New Students FAQ

Getting Started

How do I apply for housing?

Incoming students are directed by Admissions to fill out their housing application via the MyRutgers portal.

Is there a fee to apply for housing?

A housing deposit of $200 is required at the time the application is submitted.  This is a non-refundable fee. However, for students remaining in housing through their spring semester it will be credited to their term bill in January.

Where is the best place to live?

We’ve heard from our students that they love wherever they live, and for various reasons. Each campus offers something different. Busch is a suburban campus with many first-year students as well as special living options related to the many science and engineering academic departments on campus. College Avenue is the most urban campus and is close to downtown New Brunswick and student-centered shopping and dining. Cook/Douglass offers a wooded landscape and is home to programs in biology, environmental studies, animal sciences, and the arts. Livingston is a suburban and rapidly growing campus with many modern amenities and brand-new spaces for hanging out with friends.

Are students guaranteed housing?

No student is guaranteed housing, however, Residence Life has not had an issue housing every first-year student that has requested housing by the June application deadline (indicated in the MyRutgers portal).

I am a new transfer student. How do my housing application preferences work?

New transfer students preference their campus and their housing type (single, double, suite-style, apartment) in their housing application. This is different from first-year students who can only preference their campus.

What does my confirmation e-mail mean?

After you fill out the housing application, you will receive a confirmation e-mail. This e-mail verifies that your application was submitted.

How are incoming students assigned housing?

Housing for new students is assigned on a first-come, first-served basis, so students should apply as early as possible and by the priority deadline of June 15, 2024. Although students have the ability to indicate their housing preferences within the application, based on available space at the time of submission, there is no guarantee a student will be assigned to the campus/building of their choice.

What is the cost of living on campus?

Once students are made aware of their room assignments, rate and billing information can be found by visiting our rates and billing website. Rates have not yet been released for the 2024-2025 academic year.

Can I change information on my housing application?

You can change anything on your application as many times as you want before June 30. Changing information does not affect your application submission date used when making room assignments.

When will I find out my housing assignment?

Assignments for first-year and transfer students are released during the first week of August. Students receive an email directing them to a website to view their assignment and roommate information.

Roommates/Living Options

How am I assigned a roommate?

Students submit their lifestyle preferences when filling out the housing application. These factors are used to best match appropriate roommates.

I am a first year student. Can I room with my friend who is an upper class student?

First year students can only request to room with other first year students.

Are there any special living options?

Yes! Rutgers has over forty different on-campus communities for students of all academic backgrounds and special interests. Learn more by visiting our special living options website and review the various deadlines for applications.

Are all residence halls co-ed?

Most of our residence halls are co-ed by room, meaning that male students will live next door to female students on the same floor or house. There are four all-female spaces through the Douglass Residential College (DRC) on the Cook/Douglass campus, as well as a floor of all female engineering students in the Busch suites. All of these single-gender living options can be requested through the special living options portion of the housing application.

Is it possible to request a room change? If so, how?

Students can begin requesting room changes during the third week of each semester. Students can follow this link and login to the room change form. A staff member will contact you via email or in person to review options. Residence Life will also try to work out any issues between roommates by having the RA and other staff members hold discussions before granting a room change.

Can I request a roommate?

Yes. All roommate requests must be mutual, so please guarantee that each roommate has applied accordingly. It is also highly recommended that roommates submit their housing applications on the same date to ensure their applications are processed together.

I am a transfer student. Can I room with my friend who is an incoming first year student or who is an upper class student?

Transfer students can only request to room with other transfer students.

What if I need to live on College Avenue because I need to live near Chabad or Hillel?

Be sure to list College Avenue Campus as your preferred campus on your Housing Application, and add please add "College Avenue for Sabbath purposes" in the Special Information section of the application.

Does Rutgers offer any gender neutral housing options?

Yes. Rutgers is one of over 50 universities with gender neutral housing options. At Rutgers, the program was created in response to requests from the LGBTQ community and is intended to create accepting living environments, not spaces for romantic couples. Gender neutral bathrooms are secured for use only by those living in the community, and include latchable shower doors instead of curtains for additional privacy.

Moving In/Amenities

What happens if immunizations and other medical documents are not submitted by University deadlines?

We take the health and safety of out residents very seriously.  If students are not medically cleared through health services with immunizations and other medical documents, they will be unable to get their assignment in August or move into their hall.

Is there wireless access in the residence hall rooms?

All of our residence hall rooms and common spaces have wireless access

Are there laundry facilities in each residence hall?

Each residence hall has access to laundry facilities that cater to its community. The current cost is $1.50 to wash and $1.50 to dry a load of laundry. Students can pay using quarters or by downloading the Speed Queen application onto their mobile devices.

Can I bring a small refrigerator or microwave?

Microwaves are prohibited in residence halls, suites, or apartments that are already equipped with a Microfridge/microwave. In the event an apartment/suite does not come equipped with a microwave/microfridge in the room or a communal space, students are permitted to bring their own.

Is there Internet in the rooms?

All residence halls also have wireless access in the common area lounges and rooms.

What should I bring with me when I move in?

A list of suggested items to bring with you when you move onto campus as well as a list of prohibited items can be found in our download PDF!

Who cleans the residence hall spaces?

