Studying abroad is a significant, life-changing event that necessitates a significant amount of preparation and research. Applications, finances, credit transfer, and, of course, where you will live are just a few of the things that students like you who want to study abroad must think about. There are several factors to consider when looking for study abroad housing, including the following:
- Housing Options
- Lease Length
It may seem like a lot to consider, but looking at these factors will help ensure you choose the best housing option for you as you study abroad.
1. Housing Options
Your time abroad will provide a variety of housing options, just as studying in your home country does. Here are some of the most popular housing options for study abroad students:
Many university students prefer to live in college dormitories (also known as dorms or residence halls). Many universities offer on-campus housing for students, often in shared rooms or living areas like bathrooms and kitchens. Because bathrooms are frequently shared by an entire floor, many residence halls have single gender floors.
Because on-campus housing is in high demand, obtaining a spot can be a difficult task. It’s a convenient option because most of the students who live there are in their first year of university and looking to make new friends, all utilities are included in the overall rent, and it’s close to all of your classes. Other options may be a better fit if you are a graduate student or need more space for yourself.
Many colleges and universities allow study abroad students to move into resident halls for the first few days of their arrival during orientation and then decide whether or not to stay. Please check with your school to see if this is the case!
Room, Apartment, or House
There are numerous houses and apartments near universities around the world that cater to the needs of students. Landlords near schools are aware of their market and may even provide furnished accommodations with individual student rooms. Utility costs are not typically included in rental prices, so check before signing a lease. Students can have as much or as little privacy as they want when renting a room in a house or apartment while studying abroad. Use a reputable company that verifies their rentals when renting an off-campus room or apartment. StudentRoomStay is a good starting point for your search.
Living with a Host Family
Universities frequently collaborate with local families to provide housing for study abroad students, whether short or long term. Families with spare rooms in their homes frequently rent them out to students. This can be a good option for international students because it can help them overcome homesickness and immerse themselves fully in the culture. If this is an option you want to consider, contact your university for recommendations.
2. Lease Length
Your lease is the agreement that allows you to rent your home. On-campus housing typically has a semester or academic year lease, whereas off-campus housing has an annual lease. In some cases, landlords will allow renters to rent for shorter periods of time while still requiring a few months’ commitment.
Knowing the length of your lease is important because you want to ensure that you will have a place to live for the duration of your study abroad while not paying rent. Remember that breaking a lease usually comes with a fee; find out what that fee is and if it still applies if you need to return to your home country.
Consider how easy it is to get to and from campus from the locations you’re considering when looking for housing while studying abroad. Will you be able to walk or ride your bike, or will you have to take public transportation? If you must take public transportation, you must factor in the additional time and money. Another thing to think about is whether living further away from campus will make you less likely to participate in extracurricular activities or attend classes.
Examine the businesses in the area where you’re thinking about relocating. If key businesses such as a grocery store and a post office are not nearby, make sure there is access to public transportation or another alternative.
You must decide whether or not to live with roommates. Whether you’re sharing a room, an apartment, or a house, you should be prepared to live with other students and give up some of the privacy you’re used to. There are frequently online university boards that connect students with other international students or people in your same degree program, so you can get to know people before the academic year begins and find a potential roommate if necessary. If you decide to live with strangers, try to contact them before moving in to introduce yourself and manage your expectations.
Don’t forget to look into the safety of the area you’re interested in. You’ll want to feel safe in your surroundings, whether you’re at home or out on your own. You can find suggestions for accommodation locations by contacting student guidance or searching for previous student experiences online. Early consideration of your priorities will help you have a better college experience.
Where to Find Study Abroad Housing
Where do you start looking now that you know what to look for? It is critical to rely on a reliable source that not only caters to study abroad students and their needs, but also considers physical and financial safety.
Contact your university to begin your search for study abroad accommodations. On-campus student housing is typically covered in a section of a university’s website that includes pricing, photos, rental duration, and other pertinent information. Universities can also point you in the direction of common, safe areas around campus where students choose to live if you’re looking for off-campus housing.