STUDENT HOUSING: Happy with the accommodation at Orion College are Southern Cross University students, from left, Jeremy Berghan, Daniel Wade, Tom Lynch, Christy Hazelwood, Jarred Couley, and Holly Whiteman.
STUDENT HOUSING: Happy with the accommodation at Orion College are Southern Cross University students, from left, Jeremy Berghan, Daniel Wade, Tom Lynch, Christy Hazelwood, Jarred Couley, and Holly Whiteman. Cathy Adams

Returning students lap up new accommodation

IT'S a busy time for real estate agents and university accommodation organisers, with thousands of students preparing to study at Southern Cross University this year.

SCU has recently finished upgrades to their three SCU Village accommodation sites as part of a three-year enhancement program and SCU Village operations manager Lismore campus, Amoreena Rowe, said the new facilities had been extremely well received by residents.

"The residents at Sirius love the air-conditioned common area and study room, while Orion residents enjoy getting together on the recreation deck and cooking up a feed in the outdoor kitchen," she said.

"Magellan's residents are of course loving the new barbecue and movie area, and there are always people out and about enjoying these new spaces. These facilities have really brought residential life at SCU Village to a new standard, and encouraged residents to get out of their rooms and meet new people."

It's not only on-campus accommodation that will be used by students, said SCU UniLife senior manager Erin Miller. Domestic and international students would be seeking rooms in private homes, units, flats and rental houses, and finding a place to live was one of the biggest decisions.

Property manager from Wal Murray Real Estate Lismore Andrew Fifield said January was generally the busiest time of year because of new people coming to the area for work or study.

"While they've been getting a lot of inquiries and filling many leases, we've got the properties to handle that at the moment," he said.

The Real Estate Institute of NSW recently revealed that while there've been increases in vacancy rates in Sydney, Newcastle and the Hunter region, vacancy rates have decreased from 3.2% in January 2012 to 2.3% by December in the Northern Rivers.

SCU students Jeremy Berghan, Daniel Wade, Christy Hazelwood, Jarred Couley, Holly Whiteman and Tom Lynch, are pleased with the on-campus options and the new upgrades.



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