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Many Ara students live in shared rental accommodation while studying. Sharing a flat with other students is one of the cheapest ways to live.

While there are many flats to rent, a good one may be hard to find, especially at the beginning of the academic year. It is easier to obtain a flat if you are already in the area. Finding a flat may involve first arranging temporary accommodation with relatives or friends, homestay for international students or initially staying somewhere such as a motel or backpackers.

What to expect

Most flats are unfurnished. They will contain an oven and in some cases a refrigerator and washing machine. Furnished flats are available but rental costs are higher.

International students sharing a flat with New Zealanders will develop English skills as well as being independent (international students under 18 must live in homestay accommodation).

Finding a flat

If you're going to flat, make sure you give yourself plenty of time to find the perfect spot. In Christchurch, areas close to Ara are: Addington, Beckenham, Central City, Linwood, Opawa, Phillipstown, Riccarton (near Hagley Park), Somerfield, Sydenham and Waltham.

Talk to friends and check out one of these websites to find a flat:

Cost of flatting

The following are examples of the average flatting costs per week (based upon a three person share flat):

  • Rent $85 - $200
  • Electricity $20
  • Phone $5
  • Food $50
  • Appliance Hire $4

Getting advice

Accommodation Office staff can provide advice on accommodation and tenancy issues regarding rented houses or flats.

If you require further advice on any tenancy issues, contact Tenancy Services on 0800 836 262 or visit their website. Alternatively you could contact the Tenants Protection Association on 03 379 2297.