Frequently asked questions


I am renting for the first time. What do I need to know?

For lots of young people looking for more independence "moving out" and away from parents can seem like a good idea, and some times, needing to travel for university/study options will leave you with no other choice, but if you are a first time renter there are a few things you should know so that your experience doesn't turn into a nightmare!

Before you think of moving out do a budget on your income and expenses (contact the Off-Campus Accommodation Officer on 088946 6288 or for a pre-written, easy to fill-in, budget sheet!!!). Apart from the rent, there will be other household expenses, such as electricity, internet, food, phone, clothes, fuel, entertainment etc.

Once you have organised your budget and are sure of your weekly budget, check in with individual real estate agents,, the newspaper (Wednesdays and Saturday editions), CDU StudyStays, Gumtree, and various Facebook rental/lease breaks pages to look at your options for accommodation.

To combat the high costs associated with moving out/renting you may choose to share a house/room with other people. You may want to lease an entire house or unit and advertise for other tenants to fill the other rooms, or you may choose to rent a room/bed in an already established house or unit. Before you move into a new place or have other people move into your place have a think about the type of people you would like to live with. For example: Do you want them to be very clean? Would you like to like with other students? Would you prefer someone who is a local? etc. You will also need to decide how the household costs will be shared, who is responsible for paying the bills, and what the consequences are for not keeping up with the rental payments. Most importantly, make sure your housemates have a regular income so that you wont be put in a situation where you have to make up the difference in rent if they can't pay their half one month!

At the beginning of a tenancy you are usually required to pay a security deposit (bond) equivalent to 4 weeks of rent, and you will also be required to pay a fortnight's rent in advance. This bond money is held by the landlord as security against damage caused by the tenant, unpaid rent etc.

All of the information above is only the tip of the iceberg! It's a lot to take on, but it can be a very rewarding experience if done the right way. Contact the Off-Campus Accommodation Officer on (08)8946 6288 or if you have any other questions!

Does the off-campus accommodation service check the property, the landlord and any people living in the property?

No - Accommodation Services do not check any properties listed on CDU StudyStays.

CDU Off-Campus Accommodation Officers can provide students with the resources to find and inspect properties independently. We can check your lease, application forms, and provide advice if you experience any tenancy problems. Unfortunately, we can’t find, inspect or submit applications for properties on your behalf, as it is important that you inspect the properties to find the one that is right for you.

It is vital that you inspect, IN PERSON, any property you are considering renting before you move in or sign any agreements. It is up to you to ensure that the property is suitable and is a place where you would be happy to live. CDU StudyStays is offered as a resource to assist students finding accommodation only. Any lease or other housing arrangement entered into are at the discretion of the student and the accommodation provider. Students should advise the CDU Off-Campu Accommodation Officer if they have encountered any issues with accommodation they have found on our database.

Students are welcome to make an appointment (either in-person or over the phone) with the Off-Campus Accommodation Officer to discuss accommodation options.To do so please contact them on (08)8946 6288 or .

Why are database listings still displayed when the accommodation provider tells me the vacancy has been rented?

Providers sometimes forget to let us know their vacancy has been filled. The property may also have just been rented so providers have not had a chance to tell us or take down the advertisement. If you do come across a property that has been filled, but is still on our site as vacant please let us know!

If I have problems with the landlord, Real Estate Agent or other members of the household, what should I do?

You should always do as much research as you can about your rights and responsibilities before you sign a lease agreement or related documents.
You are welcome to contact the CDU Off-Campus Accommodation Officer for advice –

Information is also available at , or contact Consumer Affairs NT - on the details below:

Old Admiralty Towers, 68 The Esplanade, GPO Box 1722, Darwin NT 0801
Ph: 08 8999 1999 - Fax: 08 8935 7727

Email: Web site:

or in Alice Springs:
Level 1, Belvedere House, Parsons Street, PO Box 1745 Alice Springs NT 0871
Telephone: 08 8951 8606 Fax: 08 8951 5442

I am unsure about my rights and responsibilities as a tenant. Where can I get advice?

Queries such as: visitors staying, internet/phone connections, pets and food arrangements will need to be discussed with the landlord and/or other tenants before signing any agreement.

Legal rights and responsibilities for both the tenant and landlord can be found at

For more information contact the off-campus accommodation officer on 08 8946 6288 or