Check our information about living in University residences or private rented accommodation during the changing Covid-19 situation.
If you’re living on campus
Our priority is making sure you get all the services and support you need.
The Security team are available 24/7 and are actively patrolling to keep campus safe. You can call 01273 67 8234 or 01273 87 3333 in an emergency. See more Security team information.
- Not back in your accommodation? Skip to rent reductions.
What to do if you feel unwell
If you are feeling unwell and showing symptoms of Covid-19 it is essential you do not leave your accommodation at any time. This is to minimise the risk of spreading Coronavirus to others, including those who may be vulnerable. You need to do this for at least 10 days, until your symptoms are over.
Important: If you have symptoms, you must let us know by filling in the Covid-19 symptoms reporting form.
We will arrange food and regular welfare check-ins.
If someone else in your residence is unwell
We will provide advice to other students living in the same residence as someone who is feeling unwell with suspected Covid-19 symptoms. This will in some cases require those students to also fully self-isolate for 10 days.
If you think this relates to you and you’ve not heard from us yet, email HealthSafety@sussex.ac.uk as soon as possible.
We will arrange food and regular welfare check-ins, but you must not leave your accommodation.
Campus health services
Find out about our on-campus health services, including the Health Centre GP Practice, Dentist and Pharmacy.
Post, maintenance, cleaning and laundry
Our residential 24/7 receptions are open in York House, East Slope, Stanmer Court and Kings Road. You can collect your post as normal.
For maintenance requests, find out how to report a problem with your accommodation. Our engineers are currently only responding to critical repairs and maintenance. If it’s urgent, contact your porter or reception.
Communal areas and shared bathrooms in flats are being cleaned but ensuite rooms are not being cleaned due to social distancing requirements.
All launderettes on campus are open as normal. Follow any instruction signs – we may limit the number of people in the launderette at one time.
The Library, shops and sport
Check the latest on the Library on campus and your education during Coronavirus.
Visit the Sussexsport pages for the latest information about facilities, what they are offering online and how to contact the team.
If you have not returned to University-managed accommodation during the current restrictions (that began on Monday 4 January 2021), we will be extending the rent reduction until the end of the government restrictions, or when students are allowed to return to their course.
To qualify for the rent reduction
To qualify for the rent reduction you must have made a declaration by Friday 26 February 2021. This was communicated by email to all students with University accommodation, publicised in the weekly email update for students and also on the Student Hub.
Crediting your account
Your declaration will be used to reduce your outstanding rent balance or refund you for the rent due during the period of the lockdown if you already paid. This will be applied to your account by the end of the current restrictions, at which point collection will resume.
Paying your rent
If you return (or have returned) to your accommodation during this time, you will need to pay for the full period of the national lockdown.
Your balance will be available to pay on Sussex Direct and you can email email@example.com to arrange payment.
Credits have been applied to some student accounts. However, as the lockdown period has been extended and many students have returned to their accommodation, this information is being updated.
Due to the government restrictions, you should only return to campus accommodation if you’re in an exceptional situation.
This could be where you do not have access to appropriate alternative accommodation, facilities or study space, or where you need to return for health or safety reasons.
If you have an exceptional situation – as outlined in this declaration form – submit the form to enable us to understand your position and calculate your rent reduction.
We will update your account to reflect rent reductions. Once a credit has been applied to your account your balance will be available to pay on Sussex Direct or you can email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a payment plan.
Personal data collected through declarations is processed in accordance with the University’s Privacy Notice.
I’ve completed my rent declaration and I won’t be returning to campus until the Government lockdown restrictions are lifted for my course – what happens next?
Your account will be credited with the rent reduction when the government restrictions are lifted. You should continue to study remotely until restrictions are lifted.
I have completed the exceptional situation form – what will happen to my account?
We will be updating your account over the coming days to reflect rent reductions. Once a credit has been applied to your account your balance will be available to pay on Sussex Direct or you can contact email@example.com to arrange a payment plan.
I now have an exceptional situation reason to return or visit campus – what do I need to do?
If you have an exceptional situation – as outlined in this declaration form – submit the form to enable us to understand your position and calculate a rent reduction.
I haven’t filled out the rent reduction declaration
If you haven’t completed the declaration or informed us of having exceptional situation to return to campus, your Sussex Direct account will be updated to reflect your rental charges and we will be in contact in the next few weeks to arrange payment of your rent.
Your rent balance will be available to pay on Sussex Direct, or you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange payment.
