people on your floor.

It’s pretty modern in its furnishing and design for the most part, and features a common room with all the essentials – seating, vending machines, ping pong and pool.

These halls are mostly for undergraduates. Take heed, postgrads, you don’t want to be typing your dissertation surrounded by a bunch of rowdy freshers.

How Much Will Student Accommodation in Liverpool Cost?

On average, student accommodation Liverpool costs £152 per week. For an en-suite, it’s £129 per week and
for Studios Apartments, £181 per week.

Most properties will permit payment in instalments, rather than a lump sum for the year. This will typically
require you to have a guarantor – a UK-based adult who could pay this for you.

Can I Share Accommodation With A Friend Or Partner?

Yep, many halls of residence have options for dual occupancy’. Whilst many have this option for only a
little extra, or for free, other halls charge per person, so watch out for that catch.

What Are The Best Areas For Renting A Student House in Liverpool?

The Baltic Triangle

Bursting with both modern culture and a rich history, The Baltic Triangle is well-established as the’ place for young, cool, creative people in Liverpool. Just a short walk outside the city centre, it’s packed with shops, bars, restaurants and venues of all kinds. Many of the buildings are refurbished 18th-century warehouses that make for hipster havens and cavernous club venues. Despite all this, students of all budgets pitch their tents here, as the rent is pretty affordable. Indeed, the students certainly add to the culture here – for every bougie coffee shop there’s incredible street-art and a skate park to boot.

City Centre

Not too much needs to be said about this. A fair few students enjoy living in the centre and having everything on their doorstep – both amenities and university buildings. It’s obviously very well connected to other areas via bus routes and close to the train station. The stand-out Bold Street has rows of bars, restaurants and all the entertainment you could imagine. Naturally, the rent prices are the highest in the city, but if you can make it work, why not?

Wavertree

Boasting bars with £1 pint nights, tons of student discounts, and a takeaway on every corner with cracking deals, Wavertree is the archetypical student land. It is also home to Smithdown Road, an area known for its infamous pub crawl and the yearly Smithdown Road Festival, where local bars host almost hundreds of bands. Here, just south of the city centre, you will find an Aldi and an ASDA for your cheap groceries. The rent is also very student-friendly, and you will be surrounded by other students living here too. A twenty minute bus will take you to most Uni buildings and central Liverpool.

Kensington

Home to Paul McCartney Way, Ringo Starr Drive and John Lennon Drive, Kensington is where The Beatles first began to record their music together. Who wouldn’t want one of those addresses? Despite its historical and cultural significance, it remains a down-to-earth inner-city area with twelve percent of its population as students. Given its proximity to the Knowledge Quarter, it’s a pretty convenient place to hang your hat if you’re a student of one of the universities. There’s sufficient supermarkets, local shops and newsagents and the rent is one of the cheapest in Liverpool. It’s also home to the Victorian Newsham Park which was originally intended to be a model of Manhattan’s Central Park. Not long ago the lakes were closed due to toxic blue algae, but that’s just part of its charm.

What’s The Best Way to Get Around Liverpool?

Rail

Mersey rail trains run throughout the day across 68 stations in and around Liverpool. With 4 city centre underground stations, it’s pretty easy to nip across the centre.

A term-time pass’ will give you unlimited travel during term time only from £115.90. Purchase here.

Bike

A favourite of Liverpool’s student populace, the bike is the go-to option for many due to its almost non-existent running cost, and the city’s compact nature and regular bike lanes.

Bus

It’s environmentally friendly, convenient, relatively cheap and riding the 699 is a student rite of passage. There are two main city centre bus terminals: Queen Square and Liverpool ONE.

If you’re a UoL student, you can get an Arriva bus pass that’ll last you the full academic year for only £320 that will permit you unlimited travel on any of their busses. A single will cost you about £1.80.

Taxi

There’s always Uber, but failing that there’s rarely a shortage of taxis in the area. A major taxi rank can be found just outside of Liverpool Lime Street Station. Of course, you can always give Com Cabs a ring to pre-book your ride to the club.

How Much Does Student Life in Liverpool Cost?

