This area contains information to support decisions on where to live and what kind of accommodation you would like. Information is also provided on laws related to renting and buying property and common terms that will help in navigating the processes involved.

Short term

It is a good idea to arrange temporary accommodation before you arrive in the UK. This will give you the opportunity to get to know Liverpool and the surrounding area and decide where you want to live. Colleagues in your department will be happy to share their views on where they themselves live.

You may want to consider how long it will take you to get to work, public transport links, access to shops, distance to services important to you e.g. schools or medical facilities. If you have children, please visit our Families with Children page for information about schools and childcare. 

Finding a place

The safest way to find a property is to use a registered agent however, agents can charge fees and some people prefer to rent from a private landlord. Private advertisements can be found in the local newspapers, such as the Liverpool Echo or Wirral Globe or on websites such as Gumtree. Estate agents advertise on websites such as Rightmove or Zoopla.

Your rights and responsibilities

Before entering into a rental contract, please refer to Citizens Advice so that you are fully aware of your rights and responsibilities as a tenant. Be aware that you will be expected to pay a deposit, normally around five weeks rent, before you can move in. The housing charity Shelter also provides clear advice on renting. The Propertymark website provides some useful information about the regulation of property agents in the UK.

You and the landlord must sign a written tenancy agreement which states which of the below categories the property falls into, and includes a detailed inventory (list of everything the landlord is providing). It is important to check the inventory carefully and keep a photographic record of any pre-existing damage so you don't get charged for it at the end of your tenancy. The landlord is only obliged to maintain the building and items listed in the inventory. The landlord is also only responsible for insuring the building, it is your responsibility to buy insurance for your possessions.

See our Costs and Finance page for information on insurance, utilities and other property-related costs.


Rental property can be furnished, part-furnished or unfurnished. Although there is no legal definition of these terms, there are reasonable expectations in each of these categories:

Furnished A furnished property should include everything you need to move in straight away. This includes: cooker; fridge/freezer; washing machine; sofa; armchairs; dining table and chairs; bed/s; storage for clothing; curtains; carpets or finished floors; light fittings. Dishwashers, microwaves and waste disposal units are not always standard in UK homes. You will probably need to provide your own bedding; pots and pans; knives, forks, spoons; plates, bowls, dishes; towels; iron and ironing board; telephone but you should check if any of these items will be provided by the landlord.
Part-furnished In a part-furnished property, you would expect to find major appliances such as cooker and fridge and maybe a washing machine. There may be some large items of furniture such as dining table or sofa. You would also expect light fittings and carpets or finished floors.
Unfurnished There are still likely to be some essential items in an unfurnished house, such as cooker or fridge/freezer, but the tenant will supply the majority of the furniture.

For more information on terms used in the context of property in UK, please visit our common terms page.

Buying a property

If you decide to buy property, we strongly recommend that you read a guide such as Expatica. Buying property in the UK is not always straightforward and you need to be prepared for delays and expenses which you may not anticipate.

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