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Types of housing in Australia

In this guide we will help you choose the type of housing in Australia that best suits your budget and needs. Everything you want to know about housing can be found at

If you are thinking of moving to Australia and want to find your ideal home, but do not know what documents you need to have, where you could live or what visa you need to move, do not hesitate to contact our migration agency, Visado Migration Services, a company that will help and guide you through the process of searching, applying and obtaining a visa.

Types of housing in Australia

Types of housing in Australia

There are different types of housing in Australia, each one of them is designed to facilitate and improve your lifestyle, their goal is to make you feel comfortable.

Everyone has their own tastes, you may prefer to share expenses with other students, live in a student residence or immerse yourself in the Australian culture by moving in with an Aussie family. All of these options are wonderful, but your decision will depend on your budget, preferences and of course the number of people.

Remember that moving to Australia as a family is not the same as arriving as a student in the territory. Below, we will mention a group of dwellings that you can then call home.


This is a very particular way Australians call hostels. If you have never visited one of these homes you should know that it is an establishment that has rooms with bunk beds or single beds that have a very low cost compared to other accommodations. Without a doubt backpackers are perfect to stay for a few days or a couple of weeks. 

There is no doubt that it is the best option for those who need a space that offers the best quality/price ratio. In Sydney, Melbourne and Gold Coast you can find hostels ranging from $200 to $450 AUD. Meanwhile, Brisbane, Perth and Byron Bay have backpackers ranging from $180 to $400 AUD. 

These prices are tentative and are calculated based on a room for 4 or 6 people. Remember, the season in which you travel will influence the availability and prices of the hostels.

Student Residence

One of the advantages of living in student residences is that you will be able to live with other people of other nationalities and meet other students who are in pursuit of the same objectives and who ultimately want to achieve the same goals. 

These types of housing in Australia will relieve you of some burdens, for example, you can share the chores, you won’t have to worry about cleaning a large space by yourself, you will have access to dining rooms and the cost of the place is really affordable. 

Shared rooms/houses

This is one of the most common types of housing in Australia, undoubtedly staying in a house or shared apartment can be a very fun experience if you want to enjoy independence, ie, come and go as you wish without having to be accountable, you can also invite your friends and family. This will allow you to live in the city of your choice, it can be close to your place of study, the beach or work.

We must emphasize that if you rent a shared house each person will have their own room, that is to say, only you will have access to your place of rest, but you will have in common some areas such as living room, kitchen, bathrooms. But when you share a room, there are two or more beds in the same space which you will share.

In most cities in Australia, it is possible to find shared rooms, you can also rent this place with your best friend or a family member and enjoy the aussie lifestyle. Basic utilities such as electricity, water and internet are expenses that you should take into account.

Depending on the area and the season in which you decide to visit the territory, you should know that the values of the types of housing in Australia can vary, for example, in Sydney, Melbourne and Gold Coast, individual housing can reach a value between $190 and $380 AUD, while shared housing ranges from $150 to $200 AUD, all prices are calculated per week.

Meanwhile, in Brisbane, Byron Bay and Perth, you can pay between $150 and $340 AUD per week for a single room, but housing and shared rooms will allow you to save some money and you can pay between $120 and $200 AUD per week.

Au Pair

For many students it is a very rewarding option to live with an Australian family, this way if you are a foreigner and you need to improve your English, you will be able to do it quickly when you are introduced to the culture. When you get a job as an Au Pair or nanny, you will be able to live with a family and at the same time receive a salary.

Unlike the types of housing in Australia mentioned above, these are usually not very central and may be located far from the school, however, it is all a matter of organization.

It is important to highlight that finding housing in Australia can be a bit complicated if you are abroad, if you are a student the situation can become easier, because you can stay in the university campus or rent something individual. However, when you are a family the job of finding a space that covers the needs of all can be a little more cumbersome. 

Emigrating, working and living in Australia

Our recommendation is that when you arrive in Australia you decide to rent a space for a year, this will allow you to get to know better the areas of the city where you live and adapt your needs and tastes to the place. The different types of housing in Australia will allow you to save quickly so that you can finally acquire your own property.