You will need between £8,500 and £10,500 per academic year for your daily living expenses including accommodation, food and local travel. This comes to about £900 per month – making it arguably the cheapest of the major cities for student life.

And this is what you’re getting for your money (at the cost of that 9 AM lecture of course):

What are the Best Bars and Clubs in Liverpool?

The Cavern – A tourist hotspot for being one of the starting venues of The Beatles, but well worth the odd
visit.

The Blue Angel aka The Raz – The old jazz and rock venue has been a student cesspit since long before you
were born. An unavoidable night out as a student.

The Bierkeller – A staple venue for having one too many pints. Expect table dancing, live music, and leaving
with a beer-stained shirt.

Popworld – The corny spot your less cool friends will inevitably drag you to, but you secretly enjoy.

ArCains – An arcade combined with a bar. A really novel, fun night out with great fast food and craft beers,
located in the heart of The Baltic Triangle.

Modo – Double vodka mixer for £3.50. Huge garden smoking area. Big TVs for Liverpool and Everton
games.

Salt Dog Slims – A cosy, tastefully dilapidated Americana-style bar with a pool table. They serve quality
beer, cocktails, and great American night-out food. A secret gem of a party bar.

I’m sure by now you’re convinced that you’ve chosen a great city for university. It’s cheap, big, and rich in
culture. There’s plenty of brilliant places to call your student home Liverpool. Now just get some Wayne
Rooney interviews up on YouTube so you can practice deciphering that scouse accent and you’re all set to
go.

Find & Advertise Student Accommodation

Still looking for a student property? Search through our wide range of student accommodation and find great student diggz in your town or city. Alternatively, if you have a place your looking to rent out, place a free advert and get your student property filled quickly. Both landlords and students can place free adverts!

 

Student TV Licence – Everything you need to know about UK TV Licence

 

Student TV Licence

If you’re a student who’s wondering about whether they need a TV Licence, how much it costs and, of course, if it’s possible to  get away without buying one, you’ve come to the right place. Here you will find all the information you need, including the much-coveted Student TV Licence loophole.

 

The Questions We’ll be Answering:

Let’s get started!

Do Students Have to Buy a TV Licence?

Unfortunately, yes, there are no exemptions for students. There’s no free Student TV Licence, University TV Licence, nor a student discount available on UNiDAYS.

You can enjoy your student bank account, 16-25 Railcard, and your discounts at literally every high street and online store, but annoyingly, The TV Licence is, if you choose to buy one, another cost on your student bills list.

Legally your supposed to have a TV Licence When:

  • Watching or recording programmes shown live on TV on any channel
  • Watching or streaming programmes live on any platform – including but not limited to All 4, ITV Hub, Amazon Prime Video, Now TV, Sky Go and YouTube
  • Using iPlayer at all – all features including live, catch up and on-demand

You may have noticed that you don’t need a licence for any on-demand viewing, on any platform, except BBC iPlayer. So you can binge away on any non-BBC content as long as it’s not live.

How Much Does a TV Licence Cost?

It currently costs £159 per year for a colour TV Licence – or if you’re totally broke, or an insufferable hipster, you can pay £53.50 for a black and white licence. This is seriously an option. Apparently, there are still around 6000 black and white licences active in the UK.

If you suffer from blindness or have severely impaired eyesight, you only have to pay a concession price of £79.50, which makes a lot of sense. Although instead of getting reduced fees, maybe you should be paying more for the pleasure of never having to properly watch an episode of The Only Way is Essex and view a never ending barrage of trout-pouts!

Remember that you have to renew it 12 months from the date you bought it.

I know, student bills suck, but at least this one can be split between all your housemates. You can also pay in quarterly fees to break up the cost. There is, however, a £5 surcharge for doing this.

Do you need a TV Licence if you’re renting a Student Spare Room or sharing a Student Home?

Basically, you need one licence per tenancy agreement.

So, if you live in a shared student home, with each housemates names on one tenancy agreement, you only need one licence to cover the whole property.

If you live in a shared home or rent a spare student room in a property, with your own tenancy agreement, you’ll need your own TV licence. This also applies to lodgers or anyone paying rent separately from others in the property.

Do I need a TV Licence if I’m in Student Halls?

