New Brunswick

Student housing options abound in Fredericton

University students will soon be returning to their respective campuses in Fredericton for another school year and any last-minute apartment hunters may not have trouble finding a place to live.

University students have more choice for living on- or off-campus

University students in Fredericton are not having problems finding housing options this year as enrolment figures continue to decline. (CBC)

University students will soon be returning to their respective campuses in Fredericton for another school year and any last-minute apartment hunters may not have trouble finding a place to live.

Declining enrolment levels at Fredericton universities means students now have more choice on where they are going to live, whether they are looking to stay on- or off-campus.

Clayton Beaton, the residence manager at St. Thomas University, said there are more spots available to students in the university's residences than in previous years.

"We are getting a few less in the terms of first-year students coming into residences, which is as you know because of enrolment numbers," he said.

The liberal arts university is seeing a slight decline in first-year students, who tend to use on-campus residences more.

By contrast, the university is continuing to retain its returning students at a higher rate. And some of those returning students are signing up for additional years of living on-campus.

Elizabeth Baker is returning to St. Thomas University for her fourth year. Baker has lived on campus for her entire university career.

"It’s nice when I want someone to do something with, like, you live with 100 other people," she said.

"So it’s really great to, you know, go see a basketball game."

Students attending the University of New Brunswick will also have their choice of places to live.

"We’ve been around this level that is some percentage, you know, 90 per cent occupancy across the residence system, at least that will be the case this year," said James Brown, the executive director for residential life at UNB.

While there are still spaces available on campus, students can also find rooms away from the university.

The UNB Student Union also has a list of nearly 50 open spots for students off campus.

Kristen Burgoyne, a third-year university student, said she enjoyed living on campus in her first year. But she has preferred the cheaper rent and flexibility of living away from school.

"[Residence], it's a lot of fun, I would highly recommend it for your first year, because that's how you meet people and that's how you make friends. But it's really distracting," she said.

"My grades suffered the first year, then I noticed last year when I moved off-campus I did a lot better."