Student Help

GETTING STARTED

 I have questions, what can I do?

Questions are inevitable, so if you need explanation about Buddy Flats or probably doubt about our services, our Help portal is the best way to get speedy and complete answers to any of your enquiries. Find the index below:

  1. If you have questions about Buddy Flats, please send us a message and we will reply Asap.
  2. If you have questions as regards the rooms and houses as shown our website, kindly visit our “About the listings” section.
  3. If you have questions on booking with BuddyFlats, visit our “Booking” section.
  4. If you have questions about payments, then visit our “Payments” section.
  5. If you have questions about our reviews, visit the “Reviews” section.

What is BuddyFlats?

BuddyFlats is an online marketplace for students in Barcelona who needs a place to stay/leave when they come to study in their universities/colleges.

We’ve got you covered, if you are going for a semester abroad or probably doing an internship or a project in an entirely different country or you are just simply moving to another city, you can easily and always find and book a place to stay through our website portal.

We have a lot of verified properties in major student cities. Our booking process is done mainly online and can also be done months in advance this enables you to secure accommodation at a city you haven’t arrived to yet, and don’t even know.

For more information visit our website at http://www.buddyflats.com

How do I find a place to stay?

In order to find a place to stay, you need to navigate to www.buddyflats.com, and then write down the city, college/university or neighborhood that you wish to live in on the website’s search bar. Add the date of your move-in and move-out, navigate and click the Search button.

You will as well filter your search by the budget or according to definite criteria or probably use our map to search for accommodation by location. Using this function will make finding a place that fits your requirement and taste or needs faster.

If I’m not a student can I use BuddyFlats?

Definitely you can!

You are free to use BuddyFlats even if you are not a student. A number of our places are reserved for students alone, so ensure you always check the information available on our website for every listing.

If you are unsure of what to do, please refer to our contact us page

Remember to as well mention the listing reference when you do so.

ABOUT THE LISTINGS!

What does a maximum guest mean?

 Maximum guests are the highest number of people that the apartment, property or room you are looking at can contain or house.

Are my friends allowed to me visit during my stay?

You can check this in each listing, to see if the landlord allows visitors and whether Overnight guests allowed is ticked.

If in the listing, this feature appears with a question mark “?” please refer to our contact us page if you would like us to.

The minimum stay refers to the lowest number of nights the accommodation provider accepts per booking – please be conscious of the fact that, BuddyFlats minimum nights is 28, but for Barcelona, the minimum stay is 32 days.

What does the 24 hour safety period mean?

At BuddyFlats, we ensure that the pictures and other information you see on our website represent precisely what you will find when you arrive at the home.

In the most unlikely event, if by any means what you see on our website is quite different from where you were given; please inform us as soon as you can, so that we can withhold the rent payment while we start our investigations. In this case, you have 24 hours to reach us through our contact us page, you should as well attach proof (photos or video) which clearly indicates that the property is indeed different from what was advertised.
In order words, you should as well contact your Landlord to be sure he is given the chance to fix the issues you mentioned.

Please take note, in as far as it is 24 hours after your move-in date have passed, all the rent funds are transferred to the Landlord, but be rest assured, we will always make ourselves  available to guide and help you with any issues and doubts you have throughout your entire stay.

What does the Confirm Availability button mean?

Instead of a Request to Book button, in some offers you have a Confirm Availability button

The purpose of this button is that, if we haven’t heard from the landlord in a while, then we need to ensure the place is available for you to book.
In this case you need to:

  • ClickConfirm Availability;
  • Insert your move-in and move-out dates, and number of guests;
  • Navigate and ClickConfirm Availability once

Afterwards we will then confirm the availability with the landlord involved and get back to you ASAP.

 

DISCOVERING BUDDYFLATS

 Do I need to register on Buddyflats website to book a place?

Yes you need to register on Buddyflats to book.

It’s actually easy: just click Sign up on the top of www.buddyflats.com. You can then register by using either your Google or Facebook accounts or directly on buddyflats platform itself.

 Signing up at Buddyflats means that you will be able to do the following:

1) Save your own Favorites;
2) Enables you to have a profile with your bookings history and status;
3) Add your personal info to increase your chances of having a booking accepted;
4) Allows you to add your Preferences so that our team can help you with better efficiency.

 Can I filter the search results?

Searching and Choosing from thousands of available apartments and rooms can be a hard job, this is why you filtering your search would make it easier.