No – if your parents home (or whatever your out-of-term address is) has a TV Licence, then you are covered by them as long as you don’t use devices powered directly from the mains or connected to an aerial. So portable devices and laptops are covered.

Your student halls will likely have a licence that covers common rooms and other communal areas but if
you want to watch The Chase in your room instead of going to lectures, and your out-of-term address
doesn’t have a licence, you’ll need to buy one yourself.

Do I need a TV Licence to watch British on-demand TV like BBC iPlayer and All 4?

When it comes to on-demand content: yes for iPlayer and no for others. Live content needs a licence for all platforms, iPlayer needs a licence for live or on-demand or any other use.

Do I need a TV Licence if I watch Netflix?

No, you do not need a TV Licence for any use of Netflix since none of it is live. You only need a stepbrother
or friend to pay your subscription, a good memory for passwords and a shameless attitude.

Compare the best digital TV and streaming service and find a great deal

Can Students Use a TV Licence Loophole?

Let’s face it, when you clicked on this article you immediately scrolled to this question. I don’t blame you –
Doctor Who has really gone downhill, Eastenders has always been garbage and on top of all that you’re a bit skint.

Most of us don’t want or enjoy paying for a TV licence and at the end of the day it’s a personal decision.

What we would suggest is, if you value listening to tunes on BBC Radio without annoying adverts, watching David Attenborough continue to save the planet well into his 90s, and enjoy watching Match of The Day without the need advert interruptions, then consider contributing.

If you do indeed not care for any BBC Television or Radio shows, you can just stick to on-demand content on other platforms. This way, your not legally required to purchase a licence. Remember though, that even on-demand content on BBC iPlayer requires a licence.

If you need to watch live TV without a licence here’s a nice student TV loophole or two:

  1. Unplug your TV: If your TV isn’t plugged into the mains or an aerial socket, there’s absolutely no way to prove you were using it to watch any programmes. Just make sure you unplug it every time you’re not using it.
  2. If your out-of-term address is covered by a TV license, you can watch TV on any portable device that isn’t powered directly by the mains. So if you only use your laptops and phones in your student house, you’ll be just fine.
  3. Download iPlayer shows in places that are covered by a licence, and then go home and watch them offline. Untraceable.

Once in a while, they may send an inspector round to have a look at your house.

Can They Detect If I have a TV Licence?

Here’s the real TV Licence loophole: they (mostly) can’t. Of course, they have a database of all addresses who haven’t bought a licence, but they have no idea whether or not those addresses are breaking the law or not.

They likely send a letter every so often to all properties on that database and make the letter look scary and foreboding even though they don’t actually know if you watch TV or not.

Can a TV Licence Officer Enter Your Home?

No, they can’t enter without a police-issued warrant. If an officer happens to knock on your door, they have no legal right to enter your home and your not obligated to answer any of their questions. We’ve heard reports of some officers using intimidation and bullying tactics to force there way into peoples homes.

We would suggest simply telling any officer politely who may knock on your door, that you don’t watch any TV, thanks them for their time and close the door. Normally at that point they will leave, although may suggest they will get a warrant which they very rarely do.

If they persist in knocking, simply pop your head out the window and inform them you know your legal rights and responsibilities and will report them if they continue on

Be mindful though, if an inspector came to your door and the sound of canned laughter was blaring in the background and they can see your TV bright as day through the window and you were holding the remote control in your hand and wearing an ‘I Own A TV’ t-shirt and you denied him entry and said you don’t have a TV and then pissed on his shoes… then they’d probably have grounds to get a warrant to search your house. But otherwise, unless they somehow had very good evidence you were watching TV.

What is the Punishment for Getting Caught Without a TV Licence?

If you’re one of the unlucky ones (and didn’t follow our advice above) then you risk prosecution and a fine of up to
£1,000, plus any costs or compensation you are asked to pay and the cost of the licence. You won’t go
to prison, though, unless you persistently refuse to pay the fine, or did actually urinate in the TV Licence guys shoes.

Can Students get a TV Licence Refund?

Yes. You can request a refund if you won’t need your licence before it expires, and you have at least one full month before the expiry date.

