Starting college? Tips on how to budget for rent

Starting college? Tips on how to budget for rent


Whatever your preferred living arrangement (a shared house or flat, student accommodation, or digs) there is a lot of choice out there this year. There is an excess of rental accommodation on the market right now. Landlords are screaming out for tenants, so you are in a good position to negotiate the rent.

However…while it is easy to say to ‘negotiate the rent’ some types of … accommodation such as onsite campus accommodation will usually have a standard rate / fee for all students. i.e. there is no room to negotiate here.

Before you put a deposit down or sign any lease remember to weigh up everything and ensure you”re getting good value for money – After all, you will be on a tight budget. When it comes to budgeting for rent, don”t forget all the other expenses you will have throughout your college life – food, books, clothes, socialising, travel etc. You need to weigh these up against any income you have – savings, parental support, part-time job, grant etc. Along with this to ensure that you are getting a good deal ask yourself a few questions:

  1. How large / spacious is my bedroom?
  2. Do I have my own bathroom or do I have to share?
  3. How many others are going to be living in the same property?
  4. Are bills included or exclude in the rent rate?
  5. Will have I have to pay water and bin charges?
  6. Do I have to pay for a TV Licence?!

Best advice is to visit a few places that are up to rent / to-let, that way you will get an idea of what you do and don”t like and figure out where you”d like to live. As we”ve said already even though the college offers are not out just yet, it”s a good idea to get ahead of the rest and start scouting for some where to live now.- Remember, first come = first served.

There are 5 comments for this article
  1. Design college at 8:13 am

    I did think there weren’t enough exclusives and artists but as a first time event the buzz was really good and given the attendance figures, it’ll be much easier to get more companies and artists involved next year.

  2. Mary Anne at 2:37 pm

    I know myself I wouldn’t be overly happy to be put in the situation where i’d have to take out a loan and be in debt. But I think the banks will have to set up a finance scheme as I think many students and future students would be in the same situation as yourself where paying huge fees would not be possible. It would be silly to bring in fees and not have the foresight to bring in a student loan scheme too otherwise this will deter many people going to college and then will result in possibly in lesser qualified work force and even more unemployed people – which is really is not a good idea right now!

  3. Desperate Student at 2:31 pm

    Thanks Mary Anne. I just hope that the banks will look favourably on me and other students who are in the same position as me. I suppose I will need to get my parents to guarantee any loan and then just live with the fact that I will be in debt.

  4. Mary Anne at 2:26 pm

    Hi Desperate Student! Dont worry too much about fees. I know times are definately tight but if they do bring in Student fees you will be able to take about a loan to pay for them. UK students pay fees through their college years and usually take out a loan to pay them. They then pay back the laon when they get their degree and have a job in their choosen field – I think that is the way the system will operate if they bring fees into colleges in Ireland.

  5. Desperate Student at 2:20 pm

    It will be very difficult to have any budget this year. Last year I had a part-time job but these are very thin on the ground right now. Also, my parents are also feeling the pinch right now so not sure they can even help. If they bring back in fees, that will be the final straw. I may need to consider leaving college to try to find a job (if there are any) or possibly deferring for a year or two. Does anyone have any other suggestions for funding my education apart from robbing a bank. Even that would be useless right now.

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