Executive Education

Tips for Finding Student Accommodation in Australia

Sydney, Australia - March 6- View down Pitt St towards Sydney harbour Bridge in Sydney CBD on March 6th, 2017.

Australia is one of the most student-friendly destinations in the world. But, that does not mean that everything is a cakewalk here. Accommodation may be a challenging area for students coming here to study and spend a good number of years of their lives. As students, we cannot afford to spend too much on everything, and there is an urgency to balance our expenditures. Without a doubt, accommodation takes up a significant portion of our budget—so there is no way you should go easy on it.

Famous for its top-ranked universities and overall well-development atmosphere, you will always have some or the other leads on student accommodation. However, we are going to talk about a few of them over here. Finding accommodation in Australia could become a whole lot easier if you take into account a few pointers.

I have 5 of them for your consideration. So, let us take a look at what we have here.

  1. Always start a month ahead
    One piece of advice I would give to all is to always start a month ahead. You have made it to an Australian university? Great. But, you don’t know Australia yet. You may have read dozens of articles about it and about how accommodation works here, but you still don’t know enough. Why? Because you are not here! Experiences differ significantly when you are actually visiting the country. You should come to Australia a month before your term begins. Find a room, settle down, understand the culture, and whatnot. In fact, even if you have chosen your accommodation from your home country, you should not finalize it until you have it seen personally.
  2. Off-campus or on-campus?
    Generally, Australian universities require the first-years to stay on-campus. Of course, there may be exceptions. Honestly, if you are nervous about your stay, you should consider staying on campus for a while until you have got a hold of the things around you. In your second year, you may want to move out. Rent an apartment and secure privacy and greater amenities. Those of you who are tight on a budget should go for on-campus facilities because a lot of expenses get cut down because of the proximity to the college. For off-campus stay, unless you have enough resources you should consider getting a flatmate to split your bills with.
  3. Homestays can also be an option
    While homestays are not as popular as other options of accommodation, they can be a viable option in case you are looking for a more authentic cultural experience. In a homestay, you get to stay with a native family, share experiences with them, and understand the local culture better. There are proper websites which offer homestays and you can choose whether you want a shared or single room. Depending upon your choices, you will be charged. Homestays are slowly gaining popularity in the country, and if you don’t mind staying with a proper family, then homestay is an excellent option.
  4. Find a flatmate
    I know I have already talked about it but there needs to be more discussion on it because a flatmate can literally ease your financial burden. Renting an apartment surely gives you a breath of independence but it comes at a cost. An extremely strenuous task it is to maintain an apartment, you should strongly consider finding a flatmate. Contact the student help forum at your university and they should be able to find you a flatmate. If not, ask your friends or batchmates for assistance. But, once you have a flatmate, most of your expenses will be cut by half. Australia is an expensive country to live in; from groceries to transportation, you will end up spending too much anyway. So, it is wise to cut down expenses in areas where possible.
  5. Know your rights
    One of the first things you should apprise yourself of is tenant rights. From renting an apartment to moving out, there are laws, rules, and regulations in the country which you should know thoroughly. In case you are unsure of your rights and remedies, then you should contact any of the many forums operational in the country such as Consumer Affairs Victoria, WA Department of Commerce and Tenancy WA, Tenants’ Advice Service, Tenants Advice & Advocacy Services NSW, and The Tenants’ Union of Tasmania.

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Anna Papadopoulos
Anna Papadopoulos is a senior money, wealth, and asset management reporter at CEOWORLD magazine, covering consumer issues, investing and financial communities + author of the CEOWORLD magazine newsletter, writing about money with an enthusiasm unknown to mankind. You can follow CEOWORLD magazine on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or connect on LinkedIn for musings on money, wealth, asset management, millionaires, and billionaires. Email her at info@ceoworld.biz.