Housing Selection FAQ

The following FAQs are for Housing Selection 2023-2024. Please select your student status for the most accurate FAQ.

Current Student FAQ

Table of Contents:

  1. General FAQ
  2. Rising Sophomore FAQ
  3. Group Room Selection FAQ
  4. Meals FAQ

General FAQ
Where do I complete the housing application and select my housing?

The Student Life Portal (formerly known as the Housing Portal) is where you will sign the housing application, select housing, select roommates, and complete any other forms needed.

I signed the Housing + Dining License, but didn’t get a timeslot?

Students who have signed the Housing + Dining License by March 1 will be emailed time slots for room selection on March 23.

I missed selection. What do I do?

Rising Sophomores who do not select housing by the end of day on March 29 will be assigned housing.

Upperclass students who do not select housing by end of day on April 1 will not be able to participate in selection.

Can I renew my current room for next year?

Room renewals are not available in the Sophomore area: Hill Houses, Alcove suites, Alcove Singles, and South Hall.

Students in a room/apartment with more than one person must fill all bed spaces in the room/apartment to be able to “renew your bed”. A single bed space cannot be renewed (unless it is a Single Room or a Studio Apartment).

How do I update my profile questions or gender identity so that I can find a more accurate roommate match?

Log into the Student Life Portal. 1) Click on the hamburger in the top left corner; 2) click on your name. Here you can update all personal information pages. 

What if I can’t find a room that I want during selection?

Rising Sophomores: We encourage you to select a room. If you do not select a room, you will be placed in a room. Students may submit a room change request and if your preference becomes available, and if you are next on the room change list, we may offer it you.

Upperclass Students: If you wish to live on campus, we encourage you to select a room. Students may submit a room change request and if your preference becomes available, and if you are next on the room change list, we may offer it you.

Is there a waitlist for housing?

Yes. The waitlist is for students who did not participate in room selection, but wish to reside on campus. The waitlist will be available on the Student Life Portal after room selection.

Will there be any room changes over the summer?

Residence Life will only be processing emergency and gender-related room changes over the summer. All other room changes will wait until after moving in. 

Do any of the Residence Halls allow pets?

Pets are not permitted other than fish (not lizards, turtles, etc.) in aquariums of 10 gallons or less. This includes visiting pets like a friend or family pet, stray cats, etc.

Students needing an Emotional Support Animal (ESA) or a service animal are required to complete a medical accommodation request prior to bringing an animal onto campus. Click here to learn more.

Click here for RISD’s Emotional Support Animal Policy

Click here for RISD’s Service Animal Policy

Are there parking options for students on campus?

Unfortunately, RISD is not able to provide parking options at this time for students. However, the City of Providence has plenty of parking options for students. Please click here to learn more. Students are also welcome to park on RISD’s campus overnight and on weekend – click here to learn more.

Do seniors have priority housing timeslots?

Yes – seniors will receive priority housing timeslots for the Upperclassmen Housing Area.

Can Juniors, Seniors, and 5th Year Seniors live in Sophomore housing options?

Yes. Rising Sophomores have priority to select from those rooms, but if rooms are available during your timeslot, you may select it. Rising juniors and seniors may also form a group with a sophomore and have the sophomore place them.

I have a financial need for a specific price range, what is the best way of securing a room within that financial range?

We are always going to work with students who have financial need for specific room prices. There are a few ways to go about this:

  1. Sign the Housing License to receive a timeslot and select a room that is available within your price range. This method does not guarantee that type of room will be available.
  2. If you are unable to find a room within your price range you may sign up for the waitlist, available after room selection. We will do everything possible to get you into that type of room.
Will Jones Storage be available for the summer and how will that work when we select our fall room after we move out for the summer?

Yes, Jones storage will be available again. Students will sign up through Jones and Residence Life will work over the summer to ensure your belongings are delivered to the accurate fall assignment. More information will be available about Jones Storage in May.

Rising Sophomores FAQ
I am a rising sophomore and want to live off-campus. Can I?

RISD has a 2 year residency requirement which requires all First Year and Sophomore students to live on campus. Rising sophomores may request a residency waiver only if they 1) are married, 2) older than 21 years of age as of September 1, or 3) living with legal guardian/parent. Sophomores who meet one of these qualifications and choose to live off campus must submit a Residency Waiver Request on the Portal by March 1. Typically very few sophomores are allowed to reside off-campus.

I’m a rising sophomore who has been approved a residency waiver. Can a friend of mine, who is also a rising sophomore, live off campus with me?

