Living Off Campus Overview

As a subset of our residential community, the Office of Residential Life values the social education and engagement of students living in our residence halls. For some students, though, the opportunity to live in the wider community provides an experience that is more conducive to their developmental or environmental needs. To include those students with such interests, a small number of students are permitted to submit an application to reside off campus.

General Terms and Rules

  • Students are not guaranteed approval to live off-campus.
  • Once approval is granted, a student may continue to live off-campus in subsequent semesters/years unless prohibited by the outcome of a student conduct process.
  • Students must reapply for off-campus housing every year.
  • The College will permit up to 50 students to live off-campus each academic year.
  • Students must reside within a 20-mile radius of campus.
  • The College/Office of Residential Life does not offer an off campus listing service nor does it offer assistance with arrangements or securing a lease. Students are responsible for making all plans and arranging their housing and off-campus logistics.

Once a student applies, is approved, and moves forward with moving into their off campus housing, the College will not provide lease forgiveness should a conflict arise where the student vacates the property. The Office of Residential Life will do its best to house the student should space be available. However, we will not be able to assist with the financial implications of a broken lease.

Automatic Approval

Students who seek the Automatic Approval must submit an application. In most cases, these requests are automatically approved. Students must wait to receive approval in writing from the Office of Student Affairs to confirm.

Automatic Approval Criteria

The following qualify a student for Automatic Approval for off-campus living (provided the 50-person cap has not been reached). These students must still submit the off-campus application noting how they meet the automatic exemption:

  • Student who lives with a parent or legal guardian within a 20-mile radius and commutes
  • Student who is 25 years or older
  • Student who is married or is in a domestic partnership
  • Student who has dependent children living with them

Regular Application

The regular application process for residing off-campus for the next academic year will remain open until April 1st 2022 or until we meet the 50-person maximum, whichever is earlier. If/when the 50-person capacity is met, the Office of Residential Life will close the application process. Note: Late requests will generally not be considered unless there exist compelling and extenuating circumstances. Late requests should be referred to the Office of Student Affairs Operations at osaops@amherst.edu.

Regular Application Criteria

  • First-year students must reside on campus on the First-Year Quad as a part of the New Student Experience. Therefore, first-years are ineligible to apply unless they meet Automatic Approval criteria.
  • Sophomores, juniors, and seniors may apply to reside off campus until the maximum allowance is reached.

Off-Campus Considerations

We ask all students to consider the following while considering residing off campus:

  • Weigh the cost of residing off campus. Think about travel and food costs and food security. Would you continue to want a meal plan?
  • Have you consulted financial aid/student accounts about how the change will affect you financially?
  • Do you have reliable transportation/ability to travel to classes during inclement weather? Is the property on a bus line?
  • Please consult with the Office of Accessibility Services if applicable.
  • Do you have an emergency contact who can assist you with securing the lease/ if an urgent matter arises?

 If you wish to live off campus in Fall 2022, please complete an application by April 1st at 11:59pm.