This article looks at a number of different options available as accommodation for students and the kinds of things you should consider before deciding on which to pursue.
Accommodation for Students Studying Away From Home
Part of going to university is experiencing new aspects of student life, including living on your own. While not all students move away from home to study, many do. For those students going to school far from home, university presents the first opportunity to live away from home for extended periods of time. Accommodation for students is an important consideration when moving away because finding the right option for you means looking at the costs involved, the distance from school, and the kinds of amenities available to you. Also, you’ll probably want to live with or near your fellow students to make the most of your student life. You should make sure you have a strong understanding of your options before you decide where you are going to stay.
The Various Options Available as Accommodation for Students
Usually the most attractive option, on-campus residence provides students with housing on or near their respective campus. In most Canadian universities, first-year students have guaranteed residence placement if they choose to apply for it. This is meant to give these new students an opportunity to live close to school with their fellow students without having to worry about finding alternative housing in an unfamiliar city.
On-campus housing also allows students to ease into life on their own, as most residences have some form of food plan as well as laundry facilities and included utilities. Students also get to live with their fellow students, meaning they can make the most of the social aspects of university with people who are in the same situation.
This kind of accommodation for students can be pricey, especially compared to some of the other viable options students may be able to find. On-campus housing is best suited to first-year students, and returning students are often encouraged to find alternative accommodations.
After their first year, most students move to secondary accommodations, usually to a private residence or apartment farther away from campus. Whether they moved out of necessity (due to not being able to get into residence again), cost, or personal preference, students living off-campus have different options available to them, along with different things to consider.
The first consideration is cost. Because they will be paying for housing on top of tuition, as they did in their first year, students need to be mindful of how much they can afford to spend on their housing costs. Luckily, living off-campus affords you more control over your housing costs than living in residence. Because you aren’t necessarily tied down to one location, you can shop around for off-campus student accommodation and evaluate the amenities you want with what you are willing or able to pay. Another thing to consider is the added cost of living off campus: transportation, utilities, food, and entertainment. Off-campus housing means that, even when you are splitting your bills with your housemates (if you have some), you may be paying as much or more overall than you would if you were in residence.
There are other, less common options available to students based on where they are studying. Some schools have off-campus residences that offer similar amenities as their on-campus counterparts. Many of these residences are reserved for specific students, like those in higher years, in specific programs, or in certain levels of study. Other schools, such as military colleges or academies, have mandatory communal housing, so students are usually given no other option.
International students can sometimes get special accommodations or enroll in special programs that help make sure they have a place to stay. Because these students are travelling from their home country to study, it’s even more important that they have adequate housing when they arrive.
There are special programs available that give university students the opportunity to study in another country as part of their program of study. For instance, international business students are sometimes given the option of spending their last year of study working in another country as a kind of practical experience. These programs give students access to accommodations out of necessity, and can be a great way to extend your experience outside of the classroom in a meaningful way. Of course, relying on this kind of system for accommodation is impractical at best, but students looking to move out of their current accommodations may find this option even more enticing.
Accommodation for Students: Making the Decision
Regardless of where you decide to stay, you should always be sure you pick the option that’s best for you. Whether you’re looking for social life, proximity to campus, or the most cost-effective residence, there is an option available for you. Finding accommodation for students is a matter of weighing your options and your budget and finding out what accommodations best meet your needs.