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Off-Campus Housing & Exemption Process

All SUNY Plattsburgh students have an obligation to live on-campus for at least two years. Before you make any decision, be sure you do your research and fill out the appropriate forms. This site is designed to help you understand your options and explain the exemption process. 

Please note that SUNY Plattsburgh Campus Housing and Community Living is offering this website as a resource for our students. Campus housing at SUNY Plattsburgh does not deal with off-campus landlord disputes, issues that may arise in off-campus housing, review leases or offer suggestions for off-campus apartments. Those items are the responsibility of the student looking to move off campus. Students are obligated to go through the approval process to be considered for off-campus housing. 

Remember — Convenience Matters!

Though there are some advantages to moving off-campus, there is one big disadvantage — living off-campus is far more inconvenient. As a busy student who may be working, a club participant and taking classes, access and location can be the difference between being successful or unsuccessful. Students who live on-campus do better academically and socially than their off-campus peers in-part because of the conveniences it provides. Here are some conveniences that would be lost by moving off campus:

  • Classes and campus resources are just a walk away
  • Fewer worries about finding parking and having to drive in harsh weather conditions. (College rarely closes for big snow events.)  
  • Access to laundry facilities 24 hours a day 
  • Fast high speed WiFi 
  • One bill pays for it all (heat, electricity, snow/trash removal, laundry, WiFi, etc.)
  • Safety (24-hour University Police, cameras, card access and community living staff)
  • Access to a community of your peers and college events 

Things to Consider Before Moving Off Campus

  • Commute: How far is your commute to the college? What would this commute look like if the roads or sidewalks were iced over? What will you miss out on if you don’t have easy access to events or resources? Once you go home at the end of the day, will you come back for an event? What if you have a class in the morning, but don’t have one till the evening? Commuting requires time and time you may not have the ability to spare. 
  • Cost: Not all rents include everything. Be sure to check that your rent includes things like electricity, heat, laundry, trash/snow removal and/or WiFi. These items individually can be costly and you will need to provide them. 
  • Food: Grocery shopping and food preparation takes time and effort. Are you someone who is good at planning out their food preparation time or will you just end up eating out all the time?  You could be paying between $3–$5 dollars more for each meal than if you had an on-campus meal plan. 
  • Laundry: How far will you be from a laundromat? Do you have a car or will you be walking/Ubering your bag of laundry to the local laundromat? You typically have to pay per machine. You cannot bring your clothes back to campus to use our on-campus facilities. 
  • Your Lease: Most off-campus housing leases obligate you to for a full year and will require you to pay a down payment. Landlords are under no obligation to release students from your contract, even if you’re graduating in December or interning back home in the spring.  So, you may be obligated to continue paying for something that you are no longer living in. Campus housing will release you with no penalties for both of these items. 
  • What does the apartment look like: Don’t trust hearsay or your peers about the condition of an apartment. Pictures can be deceiving and you should walk through an apartment before signing a lease. There are some really nice apartments off-campus, but there are also some that are terrible. It is important to do your research and walk through your apartments. You also want to make sure that there are no existing damages that you could get blamed for later. 
  • Maintenance: Does the apartment have access to a regular maintenance person or will you have to pay out of pocket to have something fixed? Maintenance can be pretty costly, even if you will get reimbursed for the cost of fixing the item. 
  • Parking: Does your apartment include parking or will it be street-side parking? Are there enough parking spots for every tenant or just a few? Finding street-side parking can be tricky and costly if you get towed. Also during winter storms, street-side parking becomes prohibited. 

Moving Off Campus

Additional Questions

If you have any questions or are still confused by the process, please contact campus housing at [email protected] or call 518-564-3824. It is strongly recommended that you do not sign any leases until you know for certain that you have been approved to move off-campus. 

Off-Campus Listings

To start your off-campus housing search we recommend that you start at the Off-Campus Housing Marketplace

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