Finding accommodation is always a priority for those moving to a new city. Centrally located, and just an hour's train ride from both Birmingham and London, Northampton finds a balance between the tranquil countryside and bustling urban life.
Types of accommodation in Northampton
Steeped in English history, Northampton is home to many Edwardian and Victorian houses and heritage sites, but there are also plenty of modern accommodation options. In the town centre, many of the old shoe factories have been converted into modern flats. Further out, there are more spacious houses and quaint cottages. Near the university, student accommodation and houseshares are common.
Apartments are typically called flats and are available in high-rise and low-rise blocks. In the town centre, some old factories and warehouses have been converted into new flats, and the same can be found with some barns in the outskirts.
Hailing back to the Victorian era, terraced houses share communal walls on the left and right and mostly have nice period features inside. They are often highly desirable but the old Victorian buildings usually lack much insulation.
Semi-detached and freestanding houses
Some larger freestanding houses are divided into two semi-detached houses with a communal wall. These tend to be located outside the urban centre, but they offer more space, more rooms and a garden. There are plenty of modern developments in and around Nottingham that provide comfortable and contemporary homes.
Finding accommodation in Northampton
When looking for a place to live, we recommend making use of online property sites like RightMove or Zoopla. Most people hire an estate agent to do the legwork, since they know the Northampton property market and may know of deals that aren't yet publicly advertised.
Renting accommodation in Northampton
Making an application
Once a suitable rental property has been found, the rental contract can be drawn up. Prospective tenants may need to provide proof of ID and salary or funds as well as references from employers and previous landlords, and the deposit and first months' rent will need to be paid before occupancy can be taken. Expats should also be prepared to produce a copy of their visa.
The deposit is usually one to two months' rent. The landlord should deposit this in a Tenancy Deposit Protection scheme and not their own bank account. That way, the funds stay safe in the case of a tenancy dispute. At the end of the lease, the landlord may deduct expenses if the tenant damaged or misplaced anything or if the place needs to be professionally cleaned. Once a final amount is agreed upon, the landlord has 10 days to return the remainder of the deposit.
Signing a lease
Leases are usually signed on a one-year or six-month basis with the option to renew. Short lets are a good but costlier option for people who are planning on staying for a shorter term or who want to get to know the area before committing to a property for a longer term.
Rental contracts vary, and utilities are often not included in the rental amount. It's important for prospective renters to take into account all the extra costs, which may include gas, electricity and water as well as council tax and landline and internet costs.