Balancing Cost and Comfort: Finding the Right Student Accommodation for You

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Photo of a clean kitchen

Are you looking for student accommodation that meets your needs and provides comfort? You have landed on the right post. Finding a cost-effective option is vital when it comes to living abroad, especially as an international student.

Photo of a clean kitchen

Almost 400 thousand students travel abroad every year for their higher studies, and studying abroad significantly requires a lot of money. This causes budget planning, at least for the first-semester students, who might have to plan a budget-friendly lifestyle.

As many of you are students, let us briefly introduce you to how you can find your ideal student accommodation and what options you should consider.

6 Tips on How to Find the Perfect Student Accommodation

Following are the 6 basic factors before choosing the right student housing for your academic journey. Read to find out the ultimate way to live all out of your comfort in a foreign country.

1. Understanding Your Priorities

A Weary Female Student Having a Headache

● Identify Your Needs

The first and most important thing when it comes to house hunting is knowing what you need. Identify your needs, these requirements may include the proximity to your campus, all the amenities you would require so you don’t need to run around to get them on your own in a new city, and, of course, your social environment.

● Budget Considerations

Try making a budget that is close to your comfort spending. A realistic budget helps you plan your academic journey more efficiently. Once you have understood all your potential costs, such as your student accommodation rent, utility bills, cost of transportation, and more, you will have an imaginary portrait of your lifestyle in a queue.

2. Types of Student Accommodation

a. On-Campus Housing

When you choose a college accommodation provided by your university or college, it is known as On-campus accommodation. These accommodations are the type where you live on the campus itself or very close to the campus.

  • Pros: Proximity to classes, including amenities, social opportunities
  • Cons: Higher cost, limited privacy

b. Off-Campus Apartments

When you choose accommodation out on your own or through an agent in a nearby location, that is known as off-campus accommodation. You must find accommodation close to your campus to save time and travelling costs.

  • Pros: More freedom, potential cost savings, variety of options
  • Cons: Additional responsibilities (bills, maintenance), distance from campus

c. Homestays

Homestays are accommodations where you stay with an authorised local family who has signed up to take students for the duration according to their academic timeline.

  • Pros: Cultural immersion, potentially lower costs
  • Cons: Less independence, adjusting to host family’s lifestyle

d. Shared Housing

Shared housing is an excellent option for those moving to a new country with friends or who already have a few friends, as it involves sharing common spaces with your roommates or co-tenants.

  • Pros: Cost-effective, social benefits
  • Cons: Sharing space, potential conflicts

3. Researching and Comparing Options

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● Online Platforms and Resources

An online platform is crucial during the housing search process. Platforms like the amberstudent app simplify your task by finding accommodations that match your preferences. Additionally, resources like university accommodation offices help ensure that the housing options are verified and safe.

● Visiting Properties

If you live near the city, you can visit properties in person to find your ideal place to stay. This allows you to inspect important factors such as safety, cleanliness, and the condition of the facility. Additionally, you can directly speak with property owners or landlords to inquire about everything you need to know.

● Reading Reviews and Testimonials

Before choosing your ideal accommodation, it’s important to check reviews from current and former tenants. This will give you the assurance you need regarding safety and quality of life.

4. Balancing Comfort with Cost

● Evaluating Essential vs. Non-Essential Comforts

Prioritise amenities essential for daily living to enhance your comfort while keeping costs in mind. Consider what you truly need and invest in a student essential kit, not just for college essentials but also for your accommodation. Paying for amenities you won’t use in the long run is unnecessary.

● Compromising Smartly

Understanding how to make informed compromises without sacrificing too much comfort is key to balancing cost and comfort. Smart planning is crucial for achieving this balance, and mastering this art of sustainability can greatly enhance your living experience.

5. Making the Final Decision

● Weighing Pros and Cons

List down all your options and write down the pros and cons to find the most suitable accommodation for your academic journey. Getting input from your family, friends, and mentors will also help you to make your final decision.

● Trusting Your Instincts

Your biggest weapon is your instincts, so always trust them. Where you feel comfortable and secure will be your next home. If you find something off, do not hesitate to leave and avoid red flags at all costs.


Indeed, it does take some time and effort to find the ideal house that balances cost and comfort. By following the above-mentioned guide and including some of your tips, you can successfully find your home away from home.

About AmberStudent—Amber Student is one of the leading student accommodation platforms, established in 2016 and serving over 80 million students globally. Amber Student is your one-stop destination for all your housing needs, fully assisted by Amber experts. Download the Amber app from the Google Play or App Store to book an affordable home for your adventure.

Author’s Bio – Bobby Sinha is a storyteller; she enjoys watching Japanese indie movies and knows various ways of using a chopstick. A graduate in business, working as a writer, and someday aspiring to become a Filmmaker proves how versatile she is.


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