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Finding Your Own Accommodation

Making your own arrangements

You may prefer to find their own accommodation in Cardiff. It is really important when you arrange your own accommodation to check what is included. We also recommend you read the advantages and disadvantages of living in your own accommodation.


∎ It is more flexible – you do not have to worry about letting a host family know that you are going to be late.

∎ You have the independence and freedom to decide what you want to eat. You can choose your own mealtimes.

∎ You can decide when and for how long the heating is turned on.

∎ You can do the cleaning as and when you choose. There will be no school rules to follow.

∎ You can normally invite as many guests to your accommodation, as late as you like and for as long as you like.


∎ Most privately organised accommodation has a minimum rental of 6 months.

∎ There will be extra bills to pay other than your rent. Gas, Electricity, Water, Council Tax and Internet are unlikely to be included in your rent.

∎ If you choose ‘unfurnished’ accommodation you will have to buy furniture for the accommodation.

∎ If you have a TV, you will also need to buy a TV licence.

∎ You will miss out on opportunities to speak English with your homestay hosts or other peers at our residence accommodation. It could be quite lonely. Our residence has lots of students from all over the world living there, so it a good place to meet people and practise speaking English.


If you make your own arrangements, it is most likely that bills will not be included with your rent – so you will have to pay these bills and your rent. You normally get bills every month or every 3 months.

Council tax

Always check with the landlord how much Council Tax you must pay – it is sometimes a large amount. You can find more information about Council Tax in Cardiff from this link.

TV Licence

If you are living in private accommodation and have a television, then you will need to buy a television licence; for more information click here. The cost per year is £159 in 2023 which can be paid in full or over several months. Payment can be made by direct debit here, by cheque or in cash at any local pay point. TV licensing in the UK is strict and if you don’t have a licence you could be fined a maximum of £1,000.

Other bills

Gas / Electricity Internet / Telephone provision/ Any parking permits you may require etc…


Deposits, fees and rent

Please also remember when you rent your own apartment/house, you will have to pay a deposit and probably also agency fees.

You will also have to pay the rent in advance. Make sure you find out how much it is before you sign a contract. Remember that contracts are legal documents. Be careful. Check everything before you sign. Of course, you can ask the school for advice.


Furnishings (beds/ tables/ chairs etc.) and equipment

It is also important to check whether the accommodation is furnished, and whether other equipment is provided or you will need to bring/use your own.

Furnished means that furniture (such as bed, drawers, etc.) is included

Unfurnished is without any furniture or white goods (i.e. electrical appliances such as a washing-machine, etc.)

Semi-furnished means that white goods will be provided, but other furniture will not be – please check what is and what is not included.


If you are renting “unfurnished” accommodation, you need to bring items such as:

∎ Sofas and/or armchairs

∎ Dining table and chairs

∎ Tableware

∎ Wardrobe/s

∎ Chest of drawers

∎ Bed/s

∎ Fridge/Freezer

∎ Washing machine


You also need to buy:

∎ Cutlery (knives, forks, spoons)

∎ Crockery (cups, plates, dishes etc)

∎ Cooking equipment (such as pots and pans)

∎ Bedding Towels etc…


Scams and dishonest landlords

If you are searching for accommodation independently, please be careful. Some landlords are dishonest. They might try to ‘steal’ your money.

∎ Never give out any bank details, or send money before you have viewed the property and signed a contract.

∎ Do not sign a contract if you are unsure of anything written in it or you are worried about anything it says. You can bring your copy into academy and ask one of the office staff or your teachers for advice.

Useful contacts

*Please note that Celtic English Academy has no formal arrangements with any companies/sites listed on our website, so you must be careful as we are not responsible for the quality of the accommodation or the service provided. Please see below a list of agencies and useful contacts which may help you.

Websites (see below) and newspapers often offer slightly cheaper student accommodation in shared houses and apartments. Agencies usually offer more expensive, higher quality accommodation, often suitable for families or couples. Contracts are usually for a minimum period of six months or more.

Property agenciesStudent Accommodation
Jeffrey RossCRM Student
cps HomesCollegiate


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