Applying for accommodation

Here’s a list of questions we’re often asked by students who’d like to live in university accommodation.

If you've got any other questions, please contact us.

Who can apply for accommodation?

To apply for University accommodation you need to select Anglia Ruskin University as your first choice university (not insurance choice), and have firmly accepted a conditional or unconditional offer to study a full-time course with us.

Most of our accommodation is for students aged 18 or over. Students under the age of 18 can book to live in Sedley Court or the YMCA. If you’ll turn 18 within three months of the start of your tenancy agreement, you can book any accommodation through ARU, but you’ll need to contact us rather than apply online.

Students starting a course in January
Accommodation options will be available for most students starting in January. We list rooms and eligibility on our website from November. If you have a hospital placement, you may be able to book accommodation at local hospital sites.

When can I apply for accommodation?

If you're planning to start university in September 2019, you can apply online from 19 February 2019.

How do I apply?

There are two easy steps:

  • make sure you've read about all your options

  • apply online (you'll need your ARU student ID number).

There are full instructions about logging in and how to book a room on our online portal. You can start an application and log back in another time to complete it.

If you need any help, contact the Residential Service.

Will I definitely get accommodation?

We allocate accommodation on a first come first served basis, so we recommend applying as soon as you’ve firmly accepted a conditional or unconditional offer from us. Explore your options in Cambridge and Chelmsford.

We'll help you to find private rented accommodation if you can't book a room through ARU.

Can I choose where I live?

Have a look at the properties available in Cambridge and Chelmsford, then when you apply online you can tell us where you'd like to live.

We don’t ask students to simply tell us their preferences. As long as you make any required payments within the given timescales, a room in that property will be yours.

In some of our accommodation you can even pick the exact room you want, so check out the floor plans.

Can I choose who I live with?

When applying online you can select which property you’d like to live in – and in some cases you can pick your exact room. If you’re able to pick an exact room, you’ll be able to see some basic information about the other people you’ll be living with, such as their interests, lifestyle, gender and age.

ARU is home to students from all over the UK and the world, so you’ll live with people from a wide variety of backgrounds. All our accommodation is interfaith, mixed gender and mostly single occupancy (a small number of twin and double rooms are available in certain halls).

If you require food preparation areas that are meat free or free from food allergens, consider booking a studio apartment so you can have your own kitchen. Alternatively, you could look to rent privately. We can help you with this.

If you know someone who’s going to be an ARU student and is eligible for accommodation, you may be able to book accommodation in the same property. In some properties you can pick your own bedroom, so you could even make sure you’d be neighbours.

Can I stay in University accommodation for my second year?

Most of our students only live in University accommodation for a maximum of one academic year. We make a small number of rooms available for students wishing to return, and we'll email you about this.

If you’re a care leaver or you have a medical condition or disability, you can apply to live in University accommodation for the full length of your degree course.

If you're thinking about moving out, we offer help with renting in the private sector.

I’m already studying at ARU. Can I apply?

If you’re looking for a room, contact us to find out what we have available or check studentpad.

If we’ve got rooms available for continuing students for the next academic year, we’ll send an email to all eligible students in early January. We can also offer lots of help on renting in the private sector.

Why can't I apply for a room through ARU?

There are a few different reasons:

  • our accommodation was already full at the time you applied
  • ARU is listed as your 'insurance choice' university
  • you accepted your offer less than 24 hours ago – wait until 24 hours has passed and try logging in again
  • you’re planning to study part-time
  • you’ve lived in our student accommodation before
  • you’re under the age of 18 on the date you start your course; please contact us to book a room
  • you're looking for family accommodation or a property that accepts pets, which we're unable to offer

You can read more details in our Allocations policy.

Allocations policy

If I can't apply for a room through ARU, what other options are there?

Go to our private rented accommodation page for help with safely searching for a room, finding temporary accommodation and other useful information about private renting.

I’ll be going on a placement during my course. What accommodation should I apply for?

We recommend asking your faculty where your placements are likely to be, before you apply for accommodation. We can’t accept cancellations or requests to vacate University accommodation if you decide you want to live closer to your placement.

If you’re going to be studying nursing, midwifery or operating department practice, you may be able to apply for NHS hospital accommodation closer to your placement.

For other courses, you can live in University accommodation and travel to your placement.

I’ll be studying nursing, midwifery or operating department practice. What accommodation option should I choose?

Eligible students with hospital placements can apply for any of our accommodation options, but have an additional choice of living at a local hospital site. Often this will mean you’ll be living closer to placements and with students on similar courses. Hospitals can usually offer contracts that fit with your course dates.

If you choose accommodation where your tenancy dates are shorter than your course dates, contact us to find out about accommodation that's available during the summer.

What options are available if my course runs beyond June?

Subject to availability, some University accommodation is available over the summer. You may need to move rooms. NHS accommodation may also be available over the summer for students with hospital placements.