The Impact of rising housing costs on student affordability in Galway    
The Impact of rising housing costs on student affordability in Galway    

The Impact of rising housing costs on student affordability in Galway    

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As per research, stable and affordable housing may enhance the opportunities provided to students for educational success. With a helpful and constant home environment, it can balance the efforts of an educator and lead to improved student achievement. Affordable housing can foster the educational success of all students by providing them with financial stability, reducing mobility, providing safety, nurturing living environments, and providing a platform for community development.

A surge in rental costs and greater demand for traditional campus life have the pandemic have made students struggle to find student accommodation Galway as per their preference and budget. At university, students have been seen struggling with the long wait lists for university housing. Universities have made efforts to accommodate the students but there were times, they have to stop enrolling students because of the accommodation issues.

Renting continues to be the biggest expense 

A student doesn’t matter how much intelligent they are, they struggle to pay the rent of an accommodation. Any average student’s largest monthly expense is rent accounting for about 45% of the monthly living expense. According to a survey held in 2021-22, there has been a 16% increase in the rent of PBSA since the last survey happened in the year 2018-19. Privately offered PBSA and private property-owners are more exclusive than the dorms at the university. However, private providers dominate the market.

How do food prices affect the students? 

There has been also a surge in the price of food and non-alcoholic beverages. It has risen by 16.4% in the 12 months. Many students are facing increasing problems eating food, especially when it comes to affording restaurant food or a drink at the bar. As per an online survey in October 2022, the students have been found to have less than 50 euros a month after they have paid their accommodation rent and utility bills. Worrying about spending money when it comes to food is negatively impacting the diets of the student. Most of the students are spending less on food shopping and essentials in response to the rising costs.

Are the students taking on more debt? 

Rental expenses remain the largest monthly expenditure for students, accounting for approximately 45% of their living costs. Private providers dominate the market, and there has been a 16% increase in the rent of purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) since the previous survey in 2018-19. This rise in housing costs puts a strain on students’ budgets, making it difficult for them to afford other necessities, such as food and non-alcoholic beverages.

The students are taking more debt and they rely more on credit cards because of the rising costs. It has been found that many students are taking new debt to cover their credit usage. Many students are relying on credit cards to support them with their everyday expenses.

What is the impact on students’ well-being? 

90% of the students say that the rise in the cost of living has negatively impacted their mental health. Students say they worry about eating, paying the bills, or even partying with friends. The concerns linked to the cost-of-living pressures are more among older students, postgraduates, and those who have errands of folks on them. The most common reasons which are behind dropping out of the university are mental health and financial burden.

What are universities doing to help the students in Galway?

Most universities provide students with a student advisory board or a welfare service to advise them on issues comprising finances and housing. The students who are concerned about their financial situation can contact their university to learn about additional funding comprising hardship funds, discretionary funds, support funds, etc. Discretely, many universities have breadths in their hardship funding and support once the cost escalates. They are providing support in different terms be it energy bills, subsidized meals, etc.

Wrapping Up 

The impact of rising housing costs on student affordability in Galway is a significant concern for both students and universities. Affordable housing plays a crucial role in providing students with a stable and supportive environment, which is essential for their educational success. However, the surge in rental costs and increased demand for student accommodation due to the pandemic have made it increasingly challenging for students to find suitable and affordable housing options in Galway.

In most localities including Galway, it has been seen that the student niche market works for the benefit of the students. however, you have seen many cases where students let prices advantage of student groups. They are generally required to offer rent guarantees from their parents. But these practices are not applicable to any other tenant group. The supply of property to meet the student demand tended to be good with much of the property supply to students coming from landlords who are specifically buying properties for providing housing facilities to the students. There are some parts of the city, where you can see an obvious tendency for the student housing market to become overflowing with the housing options. You can choose from them and find the best as per your needs and budget.

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