Allocation policy and process

Find out who is eligible for accommodation and when to apply. Our official Residential Accommodation Allocation Policy is set in November each year for the following academic year. The accommodation team follows the allocation policy to process all applications. You can read this year's policy here.

Residential Accommodation Allocation Policy 2019/20

University Accommodation is provided in Guildford for a full academic year (approximately 38 weeks) for undergraduate students or a full year (approximately 50 weeks) for postgraduate students. Any accommodation guarantees or priorities only apply to students joining or securing accommodation from the start of the academic year in September.

New Undergraduate Students

Undergraduate students who are new¹ to the University of Surrey are guaranteed a place in accommodation, provided the following conditions have been met:

  1. Applied for accommodation² by 25 July 2019
  2. Met the conditions of their formal academic offer by 25 August 2019.

New Postgraduate Students

Postgraduate students who are new¹ to the University of Surrey, are guaranteed a place in accommodation, provided the following three conditions have been met by 01 August 2019:

  1. Applied for accommodation²
  2. Met the conditions of their formal academic offer
  3. The University is in receipt of the requested academic fee deposit

Returning Students

Returning undergraduate and postgraduate students are not guaranteed³, with the following exceptions:

  • Students undertaking a PTY abroad in 2018/19, returning to study in 2019/20, who apply by 13th March 2019 will be guaranteed a room. Those returning from PTY in the UK, who apply by 13th March 2019 will be prioritised if rooms are available.

  • Undergraduate students paying overseas fees, who started their current degree programme in 2015/16 or earlier are guaranteed accommodation, if they apply for accommodation by 13th March 2019

Other Groups

  • Students starting a course at the Surrey International Study Centre will typically be offered accommodation if they apply² by 25th July 2019.

  • Students with special requirements / extenuating circumstances that are given high priority support by the Additional Learning Support Department (ALS), will be offered accommodation. Returning students should apply for accommodation by 13th March 2019 and obtain the required support by this date. Please note support from ALS will be required each year that a student applies for accommodation.

  • Incoming exchange students can apply for accommodation, but are not guaranteed³.

  • Certain Students’ Union designated posts are guaranteed a place in accommodation


  • 1 - ‘New’ refers to students who have not previously studied at the University of Surrey, at any level of study, including on a Foundation Course.
    • Students who have completed a course at Surrey International Study Centre are considered as ‘new’ students.
  • 2 - In order to apply for accommodation students must have successfully applied to the University of Surrey and made Surrey their firm choice, 72 hours prior to the accommodation guarantee deadline.
  • 3 - The expectation in 2019/20 is that limited accommodation will be available for students progressing from an undergraduate to postgraduate course or progressing from a foundation course to the first year of a degree course, it’s not expected that accommodation will be available for other returning groups.
  • This policy is reviewed annually and is subject to change.
  • Accommodation guarantees / priorities only extend to unaccompanied students applying for a single room. We are unable to guarantee the availability of accommodation for partners or families.
  • University accommodation can be provided both on and off the University campuses, in accommodation that is owned or managed by the University, or provided on the University’s behalf by a third party.
  • Accommodation guarantees / priorities only extend to full year or full academic year, full time students.
  • Room bookings are only confirmed after a student has formally accepted their accommodation offer and made the appropriate advanced rent payment.
  • Students not eligible for accommodation include: those on a placement year, studying part-time, writing up, assessment only or resitting part of their course, those who are absent or withdrawn, and occasional students.
  • The University reserves the right not to accommodate a student based on outstanding debts or the outcome of previous disciplinary processes.


Accommodation Residential Allocation Policy 2019/20 (PDF)

Accommodation Residential Allocation Policy 2018/19 (PDF)

Frequently asked questions

Rooms are not allocated on a first-come first-served basis. Instead after the deadline has past we start processing all applications. 

Students are only able to apply once per academic year. If you wish to change anything on your application, you need to email us stating clearly your name, University ID, the new order of preferences and any information to be added or amended, so we can update your application.

We have more than 3,000 ensuite rooms so there is a good chance of getting one. Please note that this is not guaranteed.