If you are approved for a residency requirement waiver, that waiver only applies to you. If you want a friend, who is also a rising sophomore, to live off campus with you they must also be approved for a residency waiver requirement. Please note that they must be either 21+ older, married, or have a permanent address in Rhode Island (a friend’s permanent address off campus would not qualify).

If I am a Sophomore, but want to live with a junior or senior. Can I?

Although we strongly suggest that Sophomores live in the Sophomore area, they may join a group with upper-class students if they wish to do so.  They must join a group with one or more upperclass students in it to select a space outside of the Sophomore area. They will also not select a space until the upperclass student’s timeslot. The group leader should be the upperclass student with the best timeslot. 

What if I am a Sophomore who prefers to live in an upperclass apartment but do not have a group to join?

Rising sophomores in a roommate group with upperclass students may select housing with their group in the upperclass area March 31 – April 1. If you are not part of a group with upperclass students, you will only be able to select housing in the sophomore area. If you do not select housing by March 29, you will be assigned housing.

What housing options will Sophomores have to choose from?

Sophomore students will be able to choose from housing options within 15 West (alcove suites, floors 4 and 5), Hill Houses, and South Hall. 

I’m a rising Sophomore who is part of a group with Upperclassmen. What should I do if there are no options for our group during our group selection time during Upperclassmen housing selection?

You will need to split up the group and select housing individually. There should still be housing options available in the sophomore area.

Group Room Selection FAQ

Group room selection refers to students wishing to create a group of friends to then select a living space together. For example, three students creating a group to select a three-bedroom apartment together.

Remember that shared rooms must be selected by a ‘group’ of students who wish to room together. Discuss room preferences with your friends in advance of room selection.

How do I create a group?
  1. Decide among your friends who you want to form a group with.
  2. After receiving time-slots, choose who in your group will be the Group Leader. The person who has the earliest time-slot should be the group leader.
  3. The Group Leader is responsible for: 1) creating the group in the portal, and 2) assigning group members to other beds and/or rooms to fill the unit.
  4. The Group Leader should make sure that everyone in the group has filled out a timeslot request. You can do this by searching for those students in the ‘Roommate Group’ page of the Student Life Portal. If someone is not appearing, ask them if they requested a time-slot. If the student has not done this, they will need to do this ASAP.
  5. The Group Leader must select their bed in a room or suite during their appointed day and time-slot in the ‘Group Room Selection’ Page on the Portal.
  6. After the Group Leader has selected their own bed, the portal will ask the group leader to assign the group members to the other rooms/bed spaces in the suite or apartment.  The Group Leader must fill every space in the unit. If there is a vacancy in the living unit you are trying to select, you will not be able choose that unit. For example, a group of 3 students would not be able to select an empty 4 bedroom apartment.
  7. Select ‘Reserve Bed’ and all rooms in the unit will then be assigned to the members of the group.
Can my group select a room or apartment with more available bed spaces than people in my group?

No. You must have enough members in your group to fill all beds in the unit that you select in the portal during room selection. For example, if there are 3 people in a group, they will be unable to select a completely empty 4 bedroom apartment. However, if that 4 bedroom apartment already has 1 individual in it, they may fill the remaining bed spaces.

It is helpful to have alternate group plans in the event that the room type you wish to select is not available.

What should we do in advance if we plan on selecting housing as a group?

We highly encourage groups to confirm they have complete their group in the Student Life Portal. Groups should have a discussion before their timeslot of what their back up plans will be if they cannot select what they want. For example, if there are no more remaining triples or three-bedroom apartments left for a 3 person group, how will you proceed in selecting your rooms?

If I am part of a group, can I leave the group and select housing on my own?

Yes. You may leave the group and select housing at the timeslot you were assigned. As always, we encourage you to communicate this with your group members so they can plan accordingly.

Meals FAQ
Do meals come with my housing placement?

Yes, each housing placement on campus comes with a meal allotment.

All on-campus rooms include a dining allotment and campus mailbox.  Students living in Essential or Suite Experience rooms have a complete dining plan and students living in Apartments have a partial plan .  

Students in apartments who prefer not to cook as often can add meals or even unlimited MET access to their room. All students living on campus regardless of class year will have a dining allotment based on the room they are in.

Does the cost I see for a room include the meal allotment?

Yes, there is no additional charge for a meal allotment.

Can I lower or completely remove my meal allotment?

No. The meal allotments included with on-campus rooms are fixed and “use it or lose it”.  Students should plan to use their dining benefit if they are living on campus.