Tuesday, 17 September 2013

WOW! My sons accommodation needs

Ok, it seems I have failed to teach my son anything about money! We are trying to find some appropriate student accommodation in Nottingham for when he moves there at the beginning of next term. I’m not being tight, and I genuinely want him to be comfortable and happy wherever he ends up living but I refuse to be suckered in by those charging a premium for shiny new televisions and leather suites! My son may be house hunting for the first time but I have been there, done that and got the tshirt and I’m just not falling for it no way…!

As I mentioned before we travelled down to Nottingham the other week to view a few student properties we had found on line. Well in general we were pretty impressed with the standard of accommodation on offer and we shor tlisted about 3 that we both agreed were reasonably priced and within the right area. At least that's what I thought anyway, turns out my beloved little boy had different ideas and he is now trying to persuade me to part with a bit more cash for a swanky new build which is granted, built specifically for students and very nice but nowhere near where he needs to be and by no means cheap!

We set up a savings account for Liam years ago to help him out when he was ready to go to uni, buy a house or a car, whatever….just a bit of a leg up for when he left school. There is a couple of grand in there so not a fortune and I don’t expect it to last long but now it seems it will be swallowed up in no time in rent alone. I’m sure the student accommodation in Nottingham is pretty much the same as anywhere else in the country. But as Nottingham has such a high proportion of students there seems to be quite a bit of competition between various letting agencies and landlords to offer the best deals and fill as many properties as they can. In my opinion a bit of competition is usually a good thing but it can sometimes cloud your judgement, particularly if you are an excited 19 year old leaving home for the first time.

The new builds are great I have to agree. Secure, modern, and well placed around shops, bars and takeaways. Liams excited because one of them has an onsite gym that is free to use. I don’t know why, he hates sport and has never set foot in a gym in his life!! Anyway i’m not convinced they offer the same value for money as some of the older properties that have been well maintained and kitted out to accommodate half a dozen students under one roof. For me, when I was at uni,  thats what being a student was all about. Ruffing it a bit and making some really good friends through sharing some quite dodgy experiences!!

Kids these days!! They just expect so much more than we ever did. I never thought finding student properties would be so complicated.  I’m sure we will find a compromise somewhere along the line but I am standing firm on this one.It is my responsibility to help him make the right decision and to make him realise that Mother is always right!!

Monday, 9 September 2013

Fleeing The Nest

New blogger alert!! My name is Mary and I am a 42 year old mother of two. My eldest son Liam has just finished his A levels and will soon be heading off to his new student accommodation in Nottingham to continue his education. I am absolutely bursting with pride, he has worked really hard to get to this point and I know he will go on to be really successful in whatever he chooses to do. But along with the excitement I am also feeling a little sad, worried and nervous about how he will cope so far from home.  I am sure there will be thousands of anxious parents out there who are feeling exactly the same as me right now, so I just thought I would share my thoughts with you as our little angels prepare to head out into the big bad world all alone.

It seems like only yesterday I was holding him in my arms nursing him to sleep. When they say ‘cherish every moment, they grow-up so fast’ I now know exactly what they mean. When I look at him now I just can’t believe how fast he has grown and in a few short weeks he will be leaving home to live in Nottingham...miles away!! We live in Scarborough so it is quite a trek down to Nottingham. we will probably only see Liam in the holidays once he has moved.

Last week we spent a few days looking at student properties in Nottingham wit the help of shields student homes. I have to say things have improved somewhat since I was at university. Students used to make do with a cramped bedsit and it was almost a competition to find the grottiest hovel you could.
Seriously….! Some students would actually take some kind of sick, twisted pride in the fact they had never cleaned the loo! We had already found several student properties we were interested in viewing online. Rent seems to vary depending on the size, location and standard of accommodation but it all seems fairly reasonable. Nottingham has a huge student population and certain areas are virtually overtaken by students. This has put my mind at rest a little bit, at least I know he won’t be walking around alone in an unfamiliar city.

Liam would go nutty if he knew I was writing about him in this way so I am hoping he does not find out!  I’m sure I don’t need to tell you how easy it is to completely destroy the street cred of a 19 year old boy. But this blog is not intended to embarrass him in any way, it is simply my way of dealing with the fact my little boy is fleeing the nest to live in student accommodation in Nottingham.  Hopefully by sharing my thoughts and experiences I can  help other Mummys (can’t remember the last time he called me that!) through this difficult but incredibly proud and happy time.