Living arrangements


I read Matt_the_Chemist's thread about mortgages, and it set me wondering about other PhD students. Could any of you tell us what your living arrangements are - rent/parents/own, with partner (+/- children), parents, housemates, or alone? And your age too, as I'm presuming it might be different for those who are in their thirties compared to mid-twenties.

To get this started, I'm 27, I'm starting the second year of a 1+3 PhD, and I live in a rented house with four housemates (1 other postgrad, three "professionals" (as if PhD's are "amateur"!).


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Hi, I'm about to start my FT PhD next week and am 24 and have been living with my partner in a 2 bedroom rented house for over 3 years. I will also be commuting 70 miles by train to get to my uni, also wondering who else does a lot of travelling? It takes me over 2.5 hours from leaving my house to get to uni and I've been doing this journey for the last 2 years as I studied a PT MSc at the same uni. Thinking about moving a bit closer in the new year but only if my partner can find a job closer to uni because we can't afford to live off my stipend alone.


I am right at the end of my PhD, 28, and I live in Aus, so it may be a little different.
At the beginning I was renting with3 housemates. Then my husband and I moved into his parents house for 12 months to save for a house despoit. In March we bought a house. So now we live in out own house. We have tried all of the options!


I've lived with my husband since I was 22 and newly married. I started a full-time science PhD shortly after then, back in the mid 1990s. More recently my part-time history PhD has been completed with me still happily with my husband. No kids. I'm now in my late 30s.


I'm 30 and live in a rented 2-bed house. I have 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom and 3 office spaces (formerly a second bedroom, living room and kitchen) :$

I live with two cats at the mo. The house is about 6 minute walk from my actual uni office so it's very convenient.

I was recently declined for a mortgage because I'm being a stipend which, according to the UK banking system is apparently akin to being paid in Monopoly money! :-s

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======= Date Modified 01 Oct 2010 08:59:07 =======
======= Date Modified 01 Oct 2010 08:58:08 =======
I've lived with my hubby for 8 years. His parents bought a house when we were at uni, so they could make money off it by renting it out to us (yes we were charged rent :-( ) and our friends, and then they'd sell it on. But he went on to do an MSc and PhD at the same uni, so eventually his parents got bored and gave it to us (with the full £180k mortgage unpaid). So basically we got a £180k house without having to pay a deposit.

We are now 26, I'm at the end of my PhD, so we technically own the house - its all legally ours, but we only pay an interest only mortgage because my stipend has run out. He's a civil servant, so when we both get jobs we can start paying off the mortgage properly :-) Its a 3-bed semi detatched, with a garden, 2 ensuites and a bathroom (originally kitted out for 4 student rooms), and its in a really good location IMO, although not very near london which would, I suppose, be more convenient.

ETA: we only got the mortgage cos his mums our gurantor and her and her husband have I'd probably guess £millions (although we don't see any of it - boooo!) as he's a top city guy on £700k a year in his new job, so they can afford technically to cover our mortgage if we defaulted on a payment, but in 8 years we never have (up). If we did default they'd probably charge us 20% interest on that payment for them having to pay it anyway :-( so its not worth it.


I'm 26 and live in a 2 bedroom rented house with my boyfriend (and our cat!). Before my PhD we lived on opposite sides of the country but because he works mainly from home he was able to relocate with me.

We're saving for a deposit to buy somewhere which we should be able to do shortly after I submit in a years time.


I'm 44 and started my part-time PhD in December.  I live with my husband, 2 children (and the obligatory labrador) in our "forever house". We moved out of London 9 years ago and bought a farmhouse in the country (up north) - hence the labrador!  Wouldn't leave it ever (even if I win the lottery -I'd just redo bathrooms, kitchen, carpets which re all very dated). I travel 20 miles (each way) to my PhD university (not very often as I am in social sciences) and 50 miles each way to the uni I work in.  Because I live in the country I have to drive - public transport is so crap that if I want to get to work for 9am by public transport I have to leave by 6.30 THE NIGHT BEFORE!

I'm lucky in that I had a well paid career (which I gave up for academia) so got on the property ladder then and managed to benefit from London property boom in the late 90s.


I'm 28 and live in a two-bedroom flat with a pal. It works really well, the rooms are really big and we have a study room as well as a big lounge. It takes me 4-5 minutes to walk from home to my office, and 6-7 minutes to walk from home to the gym, and even less to get to the nearest pub! So I'm staying put, at least until the end of my PhD! KB


I'm 27 and live with my other half in a rented three bed terrace. I'm a short bus ride or a 40 minute walk to uni.

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Hi 4matt, I live in a one bedroom housing association flat, so the rent's really cheap. It's in a converted Vistorian villa and I have beautiful bay windows in the living and bedroom and a giant arch window in the kitchen and gardans that are shared but massive and really well cared for by a gardner. It's also in a great location for transport, the local - huge and gorgeous - park and for shops, and the conversion is really well thought out so its cheap to heat. However! It is in a different city to my work and my department is in yet another city, so I spend a lot of time and money on the train. But I've decided to stay here because my friends are close by, I love the flat, moving is a pain and my contracts at work are temporary - at present. I'm 41.


I live with my husband in a 2 bed house that we bought (mortgage) 2 and a half years ago, we were able to get the mortgage when my husband had a better paid job, not long after, he decided to go go back to uni which meant we survived on just my stipend. im in the 2nd year of a funded phd. I travel to my uni nearly 1 hour on the bus either way, and if im lucky, i get a lift from my other half, it is just 20 mins by car. We are in a good area for schools, we have a 3 year old who will start school so we chose the better area vs. living right next door to my uni. At the moment, my partner has a 1 year contract and he to commute about 1 hour (in rush hour) to get to his place of work. But this is for this year, next year he could be closer or even further away.


I'm 25, just in my 1st year of PhD. I live on a stipend paid by the college as part of a GTA scheme. I share an apartment with another guy who used to work at my college. I'm probably going to stay here for the next three years, because I litterally live 3 mins walking distance from my lab and office, which comes in quite handy during night-time measurements


I moved into a house with my boyfriend at the end of my 2nd undergrad year, when I was 20 and he was 23. I've just submitted, and we're still living there.... me at 25 and him at 28. He's not my boyfriend anymore though, but my husband to be :p

We're renting off his parents, his Dad bought the house as a bit of an investment. This is however a bit of a bad idea for two reasons..

1. his mother is clean freak and we get shouted at virtually every time they see the house because there's dust on the curtain rails or on the top of doors. It drives me mad :-s

2. They keep making snide remarks about us not having bought the house yet. I'm currently unemployed, the last thing I want to do and can do right now is buy a house.


I am 30 and 1.5 yrs into my first post doc. I live with my husband (who is also a post doc) in our 2 bed flat (we have a mortgage, but a small one for this place) and we have just bought another 3 bed house :p we hope to sell, or failing this, rent our flat out next year.. until then we will live in our flat whilst we do the new house up - not sure when I will actually get any post doc work done!! both places are approx 30min walk from uni. we currently have no children, but there will be some pretty soon...:-x