Community Warden Cara's Tips for Moving into the Community

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Moving out of halls in first year can seem like a scary process, but it is also an exciting time, especially if you’re moving into a house with your friends. I found that living in a house felt homelier than being in a flat, and living with people you get on with is a key part of this.

Here are my top tips for moving to Selly Oak, or other local areas, to hopefully ease any uncertainties and nerves you may have:

Introduce yourself to your neighbours

After you have moved into your new house, I’d recommend knocking on your neighbours’ doors to say hello and introduce yourself. Moving into Selly Oak makes you part of a new community and by reaching out to those around you, it will certainly make you feel more settled in.

Image of the doors of terraced housesCheck your inventory

One of the first things you need to do when moving in, is check your inventory list and take photos of any damages to send to your landlord or letting agency. You should send these photos preferably via email to let them know what may need fixing. I know when I moved in there were certain issues that needed fixing, so I recommend getting this sorted first.

Get contents insurance

I would recommend taking out contents insurance to cover your possessions against theft, fire and any other risks, this is always good to have in place, just in case. This will save you any hassle and money if something were to happen to them.

Organising your paperwork

Setting up your bills i.e. Wi-Fi, gas and electricity, is not as difficult as you may first believe it to be. You can make a start by researching online to find good deals for affordable prices. I’d suggest looking into providers at least a few weeks before you move in. Once you’ve moved in, you’ll need to send your meter readings to your water, gas and electricity providers. Don’t forget to update your new address with the University and register for Council Tax exemption with Birmingham City Council so that (as a student) you aren’t charged tax.

Keep yourself safe

Whenever you leave your house, always make sure all windows and doors are locked. We have a range of personal safety equipment at our Community Warden office if you would like to have some extra protective measures too. Our personal safety alarms are very useful to keep on you when you’re out and about in Birmingham.

Also, in the unlikely event that your house were to be broken into, make sure to tell your landlord or letting agent immediately if anything seems broken or stolen, as well as contacting the police.

Image of binsSort out your bins

When you move in, make sure you have two wheelie bins: a household waste bin and a recycling bin, this should also have a paper pod in, for paper and cardboard. If you do not have a specific bin or a paper pod, then you can request a new one from the Birmingham City Council website. If you are living on a road that doesn’t have wheelie bins, then don’t put your bin bag out too early as they often split and create litter on the street. Bin day is Wednesday, so I’d recommend putting your bin out on a Tuesday night to ensure your rubbish gets taken.

If you are unsure about how to recycle effectively, the Community Wardens are always here to help you with any queries. You’ll see us out and about in Selly Oak next year helping you with any bin or safety issues.



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