Room allocation at Newnham is done using a random ballot system. As you progress through College you get a better room each year, as you get to choose before the undergraduates in the years below you. It’s a slightly complicated system to understand, but second-years are allocated a random number in the ballot order, with that order reversed the following year (so if you’re bottom of the second-year ballot, you will be top in your third year). The same rent is paid for every room within your year-group, so cost is never a factor in your choice of room. So feel free to decide whether you fancy a room with a balcony, one with a walk-in wardrobe or one close to the Porters’ Lodge or Buttery.
Rents and charges
We have a different charging structure for undergraduate accommodation from that of many other colleges, in that we charge the same rent to all students in a year-group. There are two options: a termly contract, where your room needs to be vacated in the Christmas and Easter vacations, and a continuous contract where it doesn’t. For 2017-18 entrants, the charge for the termly contract will be £1784.77 per term and for those on continuous contracts it will be £2176.10.
This charge includes rent, background heating, wireless internet, personal belongings insurance and the kitchens and food subsidy known as KFC (Kitchen Fixed Charge, which enables us to provide subsidised meals to undergraduates). To help students on lower budgets meet these charges, Newnham offers a very generous system of student bursaries and rent subsidies to UK and EU students, and all students in financial need are encouraged to apply for these at the start of the academic year. For new students there are two one-off costs to budget for at the start of the year: a deposit or ‘caution money’ of £250, which is refundable (less any outstanding charges) after you have completed your course, and membership of the Newnham Roll, which is £59. This payment enrols you as a life member of the alumnae association, which currently has 7,500 members.