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Housing in Rochester

There are many housing options in the Rochester area, on and off campus, such as:

  • Renting a house or part of a house from a private landlord
  • Leasing a single apartment unit through a formal complex
  • Buying a home

Finding the right place to live takes research and an understanding of the area and your budget. We recommend looking at potential living arrangements for off-campus housing in person before making a decision.

Residential Life and Housing Services

On-campus and off-campus housing needs can be directed to the University’s Office for Residential Life and Housing Services. They can assist with applying for on-campus housing, setting up meal contracts, and preparing for living in a University dorm. The office also has staff available to help with off-campus housing.

Living Off Campus

Students not living on campus have plenty of options to choose from in terms of convenient, affordable housing.

The University’s Off-Campus Living Program has resources available to help you locate rental housing, understand the leasing process, and negotiate a rental contract. Other services include:

  • Off-campus living advising—Available by appointment or during posted walk-in hours. Located in 020 Susan B. Anthony Hall, River Campus. Contact the Coordinator for Off-Campus Living at or +1 (585) 275-3166.
  • Property visits—Available during peak summer periods, including free transportation and assistance in looking at local rental properties.

Advice for Renters

Know your rights as a renter. Be sure to read and understand your lease agreement before you sign it. If you break a lease it could affect your future plans to return to the United States or ruin your credit.

The New York State Attorney General’s Office publishes the Tenant’s Rights Guide (PDF) to help renters in New York. This document outlines your rights and the landlord’s responsibility to provide you with clean and safe housing, including functioning heat and hot water facilities (Real Property Law §235-b).

If you are unable to resolve issues with your landlord and feel they are not fulfilling their obligations as outlined in the Tenant’s Rights Guide, make an appointment with the International Services Office to discuss your situation, especially if you feel you are being treated unfairly or taken advantage of.

Buying a House

There are several neighborhoods surrounding the University and in the Rochester area where students and employees can buy their own home instead of leasing a rental property. This decision is often based on long-term plans, access to necessary funding, and lifestyle.

As a general rule, we advise not buying a home if you plan to be in that house for fewer than five years. This is because you’re not likely to get a good return on your investment over such a relatively short period of time.

As an international student, scholar, or employee, buying a house does NOT contradict your status as a non-immigrant. This information should not be a factor in terms of a future visa application or maintaining valid US immigration status.