What is Homestay Student Accommodation?

There are various student accommodation options in London. Most people have heard of halls of residences and house shares in private accommodation.

Yet not everybody knows about the possibility of a homestay, which gives you the option of living with a family in London.

We spoke to London Homestays about the homestay experience.

Why should I choose a homestay in London?

Staying with a family in a homestay is a great way to improve your English, as well as having all of the comforts of home.

Advantages of staying in a London homestay include:

  • Interact daily with a local family
  • Become a member of the ‘host family’ and build life-long relationship
  • Experience  local customs
  • Practice English with your hosts in their day-to-day lives.
  • Have meals provided by your host family

Homestays are popular with all types of students and are particularly useful if you want to improve your English.

Can I choose which host family I will live with?

Depending on your homestay booking, host families can vary in terms of age and their family situation. A good homestay agency will give you a selection of host families to consider. You can then read the family profiles to find out more about your potential host family before ranking the families that best meet your requirements. The agency will then do their best to match you to your preferred host family.

What about the challenges of living with a host family?

As with all decisions, you need to consider both the benefits and challenges of a homestay.

Living with a family might be challenging for you if you’ve lived on your own and you enjoy your own independence.

It is also important to remember that you will be living in someone else’s house and your host may have rules that you should follow. Also, there can be cultural differences that should be respected by both sides.

What advice would you give to a student considering a homestay?

  • Be open-minded. There may be cultural differences between you and your host family. Even if you share cultural heritage with your host family, do not expect them to be just like you.
  • Share and contribute. Your host family will be just as interested in your culture as you will be in theirs.

Where can I find out more about homestays in London?

Visit www.londonhomestays.com  or email your questions to info@londonhomestays.com

67 comments on “What is Homestay Student Accommodation?

  1. ayoub chelbi says:

    It’s interesting. It’s worth trying indeed.

  2. angelica says:

    wow! how interesting!

  3. Rob says:

    I hope you can advise me with information on the money evidence. I have a government financial sponsor that will cover 90% of the total of both, fees and living costs, and I will prove that other 10%, but I had no available money, I will be able to prove that 10% but not with a 28-day permanence in my account. Do you think this could be a reason of refusal?

    • Study London says:

      Hello Rob, you will need to send evidence that you have the 10% in your bank account for 28 days and also evidence of the government sponsorship (an official letter perhaps). Speak to your government office about what evidence they can supply.

  4. aman says:

    i want to know about an offer letter i m overseas student and i have applied in west london university…i want to know how long to wait for an offer letter after applying

  5. Luke Kone says:

    Hello there! I am currently a dependant on a PSW visa which expires by the end of Nov 2012 and have been in the UK the past 15months. I am currently on full time employment and have received an offer to study a masters degree program starting Jan 2013 of which I intend submitting a tier 4 visa application before the end of September 2012. For my maintenance requirement, would I be considered as having had an established presence in the UK?

    • Study London says:

      Hello Luke, the UKBA website states that “students” can have an established presence but they do not mention anything about dependants. I would contact them direct to find out. Given that your current permission to stay in the UK ends in November, I would also check the official course start date in January as tier 4 students are only allowed to be in the UK up to one month before the course start date. Sorry I cannot be of more help on this occasion and good luck with your application and the course.

      • Luke Kone says:

        Hi and thanks for your quick response. I will appreciate what information you can gather on these as I don’t want to run foul of the law/visa limits. Thanks!

  6. suresh says:

    I have completed my Masters and my graduation ceremony will be held in 18 Sep. 2012 but I will get my degree certificate after 6 weeks from that ceremony on my home address where I am currently living. On the other-hand my visa will expires on 15 October 2012. So, I like to ask how long can I stay in UK after expiring my visa?

    • Study London says:

      Hello Suresh, I think the date printed on your visa will be the latest you can stay. The end of your course is not usually timed by your graduation ceremony but the end of your teaching / exams as stated by your university.

  7. miko says:

    Hello, i want to know about admissions most importantly from international student to make a deposit fees before applying for visa? when you have a school give you CAS without collecting deposit from international student. Miko from nigeria.

    • Study London says:

      Hello Miko – some universities ask for deposits once they have offered you a place. This is usually about £1,000 and is asked for before your apply for your VISA and get a CAS. In most instances the deposit will be refunded if you are not successful in receiving your CAS. Always make sure you read the small print and ask the university to send you their refunds policy. Also make sure your university is listed on the UKBA’s list of highly trusted sponsors. Good luck.

  8. Daniel says:

    I’m already in London and in two weeks I’ll start a Master course. Could I do a English Course in other institution (not the same that is sponsoring me) before starting this new Master? I already have a Tier 4 VISA for studying at an University but I’d like to study two weeks of an English Course before, in other school. Is it Possible?

    • Study London says:

      Hello Daniel – yes it is possible to study an English lanaguage course before you start your university course. THE UKBA advises that it is possible to study other courses whilst on your Tier 4 visa so long as the other courses do not interfere with you completing your main course. You can read more information here on the UKBA website (click “Can you do extra studies while you are in the UK as a Tier 4 student?”). Hope that helps and good luck with the Master’s and the English!

