As a result of being unable to find accommodation in the city, third-level students in Limerick are staying in hotels.
Students studying in Limerick are paying up to €390 on a weekly basis for five nights in hotels as part of a deal struck between Mary Immaculate College and three hotels in Limerick city.
This is the first time that the college has had to do this for students, saying that there is no other option while acknowledging that it’s not ideal.
This comes as quite a concerning sign that the accommodation crisis has spread beyond larger cities such as Dublin and Cork, with the college’s accommodation manager John Randles stating that the shortage is far more extreme this year when compared to previous years.
He stated that there are two factors contributing to the accommodation crisis – remote learning and long-term rent.
Effectively, remote learning has resulted in students not renting properties over the past year-and-a-half which has resulted in houses, that used to be available to students, being taken out of the market and rented long-term.
There has also been quite a significant decrease in the number of people offering “digs” accommodation nationwide.
This has resulted from the Covid-19 pandemic, as many people are cautious of having other people in their households.
One mother told RTÉ News that she is paying €350 a week for her daughter’s hotel accommodation while stating, “I personally cannot sustain this on an ongoing basis. She has her dream place in college and is totally stressed with no place to live.”
She added, “Hotels can charge what they like, they know we’re in trouble. It’s a five-night stay – Sunday to Thursday. You have to be out of the room on Friday morning until Sunday night, so you’re into college with your suitcase on Friday morning.”