You can rent accommodation on a short-term basis, so you'll have time to get to know Dundee and find an area you'd like to live in. This can be arranged through the University (on request), so you don't have to worry about paying for it in advance.
House prices in Dundee are lower than properties in bigger cities like Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen, and rental prices have followed a similar trend.
Lettingweb Dundee is a directory of all properties for rent, compiled from numerous different residential letting agencies.
In the UK, in addition to your rent, full-time workers pay Council tax. This tax varies in price, dependent on which 'band' the property you are renting falls under (band 'A' is the cheapest). In Scotland, water rates are included in your Council Tax (this is not the case in England and Wales). Luckily, PhD students do not have to pay council tax.