Accommodation - Returning students

Colchester Campus accommodation 

Make an application

Find our online accommodation applications for returning Colchester students.

Returning accommodation applications for the 2023-24 academic year, are now open. 

£200 Cashback

£200 Cashback

Great news! We have rooms available for returning students for the 2023-24 academic year, if you would like to come back and stay with us. 

Even better news! If you apply by 15 January 2023 you will receive £200 cashback (which will be paid into your student finance account in December 2023, after you have moved in)

All students that apply by 15 January, will receive a room offer.

Your allocation will be sent to you by the end of January, so please keep checking your email account as its important you accept your offer. 

Cashback offer Terms and Conditions

Applications must be completed before midnight on 15 January 2023 to be eligible to the cashback offer. The payment will be made in December 2023, following the applicant successfully moving in and completing the first rent payment. The £200 payment will be sent to the applicants Student Finance account. If you have previously held a tenancy or licence agreement with the University, our obligation to grant you the tenancy described in your Offer will be conditional on you having paid all sums due to the University under your previous tenancy or licence agreements. You will not be able to take up a new tenancy if you have unpaid debt from an earlier contract. This offer is only available to students who will be studying at the University full time in 2023-2024, and applied to accommodation, owned or managed by the University.

Apply now

Returning undergraduate and postgraduate students Colchester

Applications are open.

On the application form, you will be asked to select your preferred locations. Please select these in order of preference and don't select any location which you wouldn't be prepared to accept. We cannot guarantee that you'll be offered your first choice of accommodation.

Returning undergraduate

You will need to access the online form via the following link and select the 2023-24 academic year from the drop-down, when applying.

(You will need your Essex username and password to apply)

Returning postgraduate

You are required to complete a PDF form and please note, that these are interactive PDF forms. Therefore, you must save a copy of it to your device before completing your information. If you do not save this file to your device, you will lose any information you have filled in. The submit button will then attach the form to an email ready to send to us. Alternatively, please send via email to

Northwest Partnership

Accommodation is guaranteed to Northwest University students, as long as you accept your accommodation offer by the offer expiry date.

(You will need your Essex username and password to be able to apply)

Living with friends

You're welcome to request an allocation with your friends. You should list their PRIDs in the 'additional information' field on the online application form. Each of your friends must also submit their own separate application and have the same preferences as you. Please note that we cannot guarantee we will be able to allocate you and your friends as a group.

How we prioritise

Rooms will then be offered, as and when they become available. Rooms will be prioritised in the following order:

  • Welfare/medical need undergraduates and postgraduates
  • Part-year, incoming study abroad and Erasmus students, who fall outside the guaranteed quota of rooms
  • New overseas fees undergraduates and postgraduates
  • New home fees undergraduates and postgraduates
  • Returning study abroad students (including Erasmus +) students and work placement abroad students
  • All other work placement students
  • All other full-time undergraduates and postgraduates
  • All part-time undergraduates and postgraduates
  • Returning part year students
  • Continuation and completion students

Next steps

We hope to begin making accommodation offers in March 2023, so please make sure you check your email account regularly from that date for your offer (including your junk folder).

Accepting your offer

You will need to accept your offer of accommodation before its expiry date in order to confirm your allocation for the next academic year. The offer expiry date will be clearly specified in the offer letter.

Once you have accepted the offer you have formed a contract which is binding and you will not be able to give notice on the room unless you withdraw from the University.

Intermitting students

If you have withdrawn temporarily from Essex (intermitted) during the first term of the first year of study and decide to return the following academic year, you may re-apply for accommodation.

How to apply

Contact us in January of the year in which you intend to return to your studies.

Unable to secure University accommodation

If you're unable to secure University accommodation you have the option to live locally in privately owned rental properties. The Students' Union's house-finding service SU Homes will be able to help you find the perfect place to live.

SU Advice can offer information about tenant rights and responsibilities, about repairs, repossession, eviction, harassment by landlords, contracts, deposits and much more.


You will be required to make a £250 prepayment (which will be deducted from your first terms rental fees) in order to accept your offer.

You will be able to make this accommodation prepayment by credit/debit card as part of the online acceptance process. If you do not make this prepayment during your online acceptance, you will be able to pay credit/debit or UK cheque, in person at the Cash Desk in the Silberrad Student Centre.

Please do not try and pay your accommodation prepayment now. It will only be required when you accept your accommodation offer. Full instructions on paying your accommodation prepayment will also be given in your offer letter.

The deadline to request to cancel and receive a refund on your prepayment, is 1 September 2023. You can still request to cancel your offer after this date but no refund will be offered.

Find out more about paying for your accommodation.

If you have a debt to the University

Students who have a debt to the university will not be made an offer of accommodation until the debt is cleared. You will be notified if this is the case and be given an opportunity to make payment to clear this debt.

If this is not received then we may not be able to proceed with your application.

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Essex Sport membership

For students applying for accommodation in Colchester in 2022/23, we’re including an Essex Sport Silver membership package within your rent. See what's included within the Silver student membership package.

Find out more
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Terms and Conditions of Residence

Our terms and conditions give details of the terms of your tenancy agreement. By accepting a room when it is offered you are accepting these terms and conditions and you will be entering into a legally binding contract.