  9. alejandra says:

    I’m applying for a masters in the UK but I have done trouble because my official bachelors degree hasn’t been issued and it will be until January 2013, I’ve completed my bachelors but I dot know what kind of document does the university receives so I can proof my qualifications.

    • Study London says:

      Hello Alejandra, your current university should be able to offer you a transcript of your completed course which you can use as evidence when applying to a UK university.

  10. Anup Shrestha says:

    my visa is going to finish in april 2013 but my course HND business had already finish in SEptember 2012 and i am waiting for a result. So it takes minimum one month to get my transcript and i dont have any intake in this year to do top up degree in business management. Now option is to apply For january intake. So will this gaps make any effect for me latter when i apply because its due to pending result i cant join for october intake?

  11. Anup Shrestha says:

    can i apply for business enterpreneur visa after bacheolar degree?

  12. Anup Shrestha says:

    My course HND business which is intended to finish in feb 2013 was finished in july 2012, my visa is gona finish in april 2013 and i am planning to do top up degree in jan. Now is it compulsory to extend visa within 2 month if course finish earlier then estimated date.

  13. Benilda says:

    Hello there…I finished Bachelor of Science in Tourism way back 2006 and I am currently working as a Ground Stewardess in a gulf country. I am interested to study graduate studies in Nursing in Uk.Would it be possible even though im not a graduate of Nursing course?

  14. Nasreen says:

    Hi Sir/madam,
    I got my tier4 visa on 4.10.2012 valid from 28.09.2012 to 31.05.2015 , but i couldn’t enrol for this intake as last day for enrollment was 01.10.2012.
    Now as i have got my visa, can i travel on the same visa for the Jan intake?

    • Study London says:

      Hi Nasreen – I’m afraid I don’t have any information about intake dates. You may need to re-enrol with your chosen university so please contact them first and also check the student visa rules with the UK Border Agency who will be able to help. I hope it works out.

  15. shofikul says:

    hai i m shofik,i have come to the uk last june.my college has close down 3 days ago befor i hve come.so did not enrole in my college.then i got admission at a new college without new visa.i have been doing my class from 3 month.now i want to change my college coz i m not satisfy withmy college.also my visa still remain 1year duration.should i need to a new visa application

    • Study London says:

      Hi Shofik – yes, you should be able to change your college. Please speak to both your current college and the college you would like to transfer to for more advice. Good luck!

  16. Jade says:


    I am currently an international undergraduate from the gambia studying in the university of kent. I am in my final year doing accounting and thinking to do ACCA after i graduate. My visa expires on october 2013. Because of my course, i have gotten exemptions from most of the ACCA papers so it will take me about a 18 months to complete instead of 3 years. I also need 3 yrs work experience to be get full accreditation. How long would my visa be for? And would it include the 3 years i need to fain relevant work experience.. Thank you.

  17. Rose Bree says:

    Hi there,

    I completed a masters in September and am hoping to get a Tier 2 visa. I understand that you need to earn 20k to qualify. If my employers offer me a salary of 16k plus monthly commission (which will make my annual earnings over 20k), will this qualify me for a visa?

    Many thanks.

  18. Gopi says:

    Sir, i am planning to study my phd degree in london, please can you advice me student visa is it eligible to stay in uk with my wife and my children. Thanks , Regards. Gopi

  19. anshul hans says:

    Hiee, I am anshul hans..I did my 10th in 2003 and 12th in 2012..Can i apply for bachelor’s degree in tourism management from Uk’s university..pls advice I am eligible or not as there is huge gap..

  20. avinash says:

    Hi, I need some advise regarding my career, I have recently finished my masters in health management and I am on my Tier 2(PSW) visa. I am presently working as a Bio medical support worker.I like this field and I want to do a part time Masters in Biomedical research while continuing my job. I have my visa until August 2014, and the part time masters is 3 years is it possible to get a visa after my current visa expires to continue my job and masters. please guide me. Thank you in advance

  21. Murali says:

    Helo sir,
    i am from india. I have completed my 12th in 2004 after that i did not joined in any courses and again i joined graduate course in 2009 i have completed recenty. My question is am i eligible for any postgraduate course in uk?
    I heard some news that uk will going to extend visa duration after completing study there. Normally it is course duration plus 4 moths. Is it true that they will extend this more than 4 moths?

  22. Z71 says:

    hi, i’ve received an unconditional offer for a postgrad degree, and i was asked to send a deposit inorder to receive the CAS.

    1-Is there a chance for NOT getting a CAS ? or the unconditional offer is automatically considered an official acceptance ?
    2- when can i start to apply for the VISA the earliest ?

    Thank you

  23. Pranav says:

    hello!! i am pranav, i am from india, i have completed 12th class in 2012, i got 5 bands overall and i want to know can i apply for u.k study visa??

  24. Kelechi says:

    I am on post-study visa (PSW) which will expire in March 2013. I have already started a PhD Programme in October 2012 with my PSW visa. I intend to switch to tier 4 student visa in March 2013 in order to continue my PhD study. Will I have a problem switching to tier 4 student visa as I started my PhD with my PSW visa.