You can apply for your refund here.

To receive a refund, you just need to meet the criteria in the checklist and provide the required evidence. You also need to apply two weeks in advance of the date you want it to stop. If you’re applying for a refund for a licence that has already expired, you can apply if it expired less than two years ago.

What Happens To My TV Licence If I’m Moving Properties?

If you’re moving student accommodation or home, you can just update your address online here and that will automatically transfer your licence over to your new student property.

If you’re moving to a student home that already has a TV Licence, you can either leave it or get a refund for the
months you will not be using it. See above for more info on refunds.

Conclusion

So there you have it. Everything a student could wish to know about TV Licencing regulations. Now you
can get back to your binging, safe in the knowledge that you’re not going to prison just yet.

Check out some our other articles on student bills and other ways to save money

Ultimate Guide to Student Bills

Best Student Broadband Deals

Choosing Student Accommodation Checklist

Find & Advertise Student Accommodation

Still looking for a student property? Search through our wide range of student accommodation and find great student diggz in your town or city. Alternatively, if you have a place your looking to rent out, place a free advert and get your student property filled quickly. Both landlords and students can place free adverts!

Cheap Student Bills – 10 Ways to Save Money On Energy Bills

 Cheap Student Bills

One of the biggest drains on many students homes is the energy bills. Apparently, an average-sized UK student household will spend around £90 a month on gas and electricity. In this part of our student bill series, we offer some quick and painless ways to make the dream of cheap student bills an actual reality.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines ‘Student’ as ‘One who is often broke!‘. Even if you don’t feel all that broke, rest assured, if you’re a UK university student, then, you’re probably broke!

By the time we’re done with university, most of us anyway, will have a debt of around £50k in loans to pay back and yet somehow the ‘maintenance loan’ we receive from Student Finance is only enough to maintain our poverty.

It could be argued, that we could all spend less money on nights out, taxis, microwave meals and streaming subscriptions – but then, what would be the point in going to uni in the first place?

As much as our energy bills can drain our bank account, there are certain things we can do and ways to manage that drain which would significantly cut down the overall costs. Sound like something you’d like to learn more about? Then read on for student money saving tips, so hot your radiator will look embarrassed!

Ten Tips For Cheap Student Bills

 

Tip #0: Use Your Common Sense

This isn’t really a ‘hot tip’ as such, but some of you may need to hear these:

  • Don’t set your thermostat to 24C and then sit in your underwear when you could have just put a hoodie
    on.
  • Don’t leave windows wide open (especially when you go out!)
  • Don’t leave the lights on in rooms you aren’t using.
  • Turn off plug switches for any appliances you’re not using.
  • Turn the boiler off when not at home, even if it’s just for a few hours.
  • Don’t block your radiators with furniture or clothing.
  • Take showers instead of baths as they use less heat as well as water.

If these tips and ideas are new and interesting to you, then prepare to have your mind blown with the tips which follow… let’s continue!

Tip #1: Get Your Bills Included in the Rent

If you haven’t yet accepted a tenancy agreement for the academic year, try to look for student accommodation where the landlord includes the energy bills as part of the rent, in a cheap student bills package.

Besides simplifying your outgoing costs and preventing arguments amongst your flatmates, it means you can blast the radiator and leave the lights on all day and not have to worry about anything – except, of course, the poor polar bears.

The rest of the utilities, like your water usage will also likely be included. Just make sure you inspect the contract carefully for any usage limits, so there’s no nasty surprises when the fridge turns off halfway through the month.

Spare student rooms in a private household can be a great option, as bills are usually bundled with the rent.

If included bills isn’t on the cards, asking for the energy-rating of the property, which accounts for the quality of radiators, windows and insulation – is a smart consideration to make before deciding to rent somewhere. The range is large: from A to G; so make sure you’re somewhere near the start of the alphabet at least.

Tip #2: Shop Around for the Best Deals

If you end up having to pay and manage your own energy bills, don’t fret, there are still savings to be had if you’re willing to put the work in and do some research.

Sadly, an entire third of the country’s household population have never switched energy providers. Half haven’t switched in the last three years. Those households are missing out on potential savings of £320 per year.

