Types of off-campus accommodation
Home board means sharing the home of a local person or family. The host offers you a fully furnished bedroom in their house and the shared use of their facilities. Utilities such as gas and electricity are included.
Some students like home board because it lets them meet people in the community, and many become part of the family. It is particularly popular with international students.
Some home board hosts offer full board, which means that they provide all meals. This is ideal for students who do not enjoy cooking. Costs range from A$100 to A$200 or more per week. Other hosts offer part-board, which means that they provide only some meals. Costs range from A$85 to A$140 per week.
Hostels generally offer a small furnished room with access to shared bathroom, kitchen and equipment, laundry, lounge and recreational facilities. Gas and electricity costs are usually included. Short- and long-term accommodation is available. The cost starts from about A$35 per night. Hostels are often privately run.
Rooming Houses are privately managed houses in the community offering short-term and long-term accommodation for community members, workers, and students. The cost usually includes amenities and internet use, offering private bedrooms, with shared kitchen, dining, lounge, bathrooms, laundry, and living areas. Costs range from $130 to $170 upwards and requires a signed agreement.
Student Houses are privately managed houses in the community, offering long-term accommodation (preferably minimum of one year) for students. All amenities and internet are included in the cost, private bedrooms, with shared kitchen, dining, lounge, bathrooms, laundry, and living areas. Costs range from $145 to $170 upwards, and requires a signed agreement.
The cost of private rental accommodation varies from suburb to suburb. Rent tends to be more expensive the closer you are to the University. You can expect to pay from A$150 upwards per week for a one or two bedroom unit or flat, and between A$180 and A$270 upwards for a two- or three-bedroom house.
Some students prefer a place where they don’t need to maintain a garden. Some pay A$5 to A$10 per week extra for garden maintenance.
It is worth checking that there is an inexpensive form of heating for cold winter months. Gas heating is generally cheapest.
If you rent a vacant house, set up costs will include:
- connection fees for utilities (phone, gas and/or electricity)
- bond (see Renting rights and responsibilities)
- two weeks rent in advance (see Renting rights and responsibilities)
Your bond is refunded at the end of your lease provided the conditions of your bond are met (e.g. there is no money is owing, you have given the required notice and you have caused no damage to the property).
Share accommodation means renting a house or unit with other people. It may involve moving into an already established household. Students who choose this option are often looking for a more independent life (doing their own cooking, etc.) with the advantage of sharing the costs with others.
Before you decide if a particular shared house is right for you, you should ask about things like sharing of food and cooking, smoking, parties and noise, pets, small children, family and friends/partners. Share accommodation usually costs around A$80 to A$150 per week or more, plus utilities (gas, water, phone and electricity). There is usually a bond (see above).