  25. Raman says:


    I am one of the Caribbean medical student , doing my clinical placement in Queen Mary Univ . My current visa expires on Jan 31 2013 . My new course starts on Feb 25 at university of Sheffield . i already submitted my visa application form which is under process . Unfortunately need to extend my visa for 2 weeks from Feb 2 to Feb 15 th . I just wounder whether can use the same visa ? i spoke to the hospital they asked me to get letter from the UKBA saying that am allowed to do 2 weeks . so please help me . is it possible or if so how can i do it

  26. JJ412 says:


    I am looking for confirmation that with the school I would like to attend- London School of Business and Finance (LSBF), they CANNOT grant me a Tier 4 Student Visa where I would be able to work 20 hours per week. And this is due to the fact that although they are on the HIT list, they are not on the “list of recognised bodies” list. Only a school that is on BOTH list would allow a student to be working while taking a course there.

    I would greatly appreciate any feedback as I have been reading conflicting information.

    Thank you!

  27. ripon says:

    im a student in uk now, i got visa on september 2009 to 21 april 2013,so 8th October 2009 i came to uk, first i did presessional course for 3 three months then i started my main course in February,2010 HND in business , AND I completed my HND level 5 on october 2011, in November 2011 i got the HND level 5 certificate, then my college syas they don’t do further course then i change my sponsorship because they don’t do further course and also it was A Rated college,then i admitted with a new sponsorship in a university to do top-up course which is level-6 it was 1 year course , and i inform that to ukba i changed my sponsorship and course then i got permission from the ukba, after a few days my mind chages i want to study BA Hons Business management full course which is three years start from March 2012-june 2015 that time i didn’t inform UKBA that i change my course from BA topup to BA full degree course, then i did presessional course from this year march 2012 to june 2012 after that in 15 June 2012 i started my main course in this university , already i have finish my year just waiting for the result, Noqw I want to know what should i do now?,because i want to extend my visa because it will expire on 2013, do they give me permission to complete my degree or they will refuse under the rules student cannot stay more rhen 5 years at degree level ? can you please let me know plzz,plzz ,,

  28. Sofia says:

    Hello, I`m a student in London, and I currently under Tier 4 general. Is there any way I can be self-employed? I know that you would expect the person to be graduated, but is there any chance I can sort my visa out for it?
    Thank youu

  29. Genji says:


    I would like to ask about student visitor visa. I am a non-visa national and would like to study at an English language school in London. I have been looking at the 6 month and 11 month options. If I apply the 6 month option which is the minimum number weeks I must study at school? Same question for 11 month option? I ask because I think I want to combine study with some tourism.

    Thank you so much, you seem to be very helpful when many do not take the time to provide any help.

  30. ali jalil says:

    i have invitation from university of strathclyde, i want you to help me about how can get visa and which type of visa i need

  31. anup says:

    hii i am anup shrestha tier 4 student reading bacheolar top up (level 6)degree in sunderland university which am going to finish in august. i went on holiday and get married and now i want to bring her here. so can i bring her now as dependent or i have to wait until i do mba. Do i have to inform ukba now i am married?

  32. Dinesh says:

    I recently immigrated to Canada from India as PR. I have secured my admission to MSc program in London UK and have applied (On-line) for student visa (Tier 4) for Myself and my dependants (my wife and daughter) on Aug 10, 2013. I have an appointment fixed for 26 Aug, 13 for Biometrics and Submission of Documents.
    I have sufficient funds with me, but they are not 28 days old. On the other hand I have secured loan from bank here in Canada (secured against my cash investment in bank).
    Q1: Do they accept my funds in shape of Loan.
    As I am in low risk country, but not national.
    Q2 :Can I expect some relaxation in Visa Process as my status in Canada is “Permanent Resident” and Canada comes under low risk Country as per UK Border Website.
    As funds need to be 28 days old.
    Q3: Which date will be considered for my funds, Date of On-line
    Application date or Submission of Documents.
    Q4: Can I show funds after the date of On-line submission (10/06/13) of Application date or Submission of Documents.
    Looking for an earnest reply. I will appreciate your earliest reply.

  33. RadioActive says:

    I am an Indian student who wishes to apply for a tier four student Visa. While both my parents are still alive, my uncle wishes to sponsor my studies and has got the court to appoint himself my legal guardian. I was wondering whether he will be able to act in this capacity and provide maintenance for my studies? (I have the necessary court documents proving his guardianship). If he cannot, however , sponsor me in this capacity, he is willing to sponsor me through the company he owns, (a private limited company), using the company bank details and statement documents to complete the formalities for the Visa. Are any if these options doable? Your advice on this matter will be most gratefully received. Thank you.

  34. greetings, I’m interested in your English courses, I would like to start next year asap. When do you open in January?


  35. Ampeire Raymond says:


    • Study London says:

      Hi Ampeire, you have to show that you will have access to sufficient funds while you live and study in London. You will need to submit bank statements to show this. You will only be able to submit the details of your uncle’s accounts if your uncle is your legal guardian, otherwise the funds have to be in an account in your name. Please contact the international student advice team or the visa advisor at your prospective university who will be able to talk you through all the requirements. Good luck!

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