Use comparison sites like MoneySupermarket to compare prices and keep those profit-hungry energy monoliths in check! This is basically activism, and woke, activist students are far more successful on Tinder.

— Learn more about comparing energy providers and finding the best deals

Tip #3: Take Your Own Meter Readings & Avoid Estimates

In addition to never checking if they’re even getting a good deal from their provider, on their price per unit of gas and electricity, most households also let their provider estimate their usage. This means the provider assumes your usage based on factors such as past usage, local weather and building insulation and then charges you based on that.

Your student accommodation could have been empty and unused for days but the energy provider would assume you were using heating, etc. as usual. You could be following all the common sense tips – diligently switching off lights and appliances – and they may well be assuming usage based on past care-free student tenants.

This is obviously less than ideal. If your unsure how to take a meter reading or not even sure where your utility meters are  located, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!

How to take an Electric Meter Reading

How to take a Gas Meter Reading

Calculating your own energy usage may look lame, but it’s the holy grail of cheap student bills.

Tip #4: Bleed Your Radiators

Ensure radiators are bled so that they can run more efficiently. Bleeding means releasing the air that gets stuck in the system. Doing this requires a radiator key which you can buy online for less than a quid. This makes a big difference to any student money saving goals you have, also, your dad would be proud.

To get the gist of how to do it, you can watch this handy tutorial by the lovely Tony:

Tip #5: Want Cheap Student Bills? Use a Radfan!

The Radfan is a simple product that you mount on your radiator. It can be set up in 30 seconds and then runs itself by turning itself on when the radiator is hot, and off when it’s cold. It’s designed to improve the flow of convected heat around the room, thus reducing the amount of energy you need to pump into your radiator to heat your student home. They’re also lab-tested, and government funded which is pretty rad.

Find out more about them and take a look here to find a great deal.

Bonus Tip: They only fit onto the rectangular, metal, water-filled, classic-style radiators, so be sure to check before you order one.

Tip #6: Use Energy-efficient Electrical Appliances & Your
Electrical Appliances Energy-efficiently

  • Putting your appliances like your TV and Playstation on timer plugs will mean you don’t have to remember to switch them off.
  • Use your dishwasher, if you have one, as it apparently uses less energy than handwashing. Just make sure it’s full everytime.
  • If you have a washing machine, only use it when it’s loaded to capacity – coordinate with your housemates and have a laundry day together. Wash at 30?C, it works just fine with most detergents these days.
  • Don’t use a tumble-dryer as they’re horribly energy inefficient – a clothes rack will do. Swap out all your lightbulbs for energy-efficient versions. They’re a little pricier upfront, but last far longer, are cheaper to run and will save you loads of cash over their lifetime.
  • If your radiators are old-style electric heaters, consider asking your student landlord to update them. They use far more energy efficient than modern ones and they decrease the value of the property because they lower the overall energy rating – so it’s a win-win for you and your landlord.

Tip #7: Use Blankets, Hot-water bottles, and Cute Microwavable
Teddy Bears

Of course, you should always wrap up warm even when inside, so you don’t have to turn the thermostat up higher than it needs to be. But have you considered other cosy alternatives? Hot-water bottles are great, using one is like having a bath on the couch. Electric blankets may be even more energy-efficient. I am also unashamed to admit that I have a green dinosaur called Debra that I heat up in the microwave – you can buy these microwavable plushies online or in a store like Ryman’s. Debra smells like lavender too.

Tip #8: Exploit Your University’s Amenities!

The ultimate life-hack to get cheap student bills: make your university pay for them. Taking all of your devices – laptop, phone, tablet, camera, whatever, and charging them at the library is a pro move. Don’t feel guilty, you’re paying like £9000 a year, surely some of that is for some free, juicy electricity. Plus, it won’t hurt your academic prospects to spend a bit more time in that place now would it?

Hey, you could even take a few power-banks and portable batteries and charge ’em up there too, that way you can take the free, juicy electricity home with you too, it’s win-win. If only there was a way to steal their hot air…

Tip #9: Avoid Pay-as-you-go Energy Plans

Paying ad-hoc may feel cheaper, but just as with all subscription services, signing up for a longer-term contract will save you hundreds in the long run. It requires more admin on the part of the supplier and they pass the burden of that cost onto you – just avoid these altogether.

