Frequently Asked Questions


What is Residential Life and Housing Services?

The Office for Residential Life and Housing Services provides housing and a sense of community for approximately more than 4,100 residents. Communities are areas within the residence halls where first-year, upperclassmen, special interest floors, fraternity, sorority, and our Residence Hall Association interact. Each residence hall is comprised of co-educational living arrangements.

The Office for Residential Life, located in 020 Gates Wing of Susan B. Anthony Hall, provides direction and assistance to all administrative capacities pertaining to student housing including assignments, billing, room changes, and occupancy. If you have questions concerning the area in which you live, please speak with your area office. If you need more information or clarity, you may feel free to seek further assistance from the Office for Residential Life staff.

What is the chain of command the Office for Residence Life?

General concerns should be addressed to your resident advisors (RA), who reports to their graduate head residents (GHR). Afterwards, please speak with your area coordinator (AC), or associate director (AD), and then the 020 Gates Wing, the main office for Residential Life, if necessary.

Please seek out answers through the campus resources provided (i.e., the website, area handbooks, campus policies, and housing contract).

Does the Office for Residential Life have a lost and found?

It is very important to mark your personal items with your name and/or student ID especially during move in. Many students misplace phones, books, and even valuable items in lounges, hallways, and public spaces within our residence halls.

Whenever an item is found in a residence hall during a weekday, our facilities workers or other staff will bring the item to the area office that is open between 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., Mondays through Fridays. The area office will then contact Public Safety within one to two business days, notifying them of the lost property.

Items found in the evening and/or on weekends are reported directly to Public Safety.

Lost and found property is stored with the Department of Public Safety. If you have lost an item or wish to report finding an item, please contact their office at (585) 275-2552 or call Public Safety dispatch at (585) 275-3333.

Move In/Out

When can I officially move into my residence hall?

The official date to move into the residence hall is posted on our home page each academic year on the website and emailed to you prior to check-in. You should have plenty of time to contact your roommate(s) and arrange for travel.

Will my parents/guardians/friends be able to spend the night on move-in day (check-in)?

No, all visitors will be asked to leave your residence hall; however, there are several hotels in the area that may accommodate these persons.

When do the residence halls officially close?

In both December and May students are expected to vacate their rooms within 48 hours of their last final. Some exceptions can be made and break and summer housing is available for those who need it. In May rooms and hallways are cleaned, repaired, and used for summer housing, conference events, and sports camps.

Which buildings stay open during Winter Breaks?

Campus housing during “Winter Stay” (winter break) will be available to all students in campus housing for the fall semester who also have a housing contract for the spring semester. Students will stay in their existing housing assignment and will not be required to relocate to a designated Winter Stay hall. Students choosing to remain on campus for part or all of Winter Stay must register and will be charged a fee to support the operation and maintenance of the residence halls. This fee will be applied to student accounts.

The break closing and housing page is updated before and during the break and is the best resource for winter break information. Email with any questions regarding Winter Stay.

Rooms and Roommates

What is the cost of each room type in the residence halls?

Room rates vary based on the room and year. First-year housing is typically priced at the same rate, with Genesee Hall as the exception. Double and single rooms are the same cost however there is a discount for overcapacity triple rooms.

For an updated list of room rates see the tuition and fees link on the Bursar Office's billing and fees page.

How big are the rooms in my residence hall?

Room types vary from hall to hall due to architectural design and the needs of the University when the halls were built. Please refer to the First-Year Hill and First-Year Quad pages for averages of the room sizes in those areas.

How big are the beds in the rooms?

Most beds within the University of Rochester residence halls are standard twin extra-long twin size, 36" x 80". We also have a limited supply of 36" x 90" beds and mattresses for students over 6'4". Please let us know if you require our longest mattress and bed frame.

How do I request a room change?

