Starting university life can be confusing. We are often asked many questions about accommodation by students and their families, and below we have listed these most commonly asked questions and our answers regarding University managed housing, and general renting in the Wollongong area.
When do I have to apply for accommodation?
We suggest you apply as soon as possible as you will have a better chance of receiving your preference. Remember, to be eligible for the Accommodation Guarantee, you must apply online by the deadline set. There is a non-refundable application fee that must accompany the application for accommodation.
What are my chances of being offered accommodation in the University residences?
Provided you meet the conditions, we can guarantee you a place in the residences. We strongly encourage you to apply as early as possible as you will be more likely to receive your preference.
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 can apply online using any of the Apply Now links.
What happens regarding accommodation if I defer my offer to study at UOW?
If you haven‘t applied for accommodation then we suggest you wait to accommodation applications open for the year that you are intending on studying in, and then apply for accommodation. If you have applied for accommodation and have not received an offer, then you should make contact with accommodation services to advise us of your plans. You will need to re-apply for accommodation when applications are open for the year that you are intending on studying in. Please email us to let us know. If you have applied for accommodation and have received an offer, then you should allow the offer to lapse. You will need to re-apply for accommodation when applications are open for the year that you are intending on studying in.
Is the application fee refundable if I change my mind or don’t get a place at the University of Wollongong?
The application fee is not refundable. It covers the costs associated with processing your application.
If my application is successful, will I get my first choice?
While we will do our best, we cannot guarantee that you will receive your preferred residence. Students may be placed temporarily in partner or affiliate accommodation where they will receive UOW staff support.
When will I know if I have a place in University Accommodation?
Once UAC offers have been released, those offered a place at UOW will receive confirmation of their accommodation offer and information on how to accept it. Students are asked to keep a close eye on their email as we will be sending offers this way. Please be sure to check your junk mail folders in case our email lands there. Offers are sent via email so you MUST keep a close eye on your emails throughout the latter part of the year.
International students will be offered accommodation AFTER they receive their Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) to study at UOW. Accommodation offers for the following year will commence in December. Offers are sent via email so you MUST keep a close eye on your emails throughout the latter part of the year.
Do I have to have an interview?
None of the residences require applicants to attend an interview.
Which residences are suitable for families?
Graduate House and Bangalay have suitable accommodation for families in couple studios, two bedroom units, and three bedroom units. Couple studios are allocated with preference to a couple sharing a double bed (no children). Two bedroom units are allocated with preference to a couple with one or two children. Couples with more children should consider the three bedroom units. Three bedroom units are allocated with preference to a couple with three or four children. For more children, please seek prior permission from Accommodation Services. Family room (i.e., two and three bedroom units) in Bangalay and Graduate House are primarily designed for families with children and these applicants will be given preference over others.
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 also have a stereo or computer. You may not paint the room, or drive nails, screws or hooks into the walls/fixtures, or use sticky tape. Different residences have different requirements, please consult the handbook for the residence that you are moving to, or contact the residence office if you are unsure.
Can I have pets?
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?
The residences are 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?
Your weekly fee covers your internet quota, electricity, water and gas. All residences are fully furnished, however please check with your individual residence to find out what additional items you may need to bring with you. Please see the Fees and Application page on our website for information regarding fees and payments. Once you receive an offer, you will be required to pay a residential pre-payment fee of $500 which is non refundable. This fee is credited to your account and goes towards your rental charges. Along with your residential fees you will be required to pay ancillary fees. Please see the Schedule of Fees for more information.
Are there any scholarships available, and when should I apply?
There are a number of equity and one community accommodation scholarships available to undergraduate students. More information can be found on the UOW Scholarships webpage.
Will I have internet in my room?
All students living in the UOW residences have access to quota free wifi. All internet services are provided by UOW. Please see the section of the website that is appropriate to the residence(s) you are considering.
Do I have to move in at the contract start date or can I move in after?
The room that you are offered is reserved for your use from the contract start date. 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 facilities 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.
Is there parking available?
There is limited parking available at Graduate House, Kooloobong Village and Campus East. Permits are available to purchase in late January each year, via a random ballot. Please contact your residence for more information.
The Housing Services Coordinator is available to discuss any questions you may have about private rentals in Wollongong. You can make an appointment to see the Housing Services Coordinator 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.
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.
How do I start a tenancy?
There is lots of information available on starting a tenancy, and what is required of both the tenant and the landlord. It is very important that you have all the information and know what is required and appropriate when you are first seeking a rental or share house accommodation contract. Visit the Tenant's Union website for the latest information, or contact the Housing Services Coordinator for information and assistance.
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.