Welcome to Cambridge, a city where the real estate market is an oligopoly dominated by the 31 colleges, most of which are major landholders. This means that, with legitimate alternatives hard to come by, renting accommodation from College is often the best option. The majority of the College’s graduate accommodation consists of variably-sized rooms in Edwardian townhouses clustered on Harvey Road, St Paul’s Road, Gresham Road, and Glisson Road (google map to heart’s content). In fact, this is a relatively convenient location about 7 minutes’ cycle ride from the Old Courts (i.e. the main College hub), 5-7 minutes from the train station, and 7-10 minutes from the Sidgwick Site (where most Humanities faculties are located) and the Barton Road sports ground (where the College has its rugby, cricket, and football pitches and squash courts). There are also two grocery stores close by – Tesco’s and a Coop – whenever you need to get supplies, as well as a local ‘Farmer’s Market Shop’ on Lensfield corner that sells a variety of locally-produced vegetables, fruit, baked goods, cheeses, milk, tinned goods, meats, and smoked seafood (plus what are undoubtedly the best eggs in the city).

Rooms

The rooms are generally banded into two groups. The first is larger and therefore more expensive, the second smaller and less so; all are very livable, and the large ones are often unusually spacious. Each room comes furnished with a bed (usually double), desk and desk chair, desk lamp, wardrobe, bedside table, and book shelf (or two). The rooms share access to gyp rooms (small kitchens) or larger kitchens used by the whole house. The houses also have generous gardens in the back, and a fixed barbecue behind the MCR at 1 Harvey Road is available to all — as is the allotment behind 2 Harvey Road.

The College provides accommodation for graduates for the duration of their course (up to 3 years are guaranteed), with some accommodation set aside for couples/families (see below) or disabled students. Most students live on Harvey Road or its vicinity, halfway between the train station and the town centre. This amounts to an 8-10min cycle ride from the city centre.  All graduate houses have cooking and free laundry facilities, as well as bike sheds and backyards open to all residents — your room key also functions as key to the front door and garden door of your respective house.

Caius also offers accommodation for couples and for families, upon request. Contact the Accommodation Office for this. For more information about accommodation, please visit the College’s graduate accommodation page.

Cleaning

The College cleaners or ”bedders” will clean the kitchen and bathroom daily and will clean your room once per week. If you do not wish to be disturbed, place your rubbish bin outside your door before 9 AM and it will be cleared for you.

Couples and Families

Caius offers couples’ accommodation, including for those with children. However, these are limited in number and they are allocated on a first–come–first–served basis. Caius college is particularly notable for having 16 self-contained flats (9 in the Harvey Road precinct, 6 in Alice Cheng house, near the Caius boathouse, and 1 in Harvey Court), as well 2 houses on Drosier Road (just off Harvey Rd), available for graduate students living with their partners and/or families. These are very popular, and allocated by the Caius accommodation manager, Wendy Fox: accommodation@cai.cam.ac.uk. Do contact her if you have any questions, or for the latest list of available rooms with prices.

Generally, students with dependent children are prioritised (particularly for the houses, otherwise the large flats). For new students, tips to maximise your chances of securing a couples flat / house, tips are:

  • Reach out to Wendy early on accommodation@cai.cam.ac.uk expressing your interest; don’t be afraid to email again if you don’t hear back!

  • Try to meet your conditions of study as early as possible, as accommodation can only be formally allocated once this is ticked off.

  • When filling in the accommodation request web-form, once again write in the free-text comment box that you are very keen on a couples / families house/flat. You can also use that free-text box to specify other requests; e.g. that you would like to live in the same household as someone else. Wendy does read these comments and tries her best to meet requests.

For information on University or College and local childcare services, click here or here.