Most first-year students will live in a community with a shared bathroom on the floor where they will reside. This shared bathroom will be cleaned regularly and hand soap and toilet paper will be provided. Students living in suite style housing (such as first-year students in B.E.S.T. or the Busch Suites in McCormick, Winkler, Thomas, Morrow, Judson, and Crosby) and apartment style housing are responsible for the cleaning of and toiletries supply in their bathrooms for the unit.

What amenities are provided in the shared bathrooms?

Common/shared bathrooms are cleaned regularly and supplied with toilet paper and hand soap.

What comes standard in every room?

In your residence hall and apartment, you will find: a twin extra-long bed frame and mattress*, closet or wardrobe, dresser, desk, chair, drapes or blinds, carpeting or tile floor, micro-fridge, high-speed internet, and cable television service. Visit your residence hall page to learn what comes in your room and what you will find in your building.

Be aware of what you cannot bring into a residence hall or apartment: pets, candles, incense, refrigerator, toaster, hot plate, air conditioner, firearms, weapons, fireworks, grill and charcoal, lighter fluid, laundry machines, dish washers, deep freezers, halogen or oil lamps, heaters, hover boards, and drones. Review all residence hall guidelines.

*Sojourner Truth Apartments provide a full/double size bed rather than twin extra-long.


Where can I find a list of all residence hall policies?

A list of all residence hall policies can be found on our residence hall guidelines website.

What is the policy regarding guest visitation?

Currently, under COVID-19 protocol, only other on-campus residents may be a resident’s guests.  No off-campus, or non-affiliated guests are allowed.  This policy is under review for the 2022-2023 academic year.


What is the policy regarding hanging things in the room?

We want you to decorate your room to make it feel as comfortable as possible. Nothing can be hung from the ceiling or any sprinkler or fire suppression equipment. All posters and wall hangings should be hung with non-permanent tape or hooks and should cover no more than thirty percent of the wall space in the room for fire safety reasons. Decoration lights can be hung if they are UL approved and unplugged when no one is present in the room.

What security measures are in place in the residence halls?

All entrances and exits are equipped with cameras that are linked back to the Rutgers Police Department. These cameras are also monitored by undergraduate student supervisors during evening shifts. All buildings require students to swipe their ID cards to enter, and only residents of a building have access to swipe into that building.

What do I do if I lock myself out of my room?

During normal business hours, Monday through Friday – 8:30AM to 5:00PM, students can go to their campus Residence Life office to sign out a key for their room. After 5:00PM or on the weekends, students can contact the staff member that is on call (numbers will be posted in each hall) to gain access to their room. If necessary, steps will be taken to change locks to inhibit anyone who should not have access from entering the students’ residence hall rooms.

How do students gain access to their halls?

Students’ access will be activated as part of their RU ID card. Students will use these cards to swipe at access card readers to gain entry to their residence hall. In order to visit another residence hall, a student must be let in by a resident of that hall.

What do I do if I lose my RU ID card and cannot get into my building?

During normal business hours, Monday through Friday – 8:30AM to 5:00PM, students can go to their campus Residence Life office to purchase another ID card.  After 5:00PM or on the weekends, students can contact the staff member that is on call (the on-call schedule and phone numbers are posted in each hall) to gain access to their building and discuss solutions until they can get a new RU ID card. If necessary, steps will be taken to remove access from the card to inhibit anyone who should not have access from entering residence halls.

Can I smoke (electronic)/cigarettes in my room?

No. Electronic cigarettes or vaping of any kind is prohibited. Smoking is prohibited inside buildings in New Jersey, and therefore smoking is prohibited within the residence halls. Learn more about the smoking policy.

Is there a curfew for students?

Residence Life treats all of its residents as adults and does not impose a curfew. However, a schedule of quiet hours are strictly enforced to maintain respect in the community.

Can I loft the bed in my room?

Currently, no lofting is allowed due to safety concerns and per our fire safety department due to sprinkler head locations.


How can a student get in contact with their resident assistant (RA) or a professional Residence Life staff member?

Each residence assistant will post information on how to contact them and other Residence Life staff members in community areas. Every campus has a Residence Life Office that is staffed from 8:30AM to 5:00PM. Walk-ins are welcome in each office or students can call these offices with the following numbers:

Busch: 848-445-2561
College Avenue: 848-932-7209
Cook/Douglass: 848-932-9363
Livingston: 848-445-4086

Each campus office has a Campus Director (CD) who oversees the residential communities on that given campus and the Residence Life Coordinators (RLC) who oversee smaller residential areas on each campus. If a student needs to contact any staff after 5:00PM, an emergency number will be posted in each residence hall or the students can call 848-932-7211 and campus police will assist them with an emergency. For medical/life safety emergencies after hours, please call 911.

Is there summer housing for students?

Summer housing is available for students enrolled in courses or involved in academic research at the University. Information will be advertised via and on social media via,

Do students need to move out over breaks?

Students do not need to move their belongings out of residence halls over Thanksgiving, Winter Break, and Spring Break. Halls remain open for Thanksgiving break, however, most residence halls close during Winter and Spring breaks. Students cannot be in closed buildings during these breaks. Some residence halls remain open over breaks for students who need to remain on campus for these periods of time; visiting international students are an example of students that would be eligible to take advantage of this opportunity. All students must move out of their rooms after the academic year is complete, typically in early May. A full list of halls and their contract type are available on our rates and billing page.

Can I cancel my housing contract?

Housing contracts are signed for an academic year. Select reasons qualify for release from the contract and more information can be found here.