Know that adjusting to living with one or even two roommate is one of the many transitions you will going through. We require all first-year students to complete a Shared Living Agreement with their roommate(s) during orientation however, it is not uncommon for students to need to be revisited after a few weeks or months. Not all roommates are going to be best friends, but many people can live well together after they have set the right boundaries and learn to respect each other’s space and living. The Resident Advisors (RAs), graduate head residents (GHRs), and area coordinators are there to help.

At the first sign of trouble, students should reach out to their RA for to get advice, revisit the Shared Living Agreement, or have a roommate mediation. If open to it, roommate mediations work. Keep in mind that sometimes this work needs to be ongoing as a compromised reached may not be realistic or working for one or more parties but keeping the RA informed and letting them help is half the battle.

If things still aren’t working, we can discuss the opportunity for a room change. Note that with first-year housing usually having several overcapacity spaces, there may not be rooms available to move into. This should never be the first step but is always an option.

Use the first-year room change request form to request a room change. The room change request form provides an opportunity to indicate preferences and special requests. The directions and process for each semester is spelled out on the room change request form. Read it carefully and be sure you understand the steps and return the form via email (as a PDF) to the address on the form. We will do our best to offer you a change that meets your request.

Students have 48 hours to decide to accept or decline the new assignment. Failure to decide within the specified time limit will result in the offer being withdrawn. If a student declines multiple offers, they may be removed from the room change offer list.

How do I request to room with my friend?

When you fill out your housing application, please include the name of the person with whom you would like to be your roommate. Your roommate must also submit a housing application with your name to be considered.

Is it possible to speak with your roommate before arriving for the first year?

Yes, once your roommate match is made, the Office for Residential Life and Housing Services will mail you both with contact information typically in early or mid-July. Please discuss your plans prior to moving in to avoid bringing two of everything.

What do I do if I am a re-activated or re-admitted student?

If you are a re-activated or re-admitted student and are interested in living on-campus, once your status change has been confirmed with College Center for Advising Services (CCAS), please email Your email message should include when your status was changed and that you’re requesting the housing information to be sent to you.

Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee housing for all re-admitted, re-activated, or transfer students but we do our best. Assignments are made on a rolling basis for both fall and spring semesters. We recommend getting your application submitted as soon as possible. More information will be provided once your application is received.

Facilities and Services

Are cooking facilities available in the residence halls?

Yes, most halls do have limited cooking facilities, but not all. Please refer to the First-Year Hill and First-Year Quad pages for specifics. Note that first-year students have extensive meal plans. See the dining website for information on where and how to use your meal plan.

Where can I do my laundry?

Each residence hall is equipped with laundry facilities. During the academic year, (fall and spring semesters), costs are included in student housing fees.

Can I bring a small microwave or small refrigerator?

Yes. Please refer to our guidelines when purchasing microwaves and refrigerators. The size limit on any refrigerator is 4.3 cubic feet. Microwaves may not exceed 900 watts. Any refrigerator over that size will not be permitted into the residence hall. A micro-fridge which is an approved appliance with a combination a microwave and refrigerator can be rented for the academic year.

Do the residence halls have internet connection?

Yes. The University of Rochester has a robust Ethernet and wireless systems.

What amenities are available in my residence halls?

Each residence hall is equipped with amenities like high-speed Internet access, cable, vending machines, laundry facilities, and lounge areas. Check the First-Year Hill and First-Year Quad pages for specific amenities.

Visitation and Safety

What are the visitation policies/procedures/guidelines?

Visitation for the residence halls is established by the Office for Residential Life and Housing Services and are intended for academic and healthy socializing. Visitation is not designed for overnight cohabitation or extended stays. Please check with each area for more specifics.

What safety precautions are taken in the halls?

All our residence halls have sprinkler systems and updated fire prevention/warning systems. Furthermore, residence halls are equipped with the necessary safety and security hardware such as smoke detectors and alarm systems, all building access to student rooms are kept locked and each student is issued a University Identification Card (ID) which activates the doors in their respective halls. Room door keys are issued to each resident. All residents must present a valid University of Rochester ID Card upon when asked by a University official including student staff.