How to Find Housing in Dublin, Ireland
A Step by Step Guide for the Young and Restless
1. Start searching about two weeks before arriving. You got this! 2. Keep your standards high. Like, House Hunters International high! 3. Tell people details about your life so they’ll like you and want you to live with them, like, yesterday, simply because you’re so cool and American. 4. Don’t settle. Like, don’t.
Housing in Dublin can be a challenge to come by. But what isn’t in life? Don’t follow the above advice. You’ll be sad.
1. Book a hostel for the week of your arrival. Many hostels offer deals for staying 7 consecutive days. Do this with plenty of notice. I’m staying at Barnacles hostel two doors down from the infamous Temple Bar and I really like it. I’m blowing a pretty penny because I only initially booked two days, but if you do it right it’ll only set you back $100 for a week. Some hostels, like Barnacles, include breakfast, linen, a dinner a week, and offer discounts on excursions and pub crawls. And even if you think you’ll find housing ASAP, book a week. It’s worth the peace of mind. Thought of a week in a hostel got cha squeamish? It really shouldn’t if you pick a good one, but book a hotel, B&B, whatever, instead.
2. Research location. South Dublin is regarded as more classy and safe than north of the Liffey River (they have jokes for days on this, really), but there are pockets of northern locations that are perfectly fine to walk around after dark. ALWAYS look up your potential neighborhood online (it’s super easy to do so, so why not).
3. Compromise. When I first started my search, I wanted a) city center location, b) under $400 to sublease a private room, c) to only live with Irish, d) to only live with Irish girls, and e) the space to be clean, modern, but with an Irish charm and modern Western amenities. LOL. You can’t have it all. This is temporary, and no one is ever going to find THE perfect space on an entry-level budget. Once I accepted this, it was all better. As long as it’s clean and you’re safe, be happy!
4. Be creative. I ended up searching short-term corporate rentals, short-term student apartments, long-term hostel rentals, and long-term B&B rentals. Google is your friend.
The space I ended up securing is a shared room (I share with a Korean girl who’s never home) for 4 weeks ending mid-March. My landlords are a soft-spoken super sweet Portuguese couple, and they’ve given up the master suite to let, which means I have an en-suite bathroom! It’s located on the north side of town, but just on the river, and about a eight minute walk east of the Spire, a monument marks the middle of town. So, north, but not really. It’s in the finance district, so it’s got loads of transportation lines all right by it. (And for those interested, it’s €400 a month.)
In the end, I didn’t sacrifice too much in terms of my necessities: I got a safe space, amenities close by, rent is in my range, the apartment is less than ten years old and even has a nice sized balcony! And the couple, who’s moving mid-March, has already offered me a place to stay through May if I need it.
I felt really discouraged when I couldn’t find exactly what I wanted right away, so I know what it feels like to feel so pressured to find the right thing. But be wise and smart in your search, and the right thing will come. And, yes, you can find somewhere to sublet short term, but it will take lots of searching. Be patient!
For short-term student rentals…
- Viva Dublin: I walked to their office, and though they generally cater to internationals who are coming here short-term to learn English, they’ll accommodate you if they have space. They also gave me the following company names.
- Eazy Dublin
- International Student Accommodation
- Celtic Halls
For property listings…
- Daft.ie: This is supposedly what everyone uses to post open spaces. You can sublease, get whole apartments, or whole houses on here.
For initial stay bookings…
- hostelworld.com: This is my favorite for booking hostels, as you can find all kinds of honest reviews.
- couchsurfing.com: If you want to try your luck, try couchsurfing. It’s free! But you may get murdered. Just kidding. Kind of.
- homestay.com: You can rent out a space in someone’s house for a short-term period if you’d like! Kind of like airbnb.