Students protest hikes in the cost of residences near DCU

Many say they will not be able to afford to rent there next year

Students protest hikes in the cost of residences near DCU

Image: Juliette Gash

Dozens of Dublin City University (DCU) students are protesting over hikes in the cost of residences near the university.

The Shanowen complex has raised its fees by 27% for next September, but fees have risen almost 80% since 2014.

Many of the students in say they will not be able to afford to rent there next year.

"It was a bit expensive last year, but this year it's just crazy", one student said.

"The full SUSI grant wouldn't even cover rent here", another said.

A thirs student said: "It's a lot of not sleeping, it's a lot of up late, crying over (property website) Daft, and trying to find something we can afford.

"We just don't know what we're going to do - its very, very bleak".

They are calling for the private company that runs the apartment complexes to reverse the hikes, and for new laws to protect students in the future.

Image: Juliette Gash

Podge Henry is vice president for welfare and equality at the DCU Student's Union.

"Students are paying up to 9,200, potentially 10,000, for a nine month lease for accommodation in the area.

"It's been raised - for example my sister lived in one of the Shanowen's four years ago and it was just under €5,000 - and now it's been raised to 9,200 with no change in the apartment complex whatsoever".

Last week, the Government confirmed it will review arrangements around private student accommodation after massive rent hikes near the university.

In the 2014/2015 academic year, the price for Shanowen Square was €4,900, which included internet and utilities.

Four years later the prices have increased by almost 80%, with management looking for €8,695 for the academic year starting in September.

That is for just eight and a half months, and works out at €235 a week - more than €100 a week more expensive than it was in 2014.

There is a similar increase in the company's other apartment block, Shanowen Halls, where prices are due to go up 23.5% next year.