- Liberty Living
- Parents & Guardians
Supportive and secure accommodation
We know it can be hard sending your child out into the ‘real-world’ – no matter how old they are! That’s why we feel like it’s really important to reassure you that our student accommodation is safe, secure with lots of support on hand - we can’t quite do your job, but we give it a pretty good try!How to book
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Advice for Parents & Guardians
Going to University is a milestone moment for any new student. If you’re a parent or guardian, it can be a little daunting for you, too. At Liberty Living we recognise your vital supporting role and welcome you as part of our student community. We want to give you as much information as possible so that you can help your son or daughter make the best choices about their new home.
Naturally, you want your child to enjoy their independence – they’re not technically a ‘child’ anymore, after all! We know, however, that you’ll probably worry about their new-found freedom and you’ll want to ensure that the accommodation provider they choose will provide a supportive, safe living environment. Plus, you’ll undoubtedly want them to have a fantastic student experience surrounded by new people in preparation for life.
We’re dedicated – not to mention experienced – in delivering a quality living experience to support your son or daughter through their time at University. We’re just as keen as you are to see them develop and grow as an individual, so we provide every opportunity for them to do so.
Our parents' page has been devised with this in mind, for parents and guardians of both prospective and current students.
It includes loads of details about all of the questions you probably have, from our background, right through to how we’ll help your son or daughter fit in and make the most of their University journey. We offer approximately 25,000 accommodation places on and off campus in 21 cities and 53 individual locations around the UK and Europe. We work in partnership with all of the universities in those cities in which we operate and enjoy a reputation as a leading provider of quality student accommodation.
We hope this page gives you the vital information you require to help make the best choice for your family and ultimately your student-to-be.
Please also note that we have a FAQ page – a great reference point for all those burning questions, as well as those you hadn’t even thought of yet. Of course, if there’s anything we haven’t covered, please feel free to contact the Residence Team at the residence your son or daughter will be staying at by using our Contact page.
Safety & security
Safety and security arrangements in Liberty Living accommodation
Without the absolute highest levels of attention to the safety and security of our students, it wouldn’t be possible (or right) for us to do what we do. When your son or daughter stays with us here at Liberty Living, you can rest assured that they're in good hands.
For over a decade we have led the industry in working to ensure that the health and safety of our residents stays at the top of our priorities at all times. We pioneered a 5-stage* approach to health and safety which has led to an excellent safety and security record, and all of our staff place the highest importance on making sure each student’s wellbeing comes first.
1. 24-hour security
Our residences employ trained and experienced security teams round the clock. All security staff receive residence-specific training and are Criminal Record Bureau checked. They are there to deliver a rapid response to any health and safety or security-related issues and to ensure that our residence is managed for the good of everyone who lives there. Security can be contacted using the numbers provided on the residence pages out of office hours, but they’re typically found patrolling the residences, as an added reassurance to your son or daughter.
Residences have comprehensive CCTV recording and monitoring facilities, leading to a high rate of detection in the rare event of any security incidents. Often, thanks to their dedication, our Security Teams are always available to intervene quickly after observing a potentially unwanted situation.
3. Access control
Residences have electronic access control systems, allowing the Residence Team to remotely activate or cancel cards/fobs if a resident has lost their card. This control of who can access the residence allows for increased security and a reduced level of anti-social behaviour.
4. Senior students/Wardens/Mentors
Residences have recruited and trained Student Experience Representatives who live at our residences to act as ambassadors for Liberty Living within the student body, and among their peers. These senior students acting as Student Experience Reps can advise on safety, security and anti-social behaviour where needed and are a vital part of our teams, highlighting our desire to work with our residents in ensuring a safe experience for all.
In many cases these senior students work in conjunction with the University and liaise on matters of both residential and academic life. We think they’re great, and our students agree – sometimes it’s nice to have someone a little more ‘relatable’ to turn to! You can contact Student Experience Reps if you’ve got any questions through the residence email address – which you can find on our contact page.
5. Residence Team
Residences have a Residence Team including a General Manager with direct responsibility for day-to-day security, health and safety and all aspects of residential life. Health and safety is controlled and managed by our dedicated national team based in Manchester. The team can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org
*Whilst we endeavour to provide all stages listed above, some smaller residences are not manned 24 hours a day – see the residence specific page(s) for details.
