Almost 59,000 students are this week receiving their Leaving Cert results and the countdown is on for the CAO offers to be released on August 15th.
Once offers have been received the frenzy of sourcing accommodation starts. This is something that has become even more challenging in recent years, for first-year students in particular, as there is such a short time frame between the CAO offers and the commencement of the desired course.
Choosing the right accommodation can make the transition to third-level so much easier and what is right for one student may not be right for another so here are a few tips to get you started.
What type of student accommodation is right for you?
On-campus Accommodation is a premium option and a certain number of spaces will be made available to students who have a disability or medical condition that requires them to be close to the campus. It can be expensive but the convenience and security offered are often worth it.
Student villages are a good option for students and parents who are security conscious but where the student also wants a certain element of independence. Student villages are usually within walking distance of the college or university, there is security on-site and access is usually with a key card. The grounds and communal areas have security cameras and are maintained and cleaned regularly. Students can choose from single rooms or sharing and have access to communal kitchens and living spaces to one, two and three-bed apartments. The costs are reasonable given the proximity to the college. Student Villages are a safe and easy way to make friends
Private rental is the route that many students take especially if a group of friends are all attending the same college and can rent a full house. Sharing with strangers can be daunting for first years.
Digs – the student term for renting a room with a family that often includes breakfast and dinner – is a good option for students who still want the security of being in a family environment. The prices are very reasonable given that meals are included. It can be difficult adapting to fit into the routine of a family that you don’t know and you don’t have the flexibility to eat what you want when you want but some students are happy to use ‘digs’ for the first semester until they have made friends and then move on to shared accommodation or into the student village.
What if I haven’t secured accommodation before I start college?
The initial frenzy for rooms will settle, usually 8 weeks into the term, with some students moving around or into alternative accommodation, so more options do become available over time. In the meantime, local hostels or budget hotels can be a good short term solution.
Top Tips for Students when looking for Accommodation
- Keep in touch with the accommodation officer at your college.
- Make sure you are on the waiting lists for the local student villages.
- Do not hand over a deposit to a private landlord without getting the keys and checking that they work.
- Take pictures of the accommodation and do a full inventory list so that there are no disputes when getting your deposit back.
Winters Property Management is the largest providers of student accommodation in Ireland with student villages in Galway, Athlone and Sligo. Our aim is to make your transition from home to college life as seamless and enjoyable as possible. Follow our Facebook page for more updates and advice.
We are delighted to offer students safe affordable accommodation for the 3-4 years it may take to complete their studies.
Visit our dedicated Student Accommodation webpage to check out all our options in Galway, Sligo and Athlone.