Private sector housing advice

For most students, their time living in private-rented accommodation is fun and problem-free. If you do have difficulties with your accommodation, the information on these pages can help.

Guidance on common housing issues

Information on how and where to look for detailed guidance on common housing issues. 

Wanting to leave a tenancy early 

If you signed a fixed-term tenancy but want to move out before your tenancy expires, you need to be aware of several issues. Visit the Shelter website for information on ending a fixed term tenancy early.

Deposit queries 

If your landlord is withholding your deposit, there are steps you can take to make sure it is fair. Visit the Shelter website for information and advice on tenancy deposits.

Repairs and maintenance 

Responsibility for repairs can depend on the type of repair and your contract. Visit the Shelter website for information and advice responsibility for repairs.


Some private housing providers want students to have a guarantor who lives in the UK. Find out more about guarantors and what you can do if you do not have one on our guarantors webpage

Council tax 

Information on council tax is on our Council tax exemptions webpage, including:

  • what it is
  • who is exempt
  • how to apply.

Landlord concerns

If you are worried that your landlord is not meeting their responsibilities or your rights as a tenant, visit the Shelter complaints about landlords webpage

Guidance on finding accommodation

Get links and resources to help you navigate the Bristol private rental market.

Finding accommodation 

Our Finding Accommodation webpages have detailed information on finding a place to live.

Ensure you also look at our Google map of rental areas

Avoiding scams

Housing scams operate in the UK, where people pose as landlords and ask for large sums of money for accommodation that doesn’t exist. Read our information on renting safely for information on what to look out for. 

Short term accommodation

It can be hard to find short-term accommodation in Bristol. Our short term accommodation webpage contains tips and resources to help.

All private landlords in England must check the immigration status of new tenants. See our Right to Rent page for what to expect when renting accommodation from a private landlord.

Choosing the right place 

Our information on viewings page covers what you need to look for when viewing properties. This has links to helpful resources and questions you should ask the landlord or agent. 

Understanding your contract

Contracts or tenancy agreements can be lengthy and difficult to understand. It is still definitely worth taking the time to read through them. Our Tenancies and terms webpage gives details of what to expect. 

Where to get further help

If you need more detailed support for the issues you are experiencing, there are a range of services available:



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