Living in the community

When living in the local area, it is important you follow the latest Government guidelines. England is now in national lockdown. This means you should remain at home and not move between your term time and permanent address. By adhering to Government guidelines you can help keep our whole community safe and ensure we take care of those around us.

Many local residents continue to be significantly impacted by Covid-19 and are still very concerned about the virus. Our community includes a large proportion of vulnerable and elderly residents, as well as those who are shielding. It is vitally important that you are considerate of others and act as a responsible member of the community. Please remember to keep noise levels down as many people are working from home, caring for others or self-isolating.  

Please also consider reading the UK Government's advice on Covid-19 and rented housing. Kent Union's Advice Centre also have more detailed private housing FAQs

Private accommodation

Updated 6 January: New guidelines relating to the national lockdown are now in force.

During this time you must not meet indoors with family or friends unless they are part of your household - this means the people you live with. You are therefore not permitted to have any visitors to your student residence.

We appreciate this is difficult. Please remember you may exercise outside with your household (those you live with) or with one other person from another household. Government guidelines state you should only exercise once per day and should keep within your local area. 

Updated 6 January: New guidelines relating to the national lockdown are now in force.

During this time you must not meet indoors with family or friends unless they are part of your household - this means the people you live with. You are therefore not permitted to have any visitors to your student residence.

We appreciate this is difficult. Please remember you may exercise outside with your household (those you live with) or with one other person from another household. Government guidelines state you should only exercise once per day and should keep within your local area.     

Updated 6 January: If you live with someone who has suspected Covid-19 symptoms, it is important that you and all other members of your household stay at home and do not leave the house for 10 days. The 10 day period should begin when your housemate first exhibited symptoms.  

You should all follow the procedure for students who are symptomatic or have been advised to self-isolate.

If any member of your household has been advised to self-isolate by a contact tracer from NHS Test & Trace, the other members of the household are not required to self-isolate.       

We are working closely with local partners, including the Police and local councils, who are responsible for managing the community’s adherence to Government guidelines concerning Coronavirus. We have developed a COVID-19 Code of Conduct for Students and Staff, which outlines the expected behaviours both on and off campus. Behaviour that significantly/ deliberately breaks the COVID-19 guidelines, on or off campus, will be considered under the University’s disciplinary regulations.       

Once you have signed a tenancy agreement you are bound by it, and your landlord will expect the rent from you even you choose not to move in to the property. It is very important that when signing an agreement, that you intend to live there regardless of how coronavirus affects your university teaching.

Some providers may be offering clauses that allow you to get out of your tenancy if there is more COVID-19 related disruption. However, this is likely to be rare.

If you are concerned about taking on a longer-term contract due to the changing situation, you may wish to request a shorter contract, or ask for a break clause that would allow you to get out of the tenancy earlier if you chose not to stay for the full term.

As the property market has slowed due to COVID-19 and there is a lot of uncertainty, you may be in a better position to negotiate terms in your contract, such as contract length or break clauses, that landlords or agents may have previously been reluctant to agree to. 

If you are struggling financially you may be able to access financial support

As of Saturday 29 August 2020, landlords must give a minimum of 6 months’ notice for most evictions of tenants and of some licensees. This will not apply to lodgers of live-in landlords. If your landlord has already issued you with a valid 3 month notice, they will not be required to extend it.

See full advice from the UK government about evictions during coronvirus.

Updated 6 January: New guidelines relating to the national lockdown are now in force.

During this time you must not meet indoors with family or friends unless they are part of your household - this means the people you live with. You are therefore not permitted to have any visitors to your student residence.

In the future, please consider that disagreements between tenants are often not really ‘legal’ problems at and you should first consider what is reasonable and fair to everyone involved. 

If you have a joint tenancy (one agreement for the whole property) disagreements between tenants must be solved between the tenants. Sometimes the landlord can help you reach an agreement but they do not have any formal legal responsibility here.


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