Rental advice

Make sure you understand your rights and responsibilities before you rent a house or apartment, or board in a rooming house or shared accommodation.

Understanding lease agreements, rental bonds, property inspections, and obligations regarding repairs and maintenance to the property is essential to protecting your rights and obtaining stable accommodation during your studies.

The Student Housing Guide can provide you with practical information and checklists to help you know and understand your legal rights and responsibilities under the Residential Tenancy Act.

Rental costs

It is important to consider the combined cost of rent, living expenses and transport when choosing rental accommodation in Melbourne.

We offer financial advice to help develop skills to manage your money.

Location profiles and rental information

You can view suburb profiles (people, lifestyle, housing type) on

Housing tip – rental accommodation generally becomes more expensive the closer it is located to the Melbourne CBD.

Bond loans & other financial assistance

Rent Assistance – Students receiving a Commonwealth Support benefit or pension and living away from home and paying rent may be eligible for Rent Assistance - contact Centrelink for more information.

Utility Relief Scheme – for Australian resident students experiencing difficulty in paying a large utility cost you can apply for a one-off utility relief payment. Contact Department of Human Services to apply.

Bond Loan Scheme - Australian resident students on low income may be eligible for a Bond Loan for a rental property or as a resident in a rooming house. Contact Department of Human Services to apply.

Students living in University operated accommodation are not eligible for a Bond Loan but may be eligible for a VU Student Loan

Housing Establishment Funds (HEF) - is a Victorian Government initiative that aims to address and prevent homelessness by providing financial assistance to individuals and families (Australian Residents) who are homeless or in a housing crisis. Funds may be provided for rent in advance (private rental) or rent in arrears (private rental) or emergency housing. An eligibility criteria applies. For further information about HEF phone 1800 825 955.

Good Insurance - Provides students on low incomes affordable household contents, car or home insurance. The Good Shepherd has negotiated affordable premiums with low excess and flexible payment options specifically for people on low incomes. Customers can also choose to pay premiums annually, monthly or fortnightly instalments and use Centrepay (Centrelink’s payment program) to manage payments.

Tenancy advice

Consumer Affairs Victoria

Consumer Affairs Victoria is the governing body responsible for the Residential Tenancies Act. Consumer Affairs can provide tenants with information and advice – the following booklets provide a summary of rights and obligations:

Download the RentRight smartphone app for important information and tools to help you manage your tenancy.

Tenants Union of Victoria

Tenants Union of Victoria provides information to inform and educate you as a tenant about your rights and how to improve your conditions. They produce publications in multiple languages and provide free and confidential telephone, drop-in and email advice

You can also contact the Tenants Union of Victoria and Consumer Affairs Victoria for further information and assistance before you sign a lease or if things go wrong during the lease.

The Equal Opportunity Act makes it illegal for Landlords to discriminate against you. If you feel that you have been discriminated against, contact Student Housing Service or the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission.

The Dispute Settlement Centre of Victoria (DSCV) provides a free mediation service to help resolve disputes. Phone +61 3 9603 8310.

Contact us

Ask a question in ASKVU

Phone: +61 3 9919 6100