Colleges and universities across the country have begun opening their doors to thousands of first year students in the past week, with a few still to start back for the college term. This huge influx of students brings thousands of new people to the cities of Ireland. And here we see the problem with the college accommodation. A large proportion of these students have moved out of home for the first time and are embarking on an exciting journey. There is so much to look forward to when starting out at college, but to ensure that it is experienced to the full we have put together some useful advice. The following blog post will make up the first part of a two-part series about starting off at college for the first time. It will be particularly pertinent to those moving out of home, but there are also some tips included for those that will be living at home while attending college. This first post will focus on the different types of accommodation, and how to secure them, and the next post will outline some tips for furnishing your college home.
Leaving home is an amazing opportunity that should be grasped with both hands, although it does take a level of maturity and organisation that you may not have needed when living under the comforting direction of your parents. You have now made your first steps into the big bad world of adulthood – kind of!
“There is lots of different advice that could be given to a first year college student, but we here at Storage World will focus on the areas that we know best. So if you are a first year college student who is moving out of home for the first time and college accommodation is a priority for you, then keep reading! You could use all the advice you can get – from choosing the best apartment to finding the cheapest college shipping services.”
There is so much to this move. And your accommodation situation may have a large bearing on the rest of your college experience. Therefore it is important to be prepared and have all the advice that you need to make good choices about your accommodation.
Firstly, if it is to the capital that you are heading, this journey may be a little more difficult… campus accommodation on the main university campuses are not in plentiful supply, and less so is rental accommodation. We have already put together a series of blog posts on the topic of student rental which you can read HERE.
If you do manage to secure a space on campus then lucky you! You are all set for a great year. For the prospective college students for next year who may be reading – it is vitally important to make a note of all the various dates that booking for campus accommodation becomes available during the year. All of the colleges and universities have different policies. It is a good idea to book into all of the possibilities on your CAO form as you can never be sure where you will end up! And don’t be alarmed if you are thousands of spaces down waiting lists as many of the people above you may not even be attending this university. If your campus accommodation requires an application form, then it is a good idea to make yourself as attractive as possible for a space on their campus – for example if you would not be opposed to sharing a room then you should state this, and even find a friend who may be willing to share with you. Sharing rooms are not everyone’s cup of tea – but many campuses will be happy to accept volunteers!
There are many other options if you do not secure a place on campus. These include renting a house or apartment with friends, renting a room in a rental accommodation, moving into digs or even considering commuting if you live within a hour of your college.
It is often difficult to secure rental accommodation by the time the CAO offers come out at the end of the summer – but it is not impossible and is probably the next best thing to living on campus if you can get somewhere nearby. Digs is also a really good option for a first year student and is often overlooked. It is a very safe environment and it suits certain students who may benefit from a small amount of adult guidance.
The take home messages here are to be on the ball when it comes to your college accommodation. It requires research prior to even securing your college course. Organisation is key.
So that’s it for the first part – now that you have your accommodation sorted, it’s time to learn how to live in it! – all to come in our next blog post.