How to book
Booking with Liberty Living is nice and simple to make things absolutely clear for both you and your son/daughter. It’s easy to book with us online!
The online process allows our students to complete the first stage of guaranteeing a room here with us at Liberty Living. However, it’s important to note that it’s not all confirmed at this point! We get so many applications on any one day during our busy periods that we have to take a little time to actually accept each one. To make it more likely that we do then accept them, we ask that great care is taken as incomplete or incorrect applications will reduce the chance of being accepted.
Liberty Living are a private landlord, and so rooms managed by us are contracted to students based on a Tenancy Agreement – also known as an Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreement, or AST. This is the most common form of rental arrangement across the UK and protects both the resident and landlord. In fact, it’s the only way we can contract rooms to our students. It’s good news though for you and your son or daughter – it ensures all obligations are correctly communicated and observed from both sides, to avoid any confusion.
When it comes to guaranteeing a room, this is only possible when your child has sent a copy of a completed and signed Tenancy Agreement back to the residence application office. They also have to pay a £200 Booking Fee. When this is done online, the online application acts as a virtual ‘signature’.
When it comes to the booking fee, don’t worry – we don’t stockpile them all in some corporate account, letting them collect interest! They are actually stored under something known as the Deposit Protection Service, which acts impartially and is a great help in case of any disputes.
Please note, the application process above applies only to "direct let" rooms, i.e. those available for any student to be allocated. Sometimes a student may have been directed to us, because some residences have specific arrangements with universities where universities allocate rooms in partnership with us.
Acting as a Guarantor
As part of their Tenancy Agreement with Liberty Living, your son or daughter has a duty to pay his or her rent on time. It’s the first time that many students are faced with such a big responsibility, and we understand that sometimes the biggest life lessons can be learned in making mistakes!
If a student misjudges their ability to pay rent, we need a fall-back plan in place, which is why we ask UK students and any international students paying in instalments to back themselves up with a responsible adult that they can trust (and one who trusts them!). A Guarantor pays for the student in cases where they miss a payment or are otherwise unable to pay.
Usually, students ask their parents, guardians or another family member to be the Guarantor. If you are asked to be this person, it’s important to understand what this entails before you agree to it.
As a Guarantor, you would have a legal obligation to us, which is why it’s vital that your son or daughter gets your full consent before they submit your name as part of this role. If you agree to be a Guarantor for a student, then we’d need to take some personal details from you as well as proof of your address (in the form of a council tax bill), as you need to be a UK resident to take on the responsibility.
You’d also need to sign the Guarantor form we will send you once they’ve completed their booking to prove to us that you’re alright with everything, and that you understand what’s being asked of you.
Liberty Living staff – what you can expect
We believe that when student accommodation is done right, it can seriously enhance the student experience, and we’re passionate about making sure we do just that. Over our many, many years doing what we do best, Liberty Living has gained a reputation as an industry leader in the field. We work in official partnership with many universities and of course, thousands upon thousands of happy students. How do we manage this? We hire the best staff, through a unique system of recruiting and training people who believe in our company values:
Attentive to Service – ‘Liberty People’ receive plenty of role-specific training and undergo our bespoke ‘Attentive to Service’ training course which our more experienced staff have designed especially to impart their wisdom onto everyone else! Our belief that our product is more than "four walls and a roof" means that our team regularly goes that extra mile to improve a resident's experience of Liberty Living.
Commitment to excellence – Liberty People are Criminal Record Bureau checked, trained and allowed to act using their own initiative under a structure that is arguably enviable in the industry, ensuring rapid response to any suggestions or issues. We believe in a philosophy of constant improvement and are happy to learn from interactions with residents, as well as you, the parents or guardians. If you have a comment or suggestion, we'll be happy to hear it!
Respect for people – We believe that our residents are adults and they are treated as such. We also recognise that parents or guardians are often paying for accommodation and have an interest in what happens in their son or daughter’s accommodation. Our teams are encouraged to work with residents to produce results that work for everyone.
Liberty People will respect residents' privacy and never patronise or talk down to residents. One important point to note is that Liberty Living has a contractual relationship with the resident and no contractual relationship with a parent or guardian – so whilst we totally respect you and your input, we’ll always aim to keep this point in mind.
Our residences typically have an on-site management, maintenance and administration staff known as the Residence Team, as well as ‘Student Experience Representatives’ ready to answer any questions and deal with any problems directly. We find that it works really well having a mix of staff – people that students see as being on ‘their level’, combined with those with a little more experience who can really look out for the residents.