Final Thoughts

So there you have it, a complete guide to getting cheaper student bills by saving costs on your energy bills. Follow every single one of these tips and the energy companies will be basically paying you. The polar bears will also express their gratitude for your environmental considerations.

Check out some our other articles for both student accommodation and money saving tips:

Best Student Boradband Deals

Best Digital TV Packages

Guide to Student Discount Cards

Find & Advertise Student Accommodation

Still looking for a student property? Search through our wide range of student accommodation and find great student diggz in your town or city. Alternatively, if you have a place your looking to rent out, place a free advert and get your student property filled quickly. Both landlords and students can place free adverts!

 

 

Student Gas Bills – How to take a gas meter reading

Student Gas Bills

Many students who move from student halls into private accommodation, will for the first time, need to take a gas meter reading. Student gas bills can be expensive, especially as most students already have a tight financial budget. To help you avoid any excessive gas bills, in this part of our guide to student bills series, we’ll show you how to take a gas meter reading and how to calculate the cost of your gas usage.

What we’ll be covering:

Why do I need to Submit Meter Readings?

For the most part, gone are the good old days when energy companies would send their agents round, knocking on your door to read your meter. Now, most people let their energy suppliers estimate their usage. These estimates are based on past readings, temperatures, how well insulated your house is and a number of other factors.

But, as you may expect, these estimates’ may not always be so accurate. The smartest thing to do, especially if you’re struggling to stretch your student finance loans far enough to even afford a Maccy’ D’s, is to read your meters yourself and send your supplier your actual usage info. This way, you can be sure you are getting charged accurately for any student utility bills.

Sounds simple, but given the fact you’ve now entered the assault that is adulthood and responsibility, I’m sure you’re aware that there will be a few finer points to cover.

First step: locate your meter.

— Also Learn how to take an electric meter reading 

Where is My Gas Meter?

Most likely, your meter is on the outside of the property near to one of the doors. This makes them accessible for meter reading agents in order that they can easily read them. In more modern houses, the meter is typically found in a cosy little cupboard outside by the front entrance.

The second most common place, it on the inside porch or in a hallway, right near the front door.

Check these two places first as they’re the most common gas meter locations.

Still can’t find it? Got a basement? Check there. Garage? Check there. Cupboard under the stairs? Tell Harry Potter to shift over and have a quick check in there.

Odd Locations

It could be in more odd places though. If your student accommodation was once refurbished or any spare rooms rearranged, a former garage or porch could now be used as bedroom or kitchen. If those changes occurred, at some point in the past, the meter could well be in a random room in the house so look around.

Ran around every room, looked in cupboards and still can’t find it? Check your tenancy agreement. It may state the location in the handbook.

Failing all that, call your student landlord or agent, they should be able to tell you the meters location.

Types of Gas Meters

In student accommodation, and homes in general, there are a variety of gas meter types. To help identify which type of meter has been installed in your student home, here we’ll provide a brief description on each of the gas meter types and explain how you can take a meter reading.

Digital Metric Meter (five numbers to the left of a decimal point or space)

A digital metric meter will have a digital display that shows five numbers and then a decimal point, followed by some more numbers, which may or may not be in red. This is the most modern type of meter.

To read it:

  • From left to right, write down the first five numbers
  • Include any and all zeros
  • Ignore the numbers that come after the decimal point

Imperial Meter (four numbers to the left of any red numbers)

An imperial meter looks slightly older; it isn’t a screen but rather displays, separate black and white square numbers. The latter numbers will be in red and it may have some imperial unit of measurement on it – probably cubed feet.

To read it:

  • From left to right, write down the first four numbers
  • Include any and all zeros
  • Ignore the rest of the numbers in red

Dial Meter

A dial meter will have four or possibly more dials. Each dial will have a pointer indicating towards a number between one and nine. These are the most complex to read, but also, luckily, the least common.

