An important aspect you must consider when preparing for university or TAFE* courses is accommodation. If you choose to go down the private housing route, you'll need, on average, to find around $70-$250 per week, so you want to get value for money. As such, you'll need to have your wits about you to ensure you get the right accommodation - something we aim to help you with here.
What Are The Different Types Of Student Accommodation In Australia?
As a university or TAFE* learner, you get to choose where you live, and you'll typically have a couple of options available to you. Firstly, purpose-built student housing is normally built around the college or uni campus. They can be either furnished or not, with kitchen/bathroom facilities being provided on a communal basis and utility bills being included.
Campus life isn't for everyone, so the option we've already discussed is private renting, which you'll have to go through an estate agent to obtain. Again, you'll often find bills are included in the rental cost - although not always - but it does afford you more freedom with regard to where you live.
What To Consider When Looking For Student Accommodation?
Other than the utility bill aspect we just mentioned, there are a number of other factors at play when trying to identify the right student accommodation. So, let's dive in and see what essential elements you need to be watching out for in your search.
- Availability - one of the most important things you need to factor into the process is availability - a variable that changes all the time. That's why savvy students don't let accommodation affect their academic and personal development by starting their search early. As such, it's wise to give yourself lots of time and start looking months before you're due to start your course.
- Type of Property - depending on your situation, you might need a particular type of student accommodation. Your decision will be guided by variables like how many rooms are needed and whether you want a flat or a house. The option you choose can influence the amount you must pay enormously, so you must ensure it's both a) affordable and b) suitable.
- Distance from Campus - it's great to have the independence of private housing when taking uni or TAFE courses, but you don't want distance from campus to cause issues. Even if you find the perfect flat or house that happens to be a little bit too far away from where you are learning, you're going to regret it quickly. That said, if the city you're in has good public transport, it becomes much less of an issue.
- What Size is the Deposit? - invariably, you'll be asked for a deposit when privately renting, which is taken to account for any damage that occurs to the property while you're staying. It should be no more than 4-5 weeks' rent up-front, so if they ask for more - it's a bad sign. Also, be sure to inquire about how easy it is to get back when you leave.
- Is it Furnished? - picture this nightmare scenario - you arrive with your fellow students to move into your new student housing, and you find no furniture, appliances or light bulbs! It might sound silly, but it happens, and you won't have a leg to stand on if you fail to notice it when signing your lease. Be sure to ask lots of questions - like what's included?
- Always View Before Committing - it can be easy to fall into the temptation of jumping at the first student housing you find available due to wanting to get it organised and out of the way. However, you shouldn't skip the viewing part of the process, or you could miss some pretty glaring issues that will impact you throughout your stay. Be smart and always view first become committing to anything.
The critical thing to remember is that the decision you make affects you for the term of your lease, so getting it right is vital. Of course, this is not an exhaustive list of measures, but if your takeaway from reading our blog is to be cautious and examine the finer details - it was worth reading.
Supplement Your Uni Or TAFE With A Micro-Credential, Online Short Course
Another great way to get off to a good start on your uni or TAFE* courses is to engage with OCA short courses online that allow you to build a knowledge foundation that will serve you well throughout your further education. Our CPD-Endorsed, video-based learning, is designed to make gaining new knowledge simple, straightforward and easy to fit around busy lives.
We're often told by our students that ours are the best online courses Australia can provide, and it's something we've worked hard to create. Check out our Student Study Demo to see just how immersive and well-supported OCA students are, or visit us at www.onlinecoursesaustralia.edu.au to see our entire course library that covers more than 20 different industries.
However, if you need to speak to us before enrolling, we’re more than happy to oblige. Just call 1300 611 404 to get through to our friendly team of advisors. Alternatively, email firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll respond as quickly as we can.
*What is a TAFE?
TAFE stands for “Technical and Further Education”. TAFE institutes are government-funded Registered Training Organisations (RTO's) that offer Vocational Education and Training relating to a specific industry or occupation.
There are other private (non-government funded RTOs) that offer accredited courses (just like TAFE).
Online Courses Australia has partnered with RTOs to offer RPL or CREDIT from selective Micro-Credentials towards RTO (accredited) courses. Look out for Accelerated Learning Pathway on our website.