The search filters that are available to you on the search page are:

  • Move in and move out dates;
  • Rent type: are you looking for a whole apartment or just a room?
  • Budget: what’s the minimum and maximum you are willing to spend?

Do not forget to click Apply filters button.

BOOKING

The place I enquired is not available. Now what?

Sometimes, buddyFlats is not totally sure that the last obtainable dates provided by the landlord are 100% accurate. In order to protect you from booking places that are unavailable, we allow everyone to request for an availability confirmation.

After you have clicked on the button “Enquire Availability,” BuddyFlats lets the landlord know that you wish to book a place on those specific dates. After then, the landlord has up to 48 hours to respond. In case there is no response within the given time, we then consider the listing to be unavailable in that period.

“The place is not available”

If you receive an email saying “The place is not available,” it means that the landlord has informed us that it is either not available on the dates you need it or probably on any nearby date. Usually the landlord is asked to update the availability, so if you visit the listing the next time, it should be accurate.

After you have received this notification you have a few options:

  • There is a different date available

In few cases, the landlord replies that the place is “not available” on the specific date that you requested for it, but it could be available on a little different dates. In this case, we will suggest that you adjust your booking to this new date as an alternative, and then book the place.

  • Other available options

We suggest other similar listings which are available, when there is no option to book the place you asked for. However, we strongly recommend you follow these suggestions as they are our best matching properties.

  • A new search

At times, matching available offers with your previous choice might be hard. However, when something like this happens, we make it simple to begin a new search with your previous requirements.

The place I enquired is available. Now what?

Sometimes, buddyFlats is not totally sure that the last obtainable dates provided by the landlord are 100% accurate. In order to protect you from booking places that are unavailable, we allow everyone to request for an availability confirmation.

After you have clicked on the button “Enquire Availability,” BuddyFlats lets the landlord know that you wish to book a place on those specific dates. After then, the landlord has up to 48 hours to respond. In case there is no response within the given time, we then consider the listing to be unavailable in that period

“The place is available”

Good news, the landlord has replied and updated the availability of the place you asked about. It is now available for you to book! We recommend that you follow the link in the email and sending a booking request as well. However, keep be aware that, as the availability has just been updated, everyone else using Buddyflats.com will also see that this listing can now booked, so we recommend that you send a booking request as quickly as possible.

It’s also very important to remember that sending a booking request is not the same thing as confirming availability. Though the feedback from the landlord was positive, however, you still need to send a booking request in order to show interest in reserving this place.

My booking was cancelled. What happens next?

Assuming an unpredicted event happens to the landlord or its property, a booking might be cancelled. If this happens you’ll be notified straight away.

If a cancellation happens, you will be totally refunded on everything that you paid, including your first rent’s payment, Buddyflats’ service fee and any deposit whatsoever. Your funds should be back to your account within a few business days, depending on your payment option and bank account.

As we know it’s very essential to find a new place, so you have a few options:

  • Other available options

After a cancellation has happened, we try as much as possible to match your preferences (by checking the type of listing you have chosen before) and then we suggest other similar options, as well as available dates within your favorite or preferred period. We therefore suggest following these suggestions as they are our best similar properties.

  • A new search

Sometimes it’s hard to match (available listings) with your previous choice. If this happens, we make it very easy to start a new search with your previous conditions.

You can as well be contacted by a BuddyFlats team member because making sure you have a place to stay is our top priority

The place I chose is not available. What happens next?

Sometimes Buddyflats is not able to complete your booking request. This happens for a number of reasons, from the place being booked by someone else, to landlord not updating their availability in time.

Assuming you sent a booking request and the feedback says that the place you isn’t available, we’ll then inform your credit card company, either PayPal or even bank (depending on the payment method you have choose) to release the money back to your account, which will be available in few business days. In this case you will not be charged anything.

We fully know that what matters to you is finding an alternative. You will find a few options in the email you will receive:

  • Other available options

We’ll try our best to find you other alternatives that are also similar to the one you have choosing. BuddyFlats will match your preferences by taking a look at the place you chose, and then we suggest other related options which seem to be available on the date you need them. However, we recommend following these suggestions.

  • A new search

Sometimes it’s hard to match (available listings) with your previous choice. If this happens, we make it very easy to start a new search with your previous conditions.

Can I book more than one time with BuddyFlats?

You can book as many times as you wish with BuddyFlats.

Maybe your are booking for the second time and you found the ideal place with us, or because BuddyFlats was incapable of completing your booking, then you can always several requests as you want until you have the right and the perfect place.

