Frequently Asked Questions
The questions below are often asked by students and their families regarding University managed housing, and general renting in the Wollongong area.
University Managed Housing
- When do I have to apply for accommodation? Accommodation Services continues to experience an increased demand from students wishing to live @ UOW. Due to this high demand, we strongly recommend that you apply to live @ UOW as early as possible. Applications are accepted throughout the year and there is no set cut off date. All applications must be made online at the following site: Apply Now. There is a non refundable application fee that must accompany the application for accommodation.
- Should I wait to get an offer from the University before applying for accommodation? The short answer is "NO". Do not wait until you receive a confirmed place of admission to the University of Wollongong. If you are thinking of attending the University of Wollongong, complete your accommodation application when you apply for your course. The application fee is a comparatively small investment compared to the cost of searching for accommodation after you have commenced your studies.
- How do I apply? You may apply online at http://apply-accom.uow.edu.au/.
- Is the application fee refundable if I change my mind or don’t get a place at the University of Wollongong? No. The application fee covers the costs associated with processing your application.
- What are my chances of getting a room in the University residences? There is a growing trend of more applications than there are places available. The University cannot guarantee housing, and an application is simply that – an application. It does not mean that you will automatically get a room. There are a number of other options to consider. Please check the website regularly for information about these options or contact Accommodation Services. You can also contact our Housing Officer for information about private, rental and shared accommodation (please see information below on this page). The University of Wollongong has accommodation agreements with some of its partner Universities overseas. Students from these Universities who are participating in Study Abroad or Exchange programs should check with their advisors about accommodation agreements.
- If my application is successful, will I get my first choice? The residences strive to place applicants in their first choice for housing. This is not guaranteed, as places are limited, and applicants who have lived in the residences before may get preference. If you are not placed in your first preference, your application is moved on to your second preference.
- Can I change my preferences? Yes. You may change your preferences for accommodation by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You need to be aware that a request for change does not automatically mean you will be placed in your preference.
- When will I know if I have a place in University Accommodation? Offers for applicants who are returning to the Residence(s), and offers for first time International applicants are usually made in mid December. This may vary slightly from residence to residence. Offers for new domestic applicants are generally made in January, at approximately the same time that course offers are made. Offers are ongoing up until the commencement of the housing contract and are made at the discretion of the Student Residence Manager.
- Do I have to have an interview? None of the residences require applicants to attend an interview.
- What can I have in my room? Residents are encouraged to make their rooms comfortable. If you are made an offer for accommodation, you will be given a list of essentials that you will need to bring with you. Feel free to decorate with posters, photographs of family and friends, or indoor plants. You may have a small bar fridge in your room, your stereo or computer. You may not paint the room, or drive nails, screws or hooks into the walls/fixtures, or use sticky tape.
- Can I have pets? No. Pets are not allowed for hygiene reasons. Goldfish may be considered, but you should seek advice from the staff at the residence you live in.
- Are there security issues that I should be aware of? Should your application for accommodation be successful, you will be living in an adult community, and with that comes some responsibility. Your own personal security and often the security of your unit mates and/or roommate should be something you consider carefully. The onus is on the resident to keep his or her bedroom door and window locked whenever s/he is not in the room. Unit entry doors should be locked when residents are not at home. Residents living in apartment style University accommodation should reach an agreement with unit mates regarding issues of security.
- What are the costs, and how do I pay my fees? Please see the appropriate section of our website for information regarding fees and payments.
- Will I have a phone and internet connection in my room? Not all rooms have individual telephone connections. Please see the section of the website that is appropriate to the residence(s) you are considering. Refer to IT Services in Residences
- Do I have to move in at the contract start date or can I move in after? The reason we ask students to consider moving in prior to the commencement of coursework is so that they can settle into their rooms, meet their new neighbours and flatmates all with a view to be settled by the time that study begins. When the course work starts there is very little time to do anything else, so getting used to the residences, establishing friendships and getting to know the transport and other facilites around the residence and uni can be done prior to classes starting. It provides a beneficial start to any students that decide to move in earlier to either O-Week or classes starting.
Private Rental Accommodation
The Housing Officer is available at Student Central, Building 17 to discuss any questions you may have about private rentals in Wollongong. You can make an appointment to see the Housing Officer via email and for more information go to the New Student Information Page. It is important that you are well informed before signing up for any properties and you should also read the Department of Fair Trading - Renting a Home information which is available Online in the English version, or in the other community languages.
- When should I start looking for private rental accommodation? If you want to live in private rental accommodation, you should plan to arrive in Wollongong around the middle or end of January. Most rental properties are let by the end of February. If you are commencing in second semester, then plan to arrive between the middle of June and the end of July.
- What is the standard lease time frame? The majority of leases are valid for 12 or 6 months, and have a continuing agreement clause. This means that it is not necessary to renew the lease after the initial six months if both the landlord and the tenant are in agreement. Under the terms of a continuing agreement, the lease will run from week to week, or fortnight to fortnight - but you should check with your landlord or real estate agent.
- Can I leave before my lease expires? You should give your landlord or real estate agent notice to quit, which is a letter advising that you want to vacate the premises. Generally, there is a penalty for breaking the lease, and you may be required to pay rent until a new tenant is found.
- Do apartments/units come with furniture? Some rental properties may be partly or fully furnished. The majority are not furnished, and you will need to supply your own furniture.
- What do I pay for? You need to be prepared to pay: Bond (this is usually 4 weeks rent + 2 weeks rent in advance), electricity and gas connection fees, and any subsequent bills, telephone connection fee and any subsequent bills, cleaning costs when you vacate the premises. You will also be required to pay for any repairs for damages caused whilst you are living in the property.