Your son or daughter’s Residence Team can be contacted directly through the website and will be happy to respond to any questions you may have. Smaller residences get support from the teams at larger residences, and although some services are delivered remotely, your child will still always have someone to turn to. You can get more information about this on the residence specific pages on the website or by giving the residence in question a call.
Here’s what you need to know…
Your son or daughter will be asked to pay a £200 Booking Fee before moving in to any Liberty Living residence. This Booking Fee forms part of the whole application process and is necessary before any room can be allocated to the student. The Booking Fee needs to be paid online (for online applications), or can be paid by cheque (for postal applications).
When your child moves in and the Tenancy Agreement actually starts, the Booking Fee automatically becomes a security deposit. If any student leaves the property owing money or has damaged something during the course of their stay, we can use this deposit to cover our costs.
When your son or daughter moves in, they’ll need to complete an inventory to protect them against any damages which may have been caused by the previous resident. It’s really essential that this is filled out immediately because we don’t want them to have to take the blame for something that they didn’t do! An inventory form will be provided by the Residence Team as part of the big move-in day.
All deposits are protected by the Deposit Protection Service which holds the deposit safely and impartially throughout the Tenancy Agreement. The deposit will then be returned within 28 days of the Tenancy Agreement ending, minus any charges applied for damage to the property or rent outstanding.
To ensure that mutual agreement can be reached, your son or daughter should make sure to arrange a room and flat inspection with the Residence Team before they leave. This way, everything is out in the open and there will be no unpleasant shocks out of the blue. If your child disagrees with any charges, they should raise the issue in writing with the Residence Team within 10 days of being told about them.
In the event that an agreement cannot be reached on level of charges, the Deposit Protection Service will be able to step in and mediate fairly.
Under the terms of the Tenancy Agreement, rent is due at set dates throughout the year. Typically, Liberty Living offers an option to make a single payment (with 2% discount) or three payments throughout the year (timed to approximately coincide with student loan dates).
Residents are required to set up post-dated debit/credit card payments using our Online Booking Service or to send in post-dated cheques to the local Residence Team. If a student fails to take these steps, it’s a breach of contract and we have to recover outstanding rent from a Guarantor – often a parent or guardian.
Our option to pay in three instalments is only available to residents who are able to provide a Guarantor. This Guarantor must be a permanent resident of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales, and they must be willing to act as Guarantor in the event of non-payment of rent or damage. Plus, they need to be able to provide proof of address in the form of a council tax bill.
It’s a big commitment, and hopefully you’re never actually needed – but to make sure you completely understand what’s expected of you, make sure to read our guide to 'Acting as a Guarantor'.
Pastoral care – How Liberty Living manages the welfare of your son/daughter
Our philosophy is that we provide "more than four walls and a roof" and we try to understand accommodation from our residents' point of view. Moving away from home can be a really daunting experience and even the most social butterfly can find it slightly challenging to adapt. Most students soon settle into the group living environment, but we know that occasionally your son or daughter might feel lonely – it happens to the best of us. We make sure that all of our students know they can turn to us with any issues in their flat or accommodation and beyond.
Our Residence Teams are experienced in advising on and mediating in all kinds of welfare issues commonly experienced by students, from homesickness to difficulty in getting on with flatmates, noise complaints to relationship troubles, partying a bit too hard and even having trouble with studies.
When it comes to residence-specific issues, our ultimate responsibilities are constrained by the Tenancy Agreement, but our aim is to work with students to come up with the best solution for everyone involved. We are committed to helping residents to have a great living experience, and will help them achieve this wherever possible – we’re always around for support and guidance.
We do our very best, but some things are a little out of our depth. If we are ever unable to assist with any particular issues experienced by your son/daughter, we will advise them to contact you or point them in the right direction for the support they require. This could be from another member of the Liberty team, a Student Experience Representative or even someone at the University or a health professional.
First class facilities
We’ve thought about everythingDon’t worry – they’re not going to show up on your doorstep with piles of laundry, because we provide the facilities for them to do it themselves! It’s not all about washing clothes though, and we’ve got top, modern facilities across the board. Our facilities are the best of the best, meaning they won’t have to go without a thing. Just look at some of the great facilities we feature in our all-inclusive student accommodation.