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Accommodation for couples and families

20 September 2023

UC accommodation for couples or families in Christchurch is in high demand. We recommend you start exploring your accommodation options early. Find out about couples and families accommodation at UC and the wider Christchurch area.



Accommodation on-campus in studios and 1-bedroom units are available, however, options are in high demand and include:

  • Hayashi - 10 self-contained studio units for students in their second year of study and beyond.
  • Kirkwood Flats - 2 self-contained studio units, 2 1-bedroom units and 6 larger 1-bedroom flats.
  • Sonoda Christchurch Campus - 4 self-contained 1-bedroom units for students in their second year of study and beyond.
  • University Hall - 3 self-contained 1-bedroom units.

With the exception of Kirkwood Flats, all rates include power.  As our self-contained units are in such high demand, contracts that start at the beginning of the year are not normally extended. You can apply to return, however, your application will be waitlisted until 1 December to enable new international students an opportunity to settle into a new culture and become familiar with tenancy laws in New Zealand before moving into the private rental market.

Applications received outside normal semester dates are considered on a case by case basis.

Couples and family accommodationResidential fee (2024)Plus deposit

Hayashi (Couples Only)
Studio Unit 

$18,928 (52 weeks)


Kirkwood Flats (Couples and Families)
Studio Unit 
1 Bedroom Unit
1 Bedroom Flat
(can accommodate a young child)

$16,172 (52 weeks)
$16,796 (52 weeks)
$15,964 + power charged monthly
(52 weeks)


Sonoda Christchurch Campus (Couples Only)
1 Bedroom Unit

$21,424 (52 weeks)


University Hall (Couples Only)
1 Bedroom Unit

$20,644 (52 weeks)


To apply, please complete an online application form.  Applicants must select the term "Couples/Family Accommodation" and apply for a room type. It is likely you will also need to investigate renting privately.


Limited fully-furnished and self-contained 1-bedroom units may be available for small families at Kirkwood Flats.  To apply, please complete an online application form selecting the term "Couples/Family Accommodation" and apply for a "Self-contained flat - 1 bedroom (power additional)" as your preference. Priority will be given to international students who are new to New Zealand.  As these options are in high demand, it is likely you will also need to investigate renting privately.

Please ensure you book child care early, if required, as places are limited.

Renting privately

Most couples and families will be required to source an apartment or house off-campus on arrival in Christchurch. Market rent in Christchurch can be found on the Tenancy Services website and will give you an idea of what you can expect to pay.  Please note that these rates do not differentiate between furnished or unfurnished or the condition of the room or property.

If moving into an empty property, you will need to factor in set up costs into your budget:

  • up to 4 weeks' rent as bond
  • 1-2 weeks' rent in advance
  • power and internet
  • furniture and/or white ware (if unfurnished)
  • contents and liability insurance

You also need to budget for ongoing monthly expenses such as power, internet, transport, food and personal items.  Refer to or for cost of living information.  

You should not sign a contract or agreement without viewing a property personally, therefore, we recommend that you arrange temporary accommodation for when you first arrive in Christchurch to enable you time to find a property that you will be happy in.  For families, we recommend arriving on your own first as temporary accommodation can be booked on campus at Sonoda Christchurch Campus whilst you find a suitable house to enable your family to join you. Temporary accommodation for a single person at Sonoda is NZ$406 (2023 rate) per week.  Temporary accommodation for a family can be very expensive.

Rental homes must meet insulation standards - your landlord should provide you with an Insulation Statement to enable you to make an informed decision about the property you are about to rent.  You can also view healthy home standards on the Tenancy Services website.  If you are new to renting in New Zealand, refer to the online Renting and You booklet published by Tenancy Services.  

Find out more about renting privately.

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