International Students have a number of on-and off-campus housing options available. You'll need to consider your finances, course load, program requirements, and more as you decide where you'll live as you attend DU.
On-campus housing is offered Housing & Residential Education. The University has a two-year on-campus requirement for first-year and second-year undergraduate students. Housing options for graduate students vary and are subject to availability.
Before you move into on-campus housing, you will be required to sign a lease that obligates you to pay for housing for one academic year. Consider your housing options carefully before signing any lease.
Residence halls are dormitories in which one or more students live in a room, eat together in the cafeteria, and share a bathroom. You may make a special request for an American roommate. The residence halls are mainly intended for students between the ages of 18 and 21 who are interested in experiencing community in an activity-focused environment. Because of the fire hazard, cooking is generally not allowed in residence hall rooms, although you may have a small refrigerator or microwave.
Most residence halls are closed during the summer and the six-week vacation period between fall and winter quarters from the end of November to the beginning of January. If you intend to enroll during the summer, notify the Housing office and they will try to place you in a facility where you can remain for a full year. You will need to arrange your own housing during periods when the residence halls are closed.
Students can also apply to join one of the DU's Living & Learning Communities (LLCs) which groups students with a common interest on one floor of a residence hall and provides specially-crafted seminar classes and activities to its participants.
There are many different ways to look for available housing. Listed below are some suggestions for finding vacancies:
University of Denver Off-Campus Housing Service
The Office of Housing and Residential Education maintains an online platform available to students, faculty, and staff to help with finding housing or roommates.
The University of Denver owns and operates a number of rental units within walking distance of campus. More details are available on the Rental Properties webpage.
IMPORTANT: When responding to any housing advertisement or website, use caution and do not disclose personal or banking information until you have met the person who posted the listing. You should always walk through a residence before paying any deposit or rent (excluding a small application fee)--be wary of housing scams.
Apartment Locators: These websites are free for prospective renters and can be downloaded in the application store on your phone. They allow you to search for properties based on your needs and budget.
- Apartment List
- Apartment Guide
The popular community website www.craigslist.com allows users to post ads and to search for rental units and roommates.
- Bulletin Boards
Many grocery stores, DU campus buildings including the International House, and common spaces have areas where the public can post flyers for many things including landlords advertising a vacancy.
- Visit the Neighborhood Looking for Rent Signs
If you know of a particular neighborhood that you would like to live in, consider walking along its streets. Some property owners will advertise an opening by placing a 'Vacancy' or 'Room for Rent' sign in the yard or in the window.
Want to learn more about Housing?Visit the Housing and Residential Education Site
Once you've found an apartment, house, or room you'd like to rent, the landlord will likely have you complete several additional steps before you will be allowed to move in.
Any document that you are asked to sign becomes a legally binding contract so you must read the documents carefully before signing.
Signing a Lease
An application fee is often required to check a renter's credit and criminal history before being approved to lease a property.
The lease agreement is a legal contract obligating you to pay rent on a property for a specified amount of time. The contract should outline the terms of your lease, including the service you can expect from your landlord or rental agency. Before signing, review the document carefully. If you have questions, speak to the landlord or property manager so that you fully understand its terms. If you and the landlord have agreed to changes in the rental contract, make sure to get them in writing.
Although it is sometimes possible to "break" your lease, or move out before the date specified in the contract, it is often difficult to do so and you could be legally obligated to continue paying the rent.
Please visit the Additional Housing Resources section below for more information on your rights as a renter in Colorado.
You may be asked to pay a security deposit and/or a damage deposit when signing a lease. The security deposit is often equal to the first and last months' rent to cover possible damage to the unit or unpaid bills. In most cases, you will receive the entire deposit back when you move out, provided the apartment is clean and in good condition.
Before moving in, you should complete a check-in sheet. This sheet is a written document describing the condition of each room, including furniture, carpeting and appliances. Be sure to mark down anything that is damaged or stained or needs repair so that you will not be charged for previous damages. Keep a copy of the check-in sheet signed both by you and your landlord. If possible, take photographs of any damage you have recorded on the check-in sheet. When you move out, this documentation may help you resolve disputes with the landlord over the actual condition of the apartment when you moved in.
When you move out, the landlord is required by Colorado law to return the security deposit within thirty days of you leaving the property. Be sure to leave a forwarding address so the landlord can send you your deposit. If part of the deposit was not refunded, the landlord must give you a written notice explaining why e.g. unpaid utility bill, damages caused by the tenant, or cleaning costs. The landlord may not keep the deposit to cover normal wear and tear.
Renter's insurance provides compensation to a tenant in the event of losses caused by fire, theft, or vandalism, regardless of who is at fault. Insurance policies generally provide coverage for all items in your home, including clothing, electronics, and personal property, as well as any damage to the building itself. The cost of renter's insurance varies, but it is generally considered a good investment, especially if you own anything valuable in your home.
Before you move into the apartment, confirm with the landlord or rental company what utilities are included in your monthly rent. Common utility providers include:
- Water – Denver Water
- Electricity and Gas– Xcel Energy
- Television and Internet access – CenturyLink, Comcast, DirectTV or Dish Network
- Local Telephone Service - AT&T, CenturyLink
- Garbage and/or Sewage - Provided by the city of Denver
Unless the utility is paid for in your rent, you will need to contact the service provider directly to activate water, power, telephone, or Internet. Generally, service providers offer bundle packages, where you can receive a discounted price for multiple services such as cable TV, high-speed internet, local phone service and/or cellphone service.
Some utilities require a deposit before activation. If you are sharing an apartment with a roommate, you may choose to open utility accounts in different names so you are each responsible for payment. Make sure you discuss these responsibilities with each of your roommates. The person whose name is on the lease or utility account is ultimately responsible for paying any bills.
Some apartments include a washer and dryer in the unit, while others come with access to a common laundry facility that all tenants may use. If your apartment has neither, you will need to locate a laundry facility ("laundromat") elsewhere. Common laundry rooms and laundromats typically have machines that require payment in quarters. When using a public laundry facility, use caution regarding your clothes and personal items to ensure they are not damaged or stolen.