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International students are generally satisfied with their housing situation in Turku

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News | 17.4.2019

Once in every few years, TYY conducts a housing survey for international students. This year the survey was open 7-24 March and received 105 answers. TYY thanks all the participants. The winner of the raffle of lunch for 2 in Kuori restaurant has been contacted. The survey results have been presented to the management of the University of Turku, the University’s International Affairs and Admission services as well as TYS and Retrodorm.

Out of respondents, 48 were exchange students, 52 Degree students, and 5 doctoral students.

73 % of exchange student respondents were from EU/EEA countries and only 29 % of Degree student respondents were from EU/EEA countries.

Around 65 % of respondents had been living on their own before moving to Turku. There was no big difference between exchange students and degree students. The situation has not changed since our last survey in 2016.

Only 6 % of respondents arrived in Turku without having an apartment. Even in these cases, the reason was that the student could move to the apartment the next month, the student had not accepted the offered apartment, the student was already in Finland but did not receive enough TYS “km points” or there was not enough space in the student housing.

56 % of exchange students live in TYS, 31 % in Retrodorm and 13 % in other types of housing such as private market. 83 % of Degree students live in TYS and 17 % in other types of housing.  Around half of the exchange students live alone and the other half in a shared apartment. Among the degree students, 42 % live alone, 37 % in a shared apartment and 21 % with spouse or family.

The most common way to hear about housing was directly from the University. Also tori.fi webpage and Facebook pages were mentioned. 51 % of respondents used € 201-300 in living costs (rent, water, electricity, internet) per month. 30 % pay € 301-400, 8 % pay € 401-500 and 11 % more than € 500.

Respondents were asked to evaluate different features of their housing:

  • 81 % of respondents in TYS were very satisfied or satisfied with the quality of the apartment. 60 % of Retrodorm’s respondents were very satisfied or satisfied. Only 9 % of TYS tenants were very dissatisfied or dissatisfied and 13 % of Retrodorm’s tenants were dissatisfied.
  • 74 % of respondents in TYS were very satisfied or satisfied with the location of the apartment. 53 % of Retrodorm’s respondents were very satisfied or satisfied. 14% of TYS tenants were very dissatisfied or dissatisfied and 13 % of Retrodorm’s tenants were dissatisfied.
  • 53 % of respondents in TYS were very satisfied or satisfied with the cost of living. 73 % of Retrodorm’s respondents were very satisfied or satisfied. 21 % of TYS tenants were very dissatisfied or dissatisfied and none of Retrodorm’s tenants were dissatisfied.
  • 85 % of respondents in TYS were very satisfied or satisfied with the process of making the contract.100 % of Retrodorm’s respondents were very satisfied or satisfied. Only 3 % of TYS tenants were very dissatisfied or satisfied.

The students wished for more furnished apartments, also for the Degree students. The students were also asking for more shared apartments. Students also wished they would know where in housing queue they are. Students wished that there would be a safe way to find apartment also in the free market without fear of scam.

Students are worried about where to find apartments when Retrodorm closes and these worries have been forwarded to higher education institutions of Turku and to the city of Turku. The individual comments and direct complaints have been passed on to TYS and Retrodorm anonymously.

Thank you all for participating!