Deakin Logo

9 tips to help you find your new home

  • Blog
  • 4 min read
  • Posted April 2024

BURWOOD - SHORT STAY - IMAGE CAROUSEL - 2478 x 1396 - Outside Reception
BURWOOD - SHORT STAY - IMAGE CAROUSEL - 2478 x 1396 - Outside Reception

As you embark on this new chapter of your academic career, one of the first challenges you’ll face is finding suitable accommodation on our near Deakin. The prospect may seem daunting, but fear not! With careful planning and these helpful tips, you’ll soon find yourself settled into your new home away from home.


Just like in real estate, the golden rule of student accommodation is location. Do you want to roll out of bed into your morning classes, or do you cherish a short scenic commute that lets you clear your head? Consider:

  • Proximity to University: Look for accommodation that won't have you commuting for ages. A short walk or a quick bus ride is ideal.

  • Access to Amenities: Check if there are supermarkets, pharmacies, and perhaps some cafes nearby. A simple google search will help you see what is in the area!


When you're miles from home, feeling safe is non-negotiable. Research what safety measures are already in place by the accommodation provider, like will you have swipe access, a lockable bedroom, well lit footpaths and access to helpful humans around the clock.


The 'B' word—yes, Budget. This can be a buzzkill but think of it as your financial map. Accommodation costs vary wildly by location and amenities:

  • Rent: Consider whether utilities are included. Sometimes a higher rent may be worth it if it includes heating, water, and internet.

  • Hidden Costs: Deposit? Admin fees? Be sure to ask about any extra costs that might surprise you later.

  • Freebies: Everyone loves a freebie so make sure you ask what else is included in your weekly fee. If the provider offers free food nights and other social activities you're money will go a whole lot further.


Your accommodation will also play a huge part in your social life. Here’s what to ponder:

  • Student Residences vs. Private Housing: Residences might offer instant friends and social activities, while private housing can give you a quieter environment.

  • Cultural Mix: Interested in a cosmopolitan hub, or a place with students from your country? Decide what sounds like home to you.

Coming to res, you may be away from home and out of your comfort zone, but you are always surrounded with support, friendships and opportunities. I have met some of the most amazing people that I get to call my friends and I have had the opportunity to do things I would never have been able to do back home. - Liberty, Waterfront Resident


This is about the bells and whistles:

  • Laundry: On-site or nearby? You don’t want to trek miles with a bag of dirty laundry.

  • Internet: A solid internet connection is a must-have for study and entertainment.

  • Gym: If staying fit is your thing, check if there’s a gym nearby or one on premises.


Before signing any lease:

  • Contract Length: Some might tie you in longer than the school year. Make sure the lease works with your academic calendar.

  • Cancellation Policy: Life is unpredictable. Understand what happens if you need to bail early.


Since you can't visit in person:

  • Quality Check: Look for recent, clear photos or a virtual tour. The more visuals, the better to avoid unpleasant surprises.


What better way to get the scoop than from those who’ve lived there before?

  • Authentic Reviews: Look for honest reviews on independent websites or ask if the university has a forum or a Q&A board.


When in doubt, ask. No question is too small when you're about to decide on your home in a new country. Contact accommodation services, reach out to the landlord, or join a local student group to get insights.

Remember, choosing your international student accommodation isn't just about finding a place to sleep. It's about making a space where you can thrive, recharge, and possibly even binge-watch your favourite series in comfort after acing your exams. So take your time, use these tips, and get ready to make a confident, informed decision about where you’ll hang your hat (or your academic cap) abroad. Happy hunting!

Written by

Profile photo of author Angela Fragiacomo
Angela Fragiacomo Marketing and Communications Manager

With more than 20 years experience, 10 within the educational sector, Angela leads the marketing strategy at Deakin Residential Services and has extensive knowledge and application of how to engage and attract prospective domestic and international students, leveraging the growing range of marketing channels throughout.

Deakin Residential Services

Our purpose is to sustainably deliver an innovative and outstanding student accommodation experience.

Sign up to our newsletter

We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the unceded lands and waterways on which Deakin University does business. We pay our deep respect to the Ancestors and Elders of Wadawurrung Country, Eastern Maar Country and Wurundjeri Country where our physical campuses are located. We also acknowledge all First Nations Peoples that make contributions to our learning communities.

© Copyright Deakin University 2023. Deakin University CRICOS Provider Code: 00113B.