Students expected to pay over €1,000 a month as rents surge

'A breakdown of figures released by shows the huge prices in private rentals facing many third-level students throughout the country' Stock photo: PA

Ian Begley and Paul Melia

Students are now being expected to fork out up to €1,107 per month for a single-bed house near their college as rents continue to surge.

A breakdown of figures released by shows the huge prices in private rentals facing many third-level students throughout the country.

Assuming that bedrooms are not shared, a first-year student at Letterkenny Institute of Technology, Donegal, will pay as little as €198 per month in a three-bed house and €254 for a two-bed.

However, a student in UCD will be expected to pay as much as €840 per month to live in a private three-bed house and €1,107 in a two-bed accommodation close to college.

Two-bedroom houses near universities in Cork, Galway, Limerick and Maynooth range between €455 and €533.

However, rising rents throughout the country are putting enormous pressure on families. data shows rents have increased by 18.5pc in Waterford, with Dublin hikes ranging from 10pc to almost 15pc.

The only university town where the cost of renting has fallen is in Letterkenny, where a three-bed house is 2.4pc cheaper to rent this year.

Trinity Students' Union president Shane De Rís said students would be forced out of education.

With many college-operated residencies full to capacity long before CAO offers come online, students are often left scraping the bottom of the housing barrel.

"It is tragic that yet again we'll see students forced out of education due to the financial strain placed on them by the housing market, forced to delay their future due to Government inaction," he said.

The housing crisis was the biggest obstacle facing the future of higher education.

Meanwhile, the demand for on-campus accommodation has grown significantly in recent years, with students paying up to €11,000 for two semesters.

Rates in Dublin compared with other parts of the country differ significantly.

UCD's on-site accommodation offers a number of options to students living on their campus.

A student spending two semesters (September-May) on its Belgrove campus will be expected to pay €7,383. These single-bed apartments contain two bathrooms with a shared kitchen and living space.

The university's Roebuck Castle residence has a price of €11,347 for two semesters.

The prices at Trinity College Dublin's campus vary each semester. From September 5 to December 31, a student living in the college's Goldsmith Hall will be expected to pay €3,504. And from January 1 to May 4, they will need to pay an additional €3,652. These single-bed apartments contain two bathrooms and a kitchen/living room.

But to spend two semesters in Trinity's Graduate Memorial Building, complete with a single study bedroom and private bathroom, a student will have to fork out €7,793.

Meanwhile, a single room with a private en-suite bathroom in NUI Galway's Corrib Village will set you back €5,600 for two semesters.

Teresa Kelly, executive assistant at the accommodation office in NUIG, said the demand for accommodation within the campus was extremely high.

"People have been booking as far back as January," she said.

"We're encouraging anyone living within a radius of 30km to commute for the first semester because things generally open up again in October."

In Cork, an en-suite bedroom in UCC's Victoria Lodge costs €5,439 for the full academic year, while one with a shared bathroom costs €5,254.

"The demand for our student accommodation is very high, especially since privately owned properties in Cork are so expensive," said UCC Students' Union welfare officer Niamh Connery.