To read it:

  • Read the first four dials from left to right, usually along the bottom row only
  • Ignore dials in red or in a different size to the rest
  • Write down the closest number to each pointer
  • If the pointer rests between two numbers, go with the lower number
  • If the pointer rests between zero and nine, write down nine

Note: Sometimes some of the dials run clockwise and some run counter-clockwise, don’t get cocky (or clocky) and just look at where the pointer points, like when you’re telling the time: just look at the number it’s pointing to.

TOP-TIP If you’re going through all the effort of reading the meter yourself, be sure sure you get it right, you don’t want to end up being charged extra on your student gas bills.

Smart Gas Meter

A swanky digital meter with cool graphics and a large display. Since it reads itself and sends the usage to your supplier, you don’t really need to read it. You can look at it if you’re convinced it’s sending the wrong readings, or if you’re just really really bored.

To read it:

  • There are many unique types but they’re all very simple to navigate and display the necessary figures clearly

There are a few bonuses to having a smart gas meter. You can literally see in real time the gas your property is consuming. This is pretty handy if you’re leaving the house for awhile and want to make sure the boiler and all your appliances are switched off; you can just check to see if the figures have stopped going up. You can also see if an appliance is consuming a disproportionate amount of gas – maybe something is wrong with it.

They are also very eco-friendly and allow you to keep a clear, real-time account of your gas usage. Very useful when it comes to keeping track of your student house bills.

How Do I Calculate My Student Gas Bills?

Your gas usage is typically measured in imperial cubic feet (ft3;) or metric cubic meters (m3;) depending on the type of meter.

The metric meters display part units as decimals, and the imperial meters display part units in red and or after a space. You can just ignore the part units.

Despite being measured in cubit feet; or metric cubic meters;, you’ll likely find you’re billed in kilowatt hours (kWh).

This means that if you want to see if you’re being billed correctly, you have to convert your readings into kWh.

Doing this requires taken a fair amount of  calculations. There are online Gas Bill Converters that will do this for you. So if your feeling lazy skip ahead and will outline how to use the online gas conversions.

If your a bit of a nerd though or just an aspiring scientist, who’s keen to perform your own calculations, here’s a quick run-through.

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Step One:

Firstly you’ll need to subtract your last meter reading from your current one to figure out how much gas you’ve used in that billing period. You’ll need your current and previous gas bills in front of you and a calculator for accuracy.

Step Two – only if you have an imperial meter:

If your meter is in imperial, you need to convert to metric. This is the conversion factor: 100 ft3; = 2.83 m3; . Your meter measures in hundred-units of cubic feet. If the meter says you’ve used 1 unit, you’ve actually used 100 ft3;. So just multiply your imperial meter reading by 2.83.

Step Three:

Multiply the figure by the calorific value of the gas. This give an indication about the quality of the gas used. The exact value will be on your bill. It should be between 38 and 41 megajoules per cubic meter.

Step Four:

Multiply that figure by 1.02264. This accounts for temperature and pressure and something about expansion of the gas due to heat, but best not to stress on the details and instead just do it!

Step Five:

Convert to kilowatt hours. To do this, divide your figure by 3.6.

Final Step:

Now you have successfully converted to kWh and taken everything you need to into account, you just need to work out what the final cost of the bill should be.

To do this multiply by the price per unit your energy supplier charges you, which will be on the bill. Once all complete, you will now have the total cost of the bill in kWh based on your own meter readings.

Gas Bill Calculators

As we mentioned before, with a quick google you can find many reliable, free Gas Bill Converters that will save you the work. In order to use these, you just need to type in your meter readings and the price per unit of gas that you pay.

The calorific value’ and conversion factor’ don’t vary that much so you can go with what ever is suggested. If you want to be more accurate, find these figures on your bill and type those in.

Once you’ve have the final figure, you can check and see if this matches up with what your energy company is charging you. If you’re being overcharged, call them up and explain that you believe there’s been an overcharge on your student gas bill. If you’ve been undercharged, well then, that up to you!

Student Gas Bills Summary

Now that you know everything you need about your student gas bills, from taking find your meter to taking a readying that’s one less thing you need to stress out about! You can now rest assured, that you’re being charged the right amount and you’re on your wat to becoming a fully functioning adult. Now go and treat yourself that Maccy D’s.

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