In Australia, it is very common to look in the newspaper or on the internet to locate the types of housing in Australia that are available, this will make it easier for you to search door to door or remote agents that may be scams.

Is it better to buy or rent housing in Australia?

As we have mentioned before, we recommend you to rent or lease a house or room in Australia, this is because the paperwork process is much simpler. For example, you will only have to sign the document with the terms and conditions of the contract which is called “lease”, from this amount you can stay in the house for a period of 6 months or 1 year, it all depends on what is stipulated in the contract, we recommend you to negotiate it, if you wish, before signing the contract. 

As a tenant you will have to pay one month in advance, which will remain as a security deposit. This money is deposited at the Head Office for Residential Lease Guarantees. Generally, in order to rent a house or room, landlords will request a credit reference, which allows them to verify that you have the necessary resources to pay the corresponding amount.

Usually, the rent must be paid on the first day of each month, but if you would like to cancel the contract before the established period you will have to pay a penalty, for that reason, we recommend that you lease the right time, after having inspected the entire property and having understood all the terms and conditions.

Types of student housing in Australia

Australia’s most populated urban centers and most popular cities can be a bit sparse of residences, in addition to this the costs tend to be a bit higher, due to the higher turnover in these places compared to regional areas. 

For students it can become a little challenge to find housing, so we recommend that you start with a temporary housing, which manages to adapt to your basic needs and that allows you to develop comfortably in your studies. After getting to know the area, you can broaden your horizons and choose a better residence.


This is how homestays in Australia are called, they are very popular and generally foreign students who have recently arrived in the country usually choose this option, because it is an opportunity to continue learning about the country and to get to know its customs and culture. It is based on the permanence, during an academic year, in an Australian home.

The educational institutions have a list of host families that are able to accommodate foreign students. Generally, food is included in the package and therefore the price, however, it is possible that the student decides to pay for his/her own food and take care of his/her own diet. In the Homestay, you will be able to enjoy single or shared rooms, this is what makes the rate vary.

During the stay in the farms the same services are offered, only, in a rural environment, this will allow you to get closer to nature and the simplicity that characterizes the Australian people. The warmth and love expressed by the Australians is so much, that they usually treat the students as members of their family, however, just like in your native home, in order for you to adapt properly to the lifestyle of this family, you will have to accept their rules.

The Homestay with full board includes a private room with closet, desk and bed; laundry; meals (breakfast and dinner are shared with the family, plus lunch is packed if you have to attend classes). Meanwhile, the single homestay only has a closet, desk and bed, plus access to the kitchen and laundry.

University accommodation in Australia

Most of the university institutions in Australia have comfortable student residences, where you will only be able to stay if you come on exchange. These types of buildings are located near shopping centers and public transport.

There is undoubtedly a great advantage of living in student residences for foreigners, and that is that it will be much easier for you to make friends with people of your age, and you will be able to broaden your knowledge about other cultures. 

University residential colleges

These areas are usually self-contained, some are on campus and others in the surrounding area, and they offer food and you don’t have to worry about cleaning. In addition, they have sports, educational and recreational facilities.

University residences

Unlike the residential schools, these types of housing in Australia you must pay for, although they are a little cheaper than those mentioned above. Some are on-campus and some are off-campus, but in addition to living independently you will be able to access or leave whenever you wish.


This is not a regular boarding school, but a type of accommodation which is fully equipped and furnished, mainly for graduate students or married couples. 

Shared and rented accommodation

Shared accommodation is very common in Australia, usually on the internet or in the newspapers you can see how some students ask others to be their roommates, so that they can share their expenses. In the houses, common areas are usually shared, also, when you rent through a real estate agent, he will ask you if you want it with or without furniture. 

At the time of renting any dwelling, landlords ask for an advance payment and in case the tenant causes any damage, the money will be used to repair the damage. Otherwise, at the end of the lease the money will be returned.

How to find the right accommodation?

How to find the right accommodation?

At Visado Migration Services we will recommend you the best agents who can advise you to get your ideal apartment, house or room for rent, depending on your budget, where you can share with your partners or family. 

