Guest blog by a current student (Studio living)

This week our blog is a guest blog written by current second year international student Nicola Lai who is studying Management with Marketing student. She is looking at studios within private housing which could be useful for any UK/EU postgraduate students who do not fall within our Accommodation Guarantee.

Studios are available options for both undergraduate and postgraduate students on campus. Our undergraduate studios are available at Birks Grange Village including couples rooms and Holland Hall. We also have postgraduate options available at Birks Grange Village, Lafrowda and Rowancroft. Use our ‘search for accommodation‘ tool to find out more.

Guest blog by Nicola Lai
“At Exeter, there are numerous types of accommodation available. For first years, most students choose to go for university halls: catered or self-catered. For second and third year students, it’s more common to live in a shared house or live in private student accommodation. Private accommodation options are listed on the university website. Large purpose built halls offer different types of rooms: en-suite rooms, studios, and flats. As I am currently living in a studio, this post will focus on what it’s like to live in a studio!

I decided to move into a studio in my second year for more independent living. I’m the type of person who enjoys their personal space, so a studio was perfect for me. There are different types of studios – some more premium than others, so make sure you take the time to find the one that suits you best. Studios are quite pricey, so it’s important to make sure you will enjoy the studio experience.

Since we all have different preferences, I have listed some questions that you should ask yourself if you are considering living in a studio:

Do I enjoy cooking?
Okay, you don’t have to enjoy cooking, but I think it’s really important to at least be able to cook if you live in a studio. As you will be the only person in your studio, it means you’ll be the one responsible for cooking! Unlike shared accommodation, you won’t be able to depend on flatmates to cook for you. If you don’t enjoy cooking, a studio might not be the best option for you.

Do I clean up after myself?
As with cooking, you will be responsible for cleaning your studio. Unlike your first year in halls, you may not have a cleaner who will come in to clean the kitchen for you. This is why you have to be responsible enough to ensure you will clean up after yourself.

How much personal space do I need?
One of the reasons why I chose to live in a studio is because I enjoy having personal space! I’m not saying you won’t have that in an en-suite room with a shared kitchen, but living in a studio really lets you take up as much space as you want. Cooking is far more enjoyable for me now, as I’m able to use the entire kitchen for myself, instead of using a limited shared space.

Pros and Cons of Studio living


  • You’re responsible for everything, so there’s no drama regarding taking the trash out, washing up, etc.
  • You have a lot of space just for yourself
  • Bills are all included (depending on the residence)
  • On-site staff help with receiving packages and maintenance
  • Location – most studios are close to campus
  • Hall activities – e.g. Unite Students organise competitions and fun activities for students
  • Facilities – pool tables, vending machines, etc.
  • Cooking for yourself if you have a food allergy is good for keeping things organised/separated


  • Can be a bit lonely at times
  • Expensive
  • Laundry – most studios do not have a washing machine inside, so you will have to pay for laundry.


  • Living without anyone else can be lonely sometimes, so try to meet up with friends more often! This gives you the perfect excuse to explore Exeter more and find fun activities to do together.
  • Do your research! This sounds really obvious, but make sure you’re happy with the price, location, and services available. With so many different halls, make sure you choose one that meets your needs.
  • Book a viewing! Before I decided on a studio, I booked a viewing to see whether I could imagine myself living in a studio. Pictures can be deceiving, so going to a viewing will ensure you don’t make false expectations.

For more information, see the private housing for students webpage. Under the ‘private accommodation options’ tab, you will find information about the different types of purpose-built private halls, with links to the largest providers in Exeter.”

Thank you for this Nikola, it’s a great introduction to life in a studio. To see an example of some of our on-campus studio options, take a look at our virtual tours.

Accommodation Catherine

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