If you have any doubt about our bookings, you can visit our Bookings section. If you have questions about what or why to pay, we have highlighted our frequently asked questions on our Payments section.

What is a booking request?

In order to book a place on the BuddyFlats website, you need to firstly send a booking request. This Booking Request does not mean the place you have choosing has been booked already: it just requested to book the place you want.

This implies that the landlord has been notified that you have made a request, which he needs to accept. Each landlord has up to 48 hours to respond to the request.

However, a landlord might respond positively: in this case we’ll send you an email you saying the booking request was accepted. On the order hand the landlord can respond negatively, in which case we’ll send an email to you saying you that the booking couldn’t be completed then we recommend a different option.

A booking request only takes two major steps to be completed:

  1. Complete your information

In order to take complete advantage of BuddyFlats’ product and service, we therefore recommend signing up for an account. The signup is a simple identity which can be done through Facebook, Google or email, our landlords require some additional information to assess the booking requests they get.

You need to add the following fields to their profile:

  • Date of birth – When were you born
  • Country of residence – Where are you currently residing
  • Gender – What is your gender
  • Purpose of staying – What will you be doing while staying at your new place

Students have asked us severally why we ask “purpose of staying”. One of our major commitments when dealing with our landlords across the world is being always transparent about who their tenants are, and one way of ensuring this is being able to tell landlords if the student is an Undergraduate, a PHD student or probably a summer intern. The aim and objective is to enable us to match you with a landlord that you’re going to get along with.

  1. First rent and service fee payment

The second thing is to submit the payment fee for your first rent and also for the one-time only service fee.

The first rent payment is therefore calculated based on the first 30 days from the start of your contract date. This date could be different from the date you move in; you may want to check precisely what days you’re paying for. This depends mainly on the contract type of your booking.

After submitting a booking request

As soon as our landlord responds to the request, you are instantly informed by email.

As regards the payment, we will not charge your card until the booking request has been accepted. For security measures, the payment funds are seized (not by BuddyFlats but by your Paypal account or credit card provider. In case the booking is accepted, your funds are then charged. In case the booking can’t be finished, the money will be sent back to your account, depending on your bank type, in a few days.

        PAYMENTS

 My payment is being processed. Now what?

BuddyFlats provides several payment options, from credit cards which covers VISA, MasterCard, VISA Electron, Maestro as well as American Express) to Paypal, then to local payment options like IDEAL which is (available in the Netherlands) and SOFORT which is also (available in Germany, Austria, Belgium, Netherlands and France).

However, Credit cards and PayPal payments are processed immediately, but all payments through SOFORT or IDEAL require an authorization from your bank. The authorization could take 2 to 6 business days to complete (and sometimes even longer, depending on your bank). For security measures, BuddyFlats can only give notice to the landlord of a new booking request after the bank authorization has been received. It is not necessary you do anything while your payment is being processed.

Perhaps you find your funds being withheld by the bank but an email was not sent about your booking request (which means your last email was regarding your payment being processed), this means BuddyFlats has not been notified by the bank.

I don’t have a credit card. How can I pay?

BuddyFlats wants all payments to be done in the online platform and through online payment providers; we also offer several alternatives payment options:

  1. Paypal
  2. Bank Transfer
  3. Debit Card

All 3 options can be used to send a booking request through BuddyFlats and does not require a credit card at all.

In what situations am I refunded?

When we cancel your booking due to an unexpected event:

You will be completely refunded on everything that you have paid for; this includes the first rent’s payment, BuddyFlats’ service fee and any other deposit. Your funds should be back to your account within a few business days, Depending on your payment option and bank account.

When you cancel your own booking:

In case you cancel your own booking after it has been accepted, the BuddyFlats’ service fee won’t be refunded. BuddyFlats is also not responsible for refunding a holding deposit, because this payment exists to protect landlords from cancellations

As regards the first rent payment, it will depend mainly on the cancellation policy that was applied on the booking request. However, Cancellation policies may vary between properties, but they fall mainly under 3 categories namely: flexiblemoderate and strict.

Do you provide invoices?

Yes, we provide an invoice of the service fee.

All you need to do is to submit your request and also include the request and booking ID.

What are all the payments I have to make to BuddyFlats?

 When booking with BuddyFlats, you will have to perform the payments listed below:

  • 1st month’s rent
  • one time Service fee
  • Holding deposit- if applicable.