Practical tips for finding housing in Australia 

  • Rent a temporary accommodation before signing a definitive rental contract. This will allow you to get to know the city in depth and adapt to the spaces.
  • Look for a place that is close to your school or work, this will help you save a significant amount of money on transportation. 
  • Try to rent a property that is close to essential services, i.e. warehouses, transport stops, shopping centers, among others.
  • Before signing the contract, ask the landlord all the necessary questions, for example: How does the heating system work? How many people can occupy the place? Are children allowed? What is the rental price? When should the rent be paid? Among other questions that may occur to you at the time. 
  • Read the agreement carefully before signing, if you do not understand any clause ask the owner to clarify it, as this could be detrimental in the future.
  • Don’t rush into selecting the first home you find, take the time to visit several rooms, apartments or houses.
  • Keep your budget in mind, remember that you will have to make a deposit as a guarantee for damages, which may be refundable at the end of the contract.
  • Most accommodations are equipped with electrical items and household appliances, however, full-family houses are the exception, so you will need to budget separately in case you need some basic electrical appliances. 

What are the houses in Australia like?

The houses are types of housing in Australia that are made of wood, do not have bells and under the front door have a thin line of separation, do you know why? Here we will explain each of these curious facts about Australian houses. 

They are made of wood and are elevated: in Australia no house is designed with bricks, wood is what is used in the Aussie territory, also in the lower part most of them are elevated from the ground and it is believed that this is done to prevent the rains from flooding the house and let the water pass through or to prevent crawling animals from entering the home.

Apartments: although in some parts of the world housing blocks are known as apartments, in Australia they are called apartments.

Gaps under the door: in the front door of all Australian houses there is a small gap, which separates the end of the door from the floor, occasionally 2 to 5 cm. This is so that when mail arrives it can be introduced through the bottom of the door. Generally, use is made of this slit for the landlord or the community to send urgent notes.

There are no armored doors: due to the high levels of security in this territory, all types of housing in Australia have wooden doors and common locks, without metal plates or anti-bumping locks.

There are no doorbells: unlike other houses around the world, doorbells are not necessary in Australia, because everyone uses their hands to knock on the door. Just knocking a couple of times is more than enough to get your neighbor to come out and answer the door.

The plugs have switches: that’s right, all plugs in Australia have a button that is responsible for turning on and off the power they receive, in addition to providing security and prevent accidents this also helps save energy. Perhaps, if this type of plugs were implemented in other countries, they would spend less money on electricity bills.

The lights are dimmable: it is very common in Australia to find a small wheel that allows you to choose the level of intensity of the light. 

There are no blinds: this great invention is not used in Australia, it is unknown why, in any type of housing in Australia, not even the most luxurious ones have blinds. Their solution is to place opaque curtains that help prevent light from entering the bedrooms in the morning. 

They love carpets: Australians love carpets, and most of their rooms have one of these large pieces of fabric.

Food grinder in the sink: as can be seen in some American movies, in Australia they have a food grinder in the sink, which allows to cut into tiny pieces the food leftovers that have been left in this space. It is undoubtedly a very useful device.

Backpack vacuum cleaner: it may seem strange, but if you have a carpet this is the price you have to pay. To keep their carpets neat, Australians make use of their vacuum cleaners, which are shaped like a backpack, so in addition to cleaning the house they can exercise.

A modern mop: it may seem a bit strange and like all foreigners you will find it very strange to see this bucket in any Australian home. It is a bucket where you load the water from the mop or skunk, so to remove the water it absorbs you must hold the bucket with one foot and with one hand operate a lever that will help you to remove all the water.

Anyway, now that we have explained all the types of housing in Australia, you just have to choose the one that best suits your needs and budget. Remember to keep in mind that the place you will choose to live must be in optimal conditions, comfortable and accessible. 

Our migration agency Visado Migration Services knows how complicated the migration process is, for that reason, we cannot be on hand to guide you and help you during your first steps. When you contact us we will tell you what documents you need to collect and everything you need to facilitate your integration process to the country. In addition, we will indicate you the steps to follow so that the receiving country can offer you the invitation to apply for the correct visa. 

Some visas allow you to move to Australia with your whole family, so you must take this into account when choosing between the various types of housing in Australia, remember that it is not the same traveling alone than accompanied. Do not be afraid, Visado Migration Services will always be willing to accompany and guide you during this process. 

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