Moving to Melbourne
- Be informed. Before you arrive, learn about the different housing options and how to arrange them. After you arrive, you can get straight into house hunting rather than trying to figure out where to go and what to do.
- If possible, arrive in Melbourne several weeks before Orientation. This will give you enough time to find suitable accommodation and settle in before the semester starts.
- Make sure you have arranged temporary accommodation.
Be prepared financially for the time you may need to spend in temporary accommodation.
- Make housing your first priority. Housing problems can have a major impact on your studies.
- Avoid rushing your house hunting. Rushing through this can lead to bad decisions.
Student apartments are properties specifically designed for University students. These properties are fully furnished and often provide community building activities that allow you to get to know other students and connect with the University. Hostels often cater for more independent residents and shorter stays.
Homestay options provide a furnished room and vary in cost depending on your arrangement. Meals are provided in full-board homestays.
Many students choose to rent an apartment or property through the private rental market. You can rent alone or organise to share the property with other tenants.
Share houses often offer a cheaper alternative to other accommodations options as well as giving more independence. However private renting also means more responsibility so be sure to research your options and prepare in advance.
There are eleven Residential Colleges at the University of Melbourne. They provide an enriching and supportive environment for approximately 2500 undergraduate and graduate students.
The colleges offer first-class academic support, cultural activities and sporting programs. Each college has a vibrant and diverse social atmosphere.
UnitingCare lifeAssist Homeshare is free, Government funded program that matches people who need companionship and some practical assistance (e.g. cooking, housework) to live at home with people who need accommodation. You provide your own food and a share of utility bills. More information
Setting up house
Once you've chosen a suitable place, you may need to:
- arrange utility connections (electricity, water, gas) and internet. The State Government of Victoria has a very useful service called Your Choice for comparing utilities providers. The Tenants Union of Victoria (TUV) produces a range of useful online fact sheets, including one on Utility charges.
- buy furniture and electrical appliances (there are many places that sell discount or second-hand furniture and appliances)
- buy essential items (cups and plates, storage containers, cleaning products). Op shops and variety stores (found on most shopping strips and plazas) are good places to get these items cheaply
- Know your rights and responsibilities as a tenant
- Consider contents insurance – if you have expensive items such as a musical instrument or computer equipment, contents insurance may be a good choice
If it is your first time living on your own, it will take you some time to adjust to your independence and develop life skills such as:
- learning to cook and having a well-balanced diet
- managing your money and time
- living with housemates
- taking care of your health (physical and mental)