If you’re starting your academic journey in Uppsala and got offered a student room by the University, then congratulations, you’re among the lucky few. But if you have strike out on your own in the search for accommodation, you may find it quite a challenge and may wonder what other options are available besides the one from the Student Housing Office. This blog post will provide you with different ways to find apartments in Uppsala and some practical tips from my own experience.
Why not a student room?
In previous blog posts on the Student Blog, you may read about living in a student dorm, and how I myself enjoy living in my student room and sharing a flat with other international students. However, not all people get an offer from the University’s Student Housing Office or have other reasons to seek other options. I recently decided to move out of my student room to move in with my boyfriend, therefore joining the tough challenge of finding my own place in Uppsala. Besides, here are a few reasons why you need to search for accommodation by yourself:
Let’s find a place to live
The infographic below will guide you through some steps you should take if you are finding a accommodation in Uppsala on your own. It’s recommended that you do all of these steps to increase your chance of striking gold!
5 ways to stand out to landlords and become a trustworthy tenant
Now that you hopefully should have made yourself a shortlist of a few housing options. Start to message/ call/ reply to the rental advertisements as soon as you find a match!
Personalize your first response: Introduce about yourself then ask if the rental is still available. Avoid sending only questions like “Hi, is this item available?”, which is automatically generated by Facebook and you can be sure your message will be drowned in hundreds of similar responses that the landlord will receive.
A bit of Swedish might help. As most of the ads on Blocket.se are in Swedish, you can first reply them with both Swedish and English. It’s a bit easier for the landlords to pay attention to your reply. Later you can ask to use English or ask Google or a Swedish friend to help with the translation.
Be honest, sincere, and show that how the rental is truly a match for you. State your hobbies and a nice photo of yours can give a good impression to the landlord. If you’re pet-free and smoke-free, include these details as well!
Prove your financial stability: You can increase your credibility if you or the person who lives with you have a scholarship/ job or any proofs for financial stabilities. If not, state honestly that you’re a student at Uppsala University.
Include references: Collect all references that you may have from previous landlords. I myself did include my Airbnb reviews. If your spouse has a job, most employers can help you with at least writing a recommendation letter to prove that you have a stable job and therefore trustworthy.
Actively reach out to landlords
Besides sending replies to landlords on their advertisements, which is most of the time very competitive, you become proactive by posting your inquiries on Facebook groups/ Blocket.se. In my case, I found a place from the advertisement posted by my boyfriend’s company, stating our budget and location criteria on Blocket.se. This can be especially helpful if you do not need the accommodations immediately and can move in in a near future, as some landlords will look at these ads first before they plan to post their own, driving out some competitions. Either way, remember to apply the same manner of communication mentioned above, be as polite and honest as you can!
Those are my experiences for finding accommodations in Uppsala. How about you? Do you have any pieces of advice you want to share with us? Let us know and good luck to everyone in the long quest for accommodation in Sweden.