University challenge

Condor Properties explains how freshers can blag themselves a life of luxury at university.

They might hide it well, but over the next few weeks your parents will be feeling emotional about their little cherub flying the nest. It will dawn on them that, despite the endless washing and the constant smell of adolescence, they are going to miss you.

Now, a shrewd student would take advantage of their parents at this difficult time and turn these emotions into creature comforts for their exciting new life. Frankly, there may never be a better time to milk the family credit card than now, but you must box clever. Here’s what you need and how to get it...

Home entertainment

When it comes to kitting yourself out for university, your parents’ priorities differ wildly from yours; they are thinking books and kitchenware, while you are thinking box sets and games consoles.

To get your parents singing from the same hymn sheet you will need to employ the carrot and stick approach; announce that you don’t want to be one of those students who parties every night of the week (the carrot), but claim you’ll need some good home entertainment to keep you away from the clubs (the stick).

Feather pillows and Egyptian cotton

Let’s face it; you won’t be getting much sleep in your first year of university. So the sleep you do get must be of the highest quality and budget bed clothes just ain’t going to cut it. What you need is feather pillows and the most luxurious linen known to humanity.

This stuff doesn’t come cheap but the justification is compelling providing you package it well. Sell it as an investment in your education or use a thinly-veiled bribe; how can they expect you to get a first if you’re not sleeping like royalty?

A new set of wheels

If you’ve had your eyes on a new road bike, but can’t afford a pair of cycle clips then fear not – this should be the easiest blag of them all. The arguments are compelling; not only will a bike enable you to exercise regularly – and ultimately enable you to live a longer, healthier life – but it will also save you a fortune on public transport. If that doesn’t convince them, say something poignant about the Olympic legacy.

High-tech hardware

Getting your mits on a high-spec laptop should be another easy win – you just need to put together a solid argument. First you need to lay the foundations; tell them about all the assignments you’re going to be doing and how hard you’ll be working. Then inform them you’ll need the hardware to match your work ethic. It needs to be fast, efficient and capable of storing lots of games, ahem, essays.

Supermarket vouchers

You can’t feed an essay-acing student any old muck you know. But before you pitch the idea of supermarket vouchers, draw up a list of moderately expensive “brain-friendly” dishes that you want to eat at university. Wax lyrical about their intelligence enhancing qualities before asking for regular vouchers to be sent to your university address. Parents prefer this to cash, because they know it’s being spent in the supermarkets and not the pub – however, they needn’t know it is being spent on crates of lager and Pinot Grigio.