How to Find Housing in Australia for International Students - The A-Z Guide

    Updated on: 11 Aug 2022

    Australia is fast becoming one of the preferred international study destinations for Indian students who wish to study abroad. The country has seen a steady rise in the number of Indian students who study in Australia - from 11364 enrollments in 2002 to 108,292 enrollments in 2018. Some of the reasons why Indian students choose Australia to pursue their studies abroad are the huge range of courses available, post-study work permit, affordability, safe environment, and better chances of permanent residency. If you are one of the many Indian students who have got admission into an Australian university for higher studies, then finding a suitable student housing in Australia is sure to be on the top of your to-do list. Read ahead and know the A-Z about how to find the best accommodation in Australia.

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    Types of Australian Housing Available 

    Australia, like every country, offers two kinds of student accommodation to international students - on-campus accommodation and off-campus accommodation.  Let us take them up one by one and discuss in detail about each. 

    1. On-Campus 

    On-campus housing means accommodation provided by the university. Typically, on-campus accommodation is a convenient option as the classes, libraries, and accommodation are close to each other, most often within the same campus. This saves up on the traveling time. Though on-campus accommodation might be a tad bit more expensive, students have the chance to immerse themselves completely in the university’s life. Also, the university services will always be there to lend you a helping hand when needed. 


    • The types of on-campus accommodation vary as per universities, and students can choose from different types of universities based on their specific requirements and budget. Some of the types of on-campus accommodation for students in Australian Universities are halls of residences, apartments, student dormitories, residential colleges, etc. Most universities give students the option to choose between catered or self-catered on-campus accommodation. Students get most of the basic things in an on-campus accommodation - from a bed to table, storage options, study lamp, etc. Some universities also provide additional facilities such as towels, cooking utensils, blankets, access to Wi-fi, etc. Universities offer rooms with an attached toilet and washing facilities or a communal toilet and washing facilities. The cost of the on-campus accommodation varies as per different universities and depends on the city, the number of roommates, the kind of facilities being offered, etc. On-campus accommodation can cost students anywhere between $90 and $280 a week. 

    If you are a student who wants to apply for on-campus accommodation in Australia, we would advise you to apply for it at the earliest. Since the number of on-campus accommodations is limited at most universities, it would be prudent to apply for it promptly to get your desired accommodation. 

    2. Off-Campus

    In Australia, off-campus accommodation is a popular choice as it is cheaper and offers students more freedom, privacy, and a chance to explore the city.


    Students can opt for different kinds of off-campus accommodation in Australia. Listed below are some of the different types. 

    • Home Stay - This gives an international student the chance to stay with an Australian family. The cost of the homestay will vary, depending on the kind of room offered - single or shared - and is between AUD235 to AUD325 for a week. This kind of accommodation is mostly opted by international students who are pursuing a short-term course. Students can contact their university to get a list of approved homestay providers in the vicinity.
    • Rental Property - Many international students choose to stay in a rental property near their university. They can choose to either share it with their friends or stay alone. Most rental properties are rarely furnished, and thus students have to arrange for their furniture when choosing such an accommodation. Most rental accommodations in Australia cost between AUD 165 and AUD 440 a week. Students also have to deposit a security amount, mostly equal to a month’s rent, when taking up a rental property. You can also opt for a shared rental, the cost range is between AUD 85 and AUD 215.
    • Hostel or Guesthouse Accommodation - This kind of accommodation is cheaper than homestays or rental property, and students have to pay between AUD 90 and AUD215 a week. Also, students have to share the kitchen and bathroom facilities with others in this type of accommodation. 

    While looking for off-campus accommodation such as houses or apartments in Australia, students must always opt for a safe neighborhood. They should also remember to read all the ‘Terms and conditions’ carefully before signing the rental contract. Also, the students should pay the advance only after seeing the accommodation. 

    The Big Dilemma - On-Campus or Off-Campus Accommodation? 

    Well, this dilemma does not have a single answer. The answer to which kind of accommodation is better - on campus or off campus - depends on a student’s requirements and preferences. Some students might like to stay on-campus and get exposed to university life, while others may prefer to stay off-campus and enjoy more freedom to explore the new country. Though the decision is an individual one, we list down some factors that can help you decide. 

    • Check the proximity of your accommodation - This should be on the top of your list when deciding on the kind of accommodation you want. Staying on-campus will cut down on your travel time and expenses while staying off-campus will add to your travel time and costs. Thus, students who opt for off-campus accommodation must consider the distance of their accommodation from the university as well as the travel time, cost, and availability of public transport before finalizing one.  
    • Affordability - This should be another important factor in your check-list when it comes to selecting the correct accommodation. Once you have decided on your budget, search for options that give you maximum facilities within your budget. This is true for both on-campus and off-campus location. Students who prefer to have a single room will have to pay more than those who share a room with one or more roommates. Hence, decide on your budget and then choose. 
    • Existing student community- As mentioned earlier, staying on-campus will certainly help students soak in the university culture as they will have more chances of mingling with the student community that has students from all across the world. However, when opting for off-campus accommodation, this will not always be possible. Hence students might lose out on interacting with the student community after their classes. 
    • Facilities being offered - Students should also enquire about the amenities being offered in the accommodation. When selecting off-campus accommodation, they should check whether the accommodation is furnished or not. If it is not furnished then they should find out the cost of renting or purchasing the basic furniture and then factor it in the total cost of the accommodation. 

    Methods to Find Housing 

    • For getting an on-campus accommodation, students need to get in touch with their university in Australia and apply for accommodation as early as possible. 
    • For finding off-campus accommodation, students can also contact their university to get some advice on places which are suitable for students. Some universities even have an off-campus housing service that will help students find accommodation that suits their requirement.   
    • Students can also contact some trusted Online portals, such as Student Accommodation Association, Asia Pacific Student Accommodation Association, Unilodge, etc. to find suitable off-campus accommodation.

    Australia is known to be a student-friendly country, and we are sure that you will have a good time there. We wish you all the best in your study abroad dream. 

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