I have been invited back to campus by my School and I have University accommodation. How does this affect my student account?
Your account will be updated with a rent reduction from the start of the national lockdown up to the date your course resumes on-campus teaching and learning. Once a credit has been applied to your account your balance will be available to pay on Sussex Direct or you can contact email@example.com to arrange a payment plan.
If you are a student who has been invited back to campus by your School, but you are not able to return due to personal circumstances, please complete this form. Unless we hear from you, we will assume you have returned to resume your in-person teaching, so let us know by 23 March if you are not returning.
I’m back at university – can I travel home for the Spring break?
The government is asking students not to travel home for the Spring break. It is strongly advising those students who only returned to university from 8 March to not travel wherever possible. This is in order to minimise transmission of Covid-19.
However, it may be that some students may wish to travel home for the vacation, particularly those whose courses resumed in-person teaching in January.
As such, it is legally permissible for students who have been living on campus to travel home for the Spring break provided this happens only once before 29 April, then travelling back to term-time accommodation at any time.
For all other students, you should not leave your current address and not return to University-managed accommodation unless you are in an exceptional situation, or you are on a practical course and have been invited to return to campus by your School.
You should also get tested before you travel home and then again before you travel back to university, where community testing facilities are available. If you test positive, you will be required by law to self-isolate for 10 days and should not travel. You can book Covid-19 tests in advance.
If you have more questions
- firstname.lastname@example.org for questions about accommodation
- email@example.com to discuss payment on your account
- StudentAccounts@sussex.ac.uk for anything else about your student account.
Already living with us
If you are currently living in University-managed accommodation, or plan to return, you must:
- inform firstname.lastname@example.org that you are living in your University accommodation
- ensure your payments are up to date – if you’re having difficulty paying, email email@example.com so we can arrange a payment plan to help and direct you to assistance.
Living off campus
Our team can help you to find rented housing in the private sector.
We will continue to share relevant information with you as the Covid-19 situation changes.
Anyone in England can now move home as long as health guidance can be followed. Keep up to date with government guidance around moving home. Keep in touch with your landlord/letting agent as you approach your move-in date. Discuss with them if the move-in date needs to be delayed – for example, if someone becomes ill with Coronavirus during the moving process or has to self-isolate.
Once you've moved into your accommodation, it's important that you follow the latest guidance on staying safe, social distancing and meeting in groups, in order to minimise the spread of the virus amongst our local community.
Finding a property
If you haven’t yet found accommodation, don’t panic.
There is currently still a good supply of properties in the city.
We recommend you keep up to date with Government guidance about moving home. Contact our Housing team for advice.
The government currently advises that a property should be viewed virtually in the first instance rather than in person where possible, to try and minimise public health risks.
If you have a strong interest in taking the property and want to view it before agreeing to take it, then this is possible.
Viewings can only take place by appointment and only involve members of a single household. Any visits to a property must be in line with the government’s guidelines on working in other people’s homes and social distancing.
Landlords and letting agents cannot show properties where tenants are self-isolating or clinically vulnerable and therefore shielding.
Repairs and inspections
Landlords have the same repair responsibilities at this time to ensure properties are kept in good repair and free from hazards. Continue to inform your landlord of any works or repairs needed. You can allow landlords and agents access to your home, if no one is self-isolating or shielding, for the following reasons:
- routine inspections, including annual gas safety checks
- essential and non-essential repairs and maintenance
- planned maintenance activity inside and outside the home.
Anyone working in your home should follow the government guidance for professionals working in people’s homes.
Difficulties paying your rent or bills
If financial difficulties might affect your rent payments, tell your landlord/agent as soon as possible. Discuss your concerns with them and explore other options, such as a rent reduction or a plan to make smaller payments over a longer period.
If you are having difficulty paying your energy bills, you could also contact your utility providers to see if they’re able to help. See who to contact.
Citizens Advice explains what to do if you can’t pay your bills.
The Student Life Centre, International Student Support and Student Support Unit and the Careers and Employability Centre are currently providing online services. Find out how to contact these services at this time.
If you are experiencing unforeseen financial difficulties or expenses, you may be eligible for the University’s hardship fund.
If you're having difficulties or delays getting your money you could receive an interest-free Welfare Loan from the University to help you out.
You can also contact the Student Funding Team about any problems or concerns relating to your finances during your studies. They can provide information on funding sources, expert financial advice and practical support.