Where should I look for accommodation?
Sophos has its global headquarters in the Oxfordshire market town of Abingdon, which is about seven miles south of Oxford.
Both Abingdon and Oxford have a good variety of rented accommodation, ranging from bedsits (single-room flats in a shared house) to complete houses.
Being a university town, Oxford is livelier than Abingdon. However, Abingdon (which is the oldest town in Britain) is a pleasant place to live and Sophos is within easy walking/cycling distance of the town centre.
How much will accommodation cost?
Property prices vary throughout Oxfordshire. Typically, renting in Oxford tends to cost about £100 more per month than elsewhere in the county.
As a rough guide to rental prices in Abingdon, you can expect to pay from £350 per month for a very basic bedsit in a shared house, £450 for a studio flat, £600 for a one-bedroom flat and £700 for a two-bedroom flat. Renting a house starts at £800.
What other expenses will I have?
When renting a property, you are not usually liable to pay for maintenance. This should be carried out, when needed, by your landlord or letting agent.
You will, however, be expected to pay (unless otherwise stated) for all the bills that result from renting a property. These usually include bills for gas, electricity, water rates and telephone use, where the amount payable is determined by usage. On top of these variable bills, you are also expected to pay council tax, a fixed monthly charge based on the value of your rented property.
How much is council tax?
As a rule, the annual cost of council tax is about the same as one month's rent. For example, council tax will cost about £900 per year for a property that costs £700 per month to rent.
Where should I start looking for accommodation?
A good place to start looking for accommodation, if at all possible, is in the local newspapers. The Oxford Times (Fridays) and Abingdon Herald (Thursdays) both have large property sections and are good sources of information. There will also be advertisements from local letting agencies (see list below). Properties leased through letting agencies are normally subject to a holding/finder's fee of about £150-250.
Local letting agencies
If you intend to buy a property, here are a selection of websites for estate agents who have Oxfordshire offices:
What can Sophos do to help?
Sophos is happy to provide you with bed and breakfast accommodation for your first 10 days with the company. We will book you into a guesthouse within walking distance of Sophos. If your search for suitable accommodation takes more than 10 days, then we will pay half the bill for your bed and breakfast accommodation for an additional five days.