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How to be a Successful Student Landlord

Becoming a student landlord can be both a positive and a profitable venture, but only if you do it properly. When you're planning on renting to students, it pays to be prepared. If you're a landlord new to student lets, and you want to ensure that your newest endeavour is a success, here is some essential advice to help you on your journey, from tips on purchasing a suitable property to advice for finding your first tenants.

Do Your Research First

It's important to contemplate the complexity and hard work involved in managing a property business. Like any commercial endeavour, the general rules of running and marketing an enterprise apply. You will be required to invest time and capital in coming to understand your customers and then providing them with the products and services they desire at a viable price. Managing a profitable student letting business is a yellow brick road to riches: uncertain; fraught with dangers; and a lot harder to travel than it might first look. After hours, you'll need to familiarise yourself over and over with the ever mutable laws on tenancies and letting, and complete your accounts and tax returns. 

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How to Choose the Right Place to Live At University

Apart from figuring out finances, worrying about fitting in and stopping your mum from buying all the unnecessary kitchen utensils under the sun, finding the right place to live while at university can be an equally confusing and daunting task. There are a couple of different options available but it's important to consider them early and arrange them as soon as possible in order to get your first pick. Here are four of the main types and some key details that will help you to choose which place is right for you.

1. University Student Halls

One of the most popular choices for many students, university halls offer a great transition from home to independent living. All the costs of bills, internet and sometimes food if you choose the catered option, are included in a complete fee each term. However you'll still have to do your own laundry, wash your dishes and look after your room. Some rooms are en-suite, but many include shared bathrooms. It can be unnerving if you're moving in with five to ten other people that you don't know, but halls are a great way to make friends quickly and settle into your university together as everyone is in the same boat and you're likely to be quite close to campus.

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International Tension: Don’t Let the Sparks Start a Fire

In an important two-part piece (read part 1 here) Erik Redli looks at the state of Eastern Europe. In this second part, he looks at how small sparks of tension can be dealt with before they start a fire.

At the moment it might seem that tensions between Ukraine and Russia are only the problem of the ‘marginal parts' of Europe. However, the consequences could sully the whole community. Look at the protesters in Aachen in the video below during the speech by Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk. 

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International Tension: Europe Starts in Our Small Towns

In the first of a two-part piece, Erik Redli looks at the state of Eastern Europe and how learning lessons from the past have helped people move forward today. 

We might live in Europe but first of all we live on our own country, city or village. Therefore all European activity should start at local level. Last week I took part in the Charlemagne Prize ceremony in Aachen, Germany and this week I decided to attend a roundtable discussion in the town where I used to live as a child - Šahy in south-west Slovakia.

Šahy is a small town of about 9,000 inhabitants, two churches and a few bars where the people live at night. Because of its location on the borders, it has always been a gate to Hungary and a multicultural town with many foreigners and lorry drivers passing through and leaving rubbish. That's how we were introduced to empty Coca Cola bottles and McDonald's packaging.

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Charlemagne Prize 2014: Herman van Rompuy Brings Tolstoy into Russia Ukraine Situation

Erik Redli attended this year's Charlemagne Prize, and is bringing us a series of posts bringing out the key issues of the forum.

"Berlin is becoming a melting point of Europe." These were the words of John Holten, an Irish writer and translator living in Germany, at the European Karlspreis Forum 2014 in Aachen, Germany. For a few days, the whole of Europe focusses on Germany whilst Aachen hosts the traditional Charlemagne Prize ceremony. It rewards personalities that have fostered the process of ‘Europeanization' and this year's laureate was Herman van Rompuy, the president of the European Council.

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