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Accommodation while living in Australia

Danford College does not offer any accommodation services (but can assist) and students are required to organize their own accommodation arrangements for their stay in Australia. Where a relative or friend is able to provide accommodation that is close to transport and within access to the College, students would be encouraged to take this option. It is recommended that your accommodation arrangements be organized prior to your arrival in Australia.

The Student Support officer can provide information, advice, and guidance on the types of accommodation services available to students prior to arrival in the case of a need to change arrangements whilst in Australia. The types of accommodation available in Australia are many and varied and brief descriptions of some of the options are listed below:

Home stay / Private Board

This is a common form of accommodation is where students live with an Australian family. Home stay or private board is where you live with a family, couple or single person/s in their own home.

There are many ‘Home stay Providers’ operating in Australia and these arrangement will vary from Full Board, Part board, or Board in Exchange. The most common arrangements for home stay will usually consist of a furnished room, two or three meals per day and bills (except telephone and internet). Some home stay providers may even do your laundry. The cost may be between AU $170 – AU $220 per week.

The family is generally chosen by the Home stay Provider and allow students an excellent way of settling into the country.

Hostels & Guesthouses

Generally these are temporary accommodation arrangements and are available from AU $25.00 per day to AU $400.00 per week. Prices will depend on shared facilities, meals provided, shared rooms, etc.

Private Leasing / Rentals

The rental market offers a wide range of housing options. Signing a lease on your own for an apartment, flat or house can offer you an independent lifestyle and privacy. You may also plan to stay in this property for the duration of your course.

It can however be very expensive if you choose to live by yourself, as you are solely responsible for the rental payments plus the connection fees for utilities and then ongoing bills. Generally tenants are responsible for connection and usage of water, electricity and gas. Tenants are also responsible for connection and payment of the telephone.

Rental prices vary according to the location and condition of the property. It can be useful to familiarize yourself with the average price of properties in the various suburbs around the University. Rental costs usually increase the closer the property is to the city centre and the University.

Living Costs

The information in this section outlines the estimated cost of living for an international student living in Australia. When calculating the costs of living in Australia students should budget for accommodation, food, health care, transport, books, clothing and entertainment.

This is only a guide to the living costs in Australia and these expenses will vary depending on the student’s lifestyle.

Accommodation Costs

Accommodation costs will vary from city to city and the following is an estimate of Melbourne accommodation.

Type of Accommodation No. of Weeks Weekly Rent / Board Range (A$) Estimated Total ($) Rent or Board and other expenses
Home Living at Home (Board) 52 $20 – $60 $7,200 – $9,600
Sharing Rented House (with 2 others) Close to City 52 $135 – $165 $18,100 – $24,400
Within 10 kilometres of City 52 $105 – $135 $16,400 – $22,700
Regional area 52 $60 – $80 $13,800 – $19,600
Apartment – One Bedroom One bedroom not shared 52 $235 – $285 $23,700 – $31,100
Hostel One bedroom – shared bathroom/kitchen 52 $155 – $190 $19,200 – $25,800
Home stay Living with a local family 40 $220 – $230* $14,500 – $16,700

* Usually includes most meals.

Rental property prices vary from suburb to suburb. Check www.realestate.com.au or The Age newspaper for the current cost of renting in Melbourne and Adelaide.

General Costs

Students must also allow for general expenses such as those indicated below: (Guide Only)

Annual Cost

General Course Costs (books & equipment) $500.00 – $700.00

Weekly Cost (other than Rent)

Items Amount
Food Contribution $50.00 – $75.00
Takeaway Lunches & Drinks $30.00 – $45.00
Bills / Utilities (Electricity, Gas etc) $20.00 – $25.00
Telephone (not Mobile) $10.00 – $15.00
Public Transport fares $30.00 – $60.00
Spending Money $40.00 – $70.00

Establishment Costs

Bond (usually 1 month’s rent) 4.333 x weekly rent
Telephone / utilities connection $150-$160
General furniture items $400-$650

Please Note:

  • The above estimates are in Australian dollars (AUD$) and these estimates are subject to change.
  • Don’t forget these costs do not include expenses relating to mobile phones, car or computer expenses.
  • Tuition Fees are not included in these living costs estimates.
  • It is recommended that students allow a minimum of AUD $18,000.00 – $20,000.00 per year to cover their living costs. It is also recommended to allow an extra AUD $2000.00 for costs that you may incur while settling in – such as food, transport, and any personal items you may require.

    Bringing Your Family


    Child care services are provided in centers throughout Melbourne. There may be long waiting lists, so it is advisable to contact some centers which are conveniently located to you. Please visit the website for further details of child care centers, kindergartens, early learning centers, nannies and babysitters.


    Schooling / Education providers

    The three main education providers are the State Government (1613 schools), Catholic Education (484 schools) and the Independent schools sector (692 schools). Government schools are often called State Schools or Public Schools. Non-government schools are often called Private Schools.
    For more information visit the Victorian Department of Education & Training Schools Online website.This site provides easy access to a wealth of information for parents about Victorian government schools, both state schools and private/independent schools. Explore the site and access information that includes school curriculum and programs, special features and virtual tours of schools that match your interest, and if you find a school that suits your preferences you can make an enquiry to the school. or request an information package from the school. http://www.education.vic.gov.au/findaservice/Home.aspx

    In addition to paying school fees you may also be required to purchase a school uniform, textbooks and other sundry items necessary for study.


    Most Private schools have a religious affiliation, but some are non-denominational. All Victorian State schools are non-denominational.


    Most Victorian Government Schools are co-educational however there are some single sex Government schools at the Secondary level. In the Private sector there are co-educational, as well as single-sex schools, at both Primary and Secondary level.

    Schooling Levels

    Children in Victoria have one year in Prep; six years in Primary school (Year 1 to Year 6) and six years in Secondary school (Year 7 to Year 12). Some schools offer a Pre-Prep year. Not many Government schools are combined Primary and Secondary schools, but some Catholic schools are and many Private schools.

    Starting and Finishing Age

    Victorian Government schools welcome enrolments for children who turn five (5) years of age by April 30 of the year in which they start school and most begin taking enrolments in May for the following year. Each Private school sets its own policy on starting age and when they take enrolments. All Victorian children must attend school between the ages of 6 and 15 years inclusive (unless an exemption is granted).

    School Terms

    For Current term dates please visit

    For a full list of Victorian Public Holidays, see: Victoria Online:

    Life in Australia book

    This book provides information about Australian history, culture, society and the values Australian people share. Book is also available in various languages other than English and can be downloaded from www.immi.gov.au/living-in-australia/values/book

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