Students encouraged to consider 'digs' when searching for accommodation

Thousands of new students will be looking for a room in the coming weeks...

Students encouraged to consider 'digs' when searching for accommodation

UCC. Image: Google Maps

Students are being urged to consider staying in 'digs' as the hunt for college accommodation heats up.

Over 70,000 people will get their Leaving Cert results next week, with CAO offers to follow on August 21st.

As offers are accepted in coming weeks, areas around the country's colleges and universities will see the annual rush of thousands of new students looking for a room.

Kelly Coyle is the welfare officer at the University College Cork (UCC) student union, and she spoke to Newstalk Breakfast about the situation in Cork.

She said that while students in the city do not face the same shortages of accommodation seen in Dublin, but did say it can still be difficult for some students to find a bed.

She observed: "We still house everyone. We still haven't gotten as far as twin bedrooms, triple bedrooms - most people in Cork would still have a single room - and our rent still isn't overly high. We're not as bad as Dublin.

"It can sometimes be difficult for students to find accommodation - but, by the end of it, we've never had anyone out on the streets... we've never had anyone drop out because of it that we know of."

Kelly said many students are now renting single rooms in family homes - and the use of 'digs' is something the student union would very much encourage.

She explained: "We would promote digs a lot. We try to get maybe elderly people to rent out a room to students, and then they can help around the house and things like that. [It's] just to try and get a few rooms for students.

"There's still the same amount of rooms, but Cork's student population increases every year and there's no more houses being built. So we are seeing a bit more digs nowadays."

Kelly noted that rooms are advertised through sites such as Studentpad and the Union of Students in Ireland (USI) website, which they have some control over compared to general housing & accommodation websites.

She suggested: "At least if students are booking through them, they know those families have been approved through us".