Tuesday 25 September 2018

'I couldn't believe it... most places were around €700, which isn't feasible'

UCD student CJ Clarke, from Rathnew, Co Wicklow, has found it tough getting accommodation in Dublin. Photo: Steve Humphreys
UCD student CJ Clarke, from Rathnew, Co Wicklow, has found it tough getting accommodation in Dublin. Photo: Steve Humphreys

Ian Begley

Third-year UCD student CJ Clarke says that rents in the capital are fast becoming out of reach for most people.

The 20-year-old maths student, from Rathnew, Co Wicklow, decided to move closer to campus as her commute was cutting in to time she needed for her studies. But little did she know that most rental properties in Dublin would see her pay more than €700 a month for shared accommodation.

"I was spending up to four hours a day travelling to and from Wicklow on the very unreliable 133 bus," she said.

"I'm now entering my third year and really needed the time I spend commuting to focus on my studies.

"I just couldn't believe it when I first started my search. Most places were charging about €700 per month, which just isn't feasible for any student.

"And even at those prices they expect you to share a room with another person.

"There is also a dedicated Facebook page for UCD students looking for a place to live, but whenever a post goes up it's swarmed with dozens of other desperate people."

Fortunately, Ms Clarke was accepted to work on a voluntary basis in UCD as a residential assistance officer. Doing this will cut her rent in half.

"Living on campus is about €180 a week normally, but now that I got accepted for this role it'll be down about 50pc.

"It's a massive difference and without this incentive I just don't know how I would manage.

"I feel like I'm definitely one of the lucky ones."

Irish Independent

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