Student asking questions in Halls building

Accommodation and renting advice

Get your common questions about accommodation answered here

Contacting the Student Housing Team

You can contact the team Mon to Thu, 8.30am - 5.00pm and Fri 8.30am - 4.00pm by phone on 023 92 843214, or email on

Here are some common questions about student accommodation:

How can I find a property?

We recommend using University of Portsmouth StudentPad which is our official accommodation search engine. You can browse a database of student properties, registered landlords and information regarding private halls.

You'll find a wide range of property types, sizes and price points. We also have Facebook groups and events to help link students with potential housemates.

Do I need to pay council tax?

If you're a full-time student and you only live with other full-time students, then your house is exempt from Council Tax. If you're living in the PO1 - PO6 postcode area of Portsmouth, we'll let the council know for you - but if you live elsewhere or need proof for your landlord, you'll need to get in touch with us.

Can second and third-year students live in halls?

We allocate rooms in halls to first-year students first, so we're not able to offer halls rooms for returning students. We review room availability in Halls of Residence around October/November each academic year. We recommend contacting us at this time to check for any available rooms.

Meanwhile we strongly encourage you to search for accommodation in the private-rented sector. There's a wide range of shared houses, flats and lodgings across the city. Many of these properties are close to the University. The Student Housing department can give you advice and support to find suitable accommodation.

Can you change your room in halls if you're unhappy?

We allocate students to their highest available preference of halls.

If you're currently in Halls of Residence, then you can only move in exceptional circumstances. Halls of Residence have a dedicated Residence Life team to assist with any pastoral concerns.

To contact the Residence Life Team please contact

What happens if I lose my key?

If you lose or forget your key/access card or if you're locked out of halls, ask at reception for a staff member to allow you access to your room. Please note there may be a delay in gaining access.

For third party halls (Greetham St, Rosalind Franklin, Trafalgar Margaret Rule, Chaucer House and Catherine House) please visit reception or follow instructions provided during your induction.

Having guests to stay

In halls, you can have 1 guest to stay for up to 3 consecutive nights and a maximum of 6 nights in one calendar month.

We recommend that you let your flatmates know if you're expecting a guest.

Your responsibility for guests

You're responsible at all times for your guest's behaviour and actions. This includes being responsible for (and paying for) any damage that your guest may cause.

All overnight guests must be over 18 years of age.

For students living in a single sex area, all guests should be of the same sex.

What happens if I quit my course?

If you're considering leaving halls before the end of your contract, you'll need to ask for help:

Who to speak to

If you're considering leaving halls, please speak with your Residence Life Team as soon as possible. They'll advise you what to do next. Please do not just pack up and go or there will be financial implications.

If you're staying in third party halls (Unite, Catherine House), please speak to the relevant providers about your contract.

Can I get out of my hall contract?

When you accept the offer of a room in halls, you make a binding contract that you will live there for the agreed period. So you cannot break this contract midway through.

If you do vacate your room outside of the contract, then you're still liable for all remaining accommodation fees until the end of the agreed period.

Withdrawing from the University

If you decide to withdraw or are withdrawn from the University, you'll be required to move out of your halls of residence. Before you vacate your room, you should firstly inform the Accommodation Management team. You should provide them with confirmation of your official withdrawal. If you remain in Halls of Residence after you withdraw or are withdrawn, you will face eviction.