Housing General Waitlist

Housing availability for winter quarter is extremely limited. As the campus prepares to welcome new students for winter quarter, housing staff will first work to accommodate new students. If there are any remaining spaces available, we will assign them to students on the general waitlist.

The more flexible you are when ranking room preferences in your application, the greater your chance of being assigned housing:

  • Return to the Housing Portal to update the room preferences listed in your housing application. Include all the room types and communities you agree to accept.

Please note: University offices close in late December for Campus Closure. Housing assignments resume at the start of winter quarter in January.

Though you are welcome to apply and keep your application on the waitlist in case a space becomes available, we strongly encourage students on the general waitlist to also actively pursue off-campus housing.

Off-campus Housing Resources

  • An online Renters Workshop to help students optimize their rental search and provide valuable tips for first-time renters.
  • The Places4Students.com rental listing site contains off-campus rentals in the communities surrounding UCSC, as well as roommate profiles of UCSC affiliates who are looking for off-campus housing. Viewing of rental listings and roommate profiles is restricted to UCSC affiliates so this is a great resource for all UCSC students!
    • Tip! Set up a Smart Search in Places4Students.com to find listings that match your preferences and to get email notifications when new matching listings are posted.

Important: If you successfully find off-campus housing before being assigned a space on campus, immediately cancel your waitlist application to avoid being charged a cancellation fee. more » 

Alternate Housing Offer   [Expand for more info]


Cancellation Policy

It is your responsibility to immediately cancel your application if your plans change and you are no longer interested in university housing. There is no fee for canceling an application prior to a space being assigned; cancellation fees will apply in all cases of a student canceling a confirmed housing space. more »

 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How are housing assignments made?

Once housing assignments are completed for students with priority status, any remaining available housing is assigned to students on the general waitlist. A small number of housing spaces may open up before the start of the quarter as cancellations occur, though we cannot predict when or how many. As cancellations occur, housing spaces are immediately reassigned to students from the waitlist.

Students are assigned off the waitlist based on the type of space available and the preferences a student includes in their waitlist application.

If a space matching one of your room preferences becomes available, you could be assigned to the space. You will not receive notification prior to being assigned, but a confirmation email will be sent to your UCSC email informing you that you’ve been assigned housing.

Assignments will first be made for students who have indicated a preference for the available room type before providing alternative offers to students who have requested room types that are not available. For example:

If Student A and Student B both prefer a residence hall single, but there are only residence hall triples available and only Student B has also listed a preference for a residence hall triple, Student B will be assigned to the available triple.

What are my chances of getting housing?

We strive to make housing assignments that align with student preferences. Because of this, and due to limited availability of housing space, it is difficult to answer this question. Demand for housing is high and far exceeds remaining availability. Once the majority of housing is assigned, new assignments are only possible as cancellations occur and we cannot predict when or what types of spaces may become available. As cancellations occur, housing spaces are immediately reassigned to students from the waitlist.

The type of housing a student prefers can impact the chances of receiving a housing assignment. The more flexible you are in your housing options, the greater your chance of being assigned housing. Residence hall triples are the most common room type on campus, and therefore the most likely type of housing to become available. If a residence hall triple is not among your preferences, we strongly recommend returning to the Housing Portal to update the room preferences listed in your housing application to include this room type, in addition to expanding your options to include all the room types and communities you agree to accept.

What is my place on the waitlist?

Because we are committed to offering students housing assignments that align with their preferences, this question is hard to answer. The waitlist is NOT a numbered list and does not work as such. The length of the waitlist correlates to the number of students wanting housing on campus. Students are assigned off this list based on what spaces are available and how well matched that space is to preferences indicated by the student, including consideration of compatibility with other roommates/housemates.

If my preferred type of housing isn’t available, will I be offered a room type I didn't list?

Best efforts are made to assign students to housing options they request. However, there is a finite number of each room type. If a room type you did not request becomes available, the Housing coordinator may offer you that spot. You will have 48 hours to accept. This deadline is strictly enforced.

Please review your UCSC email account on a regular basis.

I received an alternate housing offer. How do alternate housing offers work? Why was I offered alternate housing?

If there are no spaces that match your room preferences, you may be offered a different room type. This may include a housing space at another College, the Village, or the University Town Center.

If you were offered alternative housing, it means the room preferences you applied for were not available. We strongly encourage you to accept the alternate option if your goal is to secure university housing.

Alternate housing offers are made via UCSC email and require students accept the offer within forty-eight (48) hours or the offer is void and the space will be offered to another student. Closely monitor your UCSC email and/or set up email forwarding to have your UCSC email forwarded to another account you check regularly.

When will I know if I have a housing space?

When a student is assigned to housing, they get an automatic email titled "UCSC Housing Assignment Confirmation". That email will only contain confirmation of the assignment. Information about roommates and room placement will be sent in a separate email:

  • If you are assigned to fall housing, you will receive your roommate and room placement information by the end of August. While the majority of assignments are usually finished by mid-August, we may assign students through the first week of classes.
  • If you are assigned to winter housing, you will receive your roommate and room placement information by mid-December. Please note that university offices close in late December for Campus Closure. Housing assignments resume at the start of winter quarter in January.

We work diligently to house as many students as possible but, regretfully, are not able to provide university housing for all interested students.

Can I increase my chances of getting housing?

  • Mark or flag housing emails as Important/VIP/etc. on your phone and in your email.
  • Opt into texts from UCSC in MyUCSC Notification Preferences. The Housing Office may text you to check your email for an alternate housing offer.
  • Check your email daily. If you are offered an alternate housing assignment, you will have 48 hours to accept.
  • List as many room types as you would be comfortable taking. The more room types you list on your housing application, the more likely it is that an available room will match your preference increasing the likelihood of an assignment.

Why don’t I have priority?

Priority housing eligibility is determined by a number of factors. For winter 2024, only newly admitted students for winter term will receive priority. This housing priority page explains the housing priority criteria and requirements for 2023-24.

I haven't heard anything from the Housing Office. Does this mean I won't get housing?

If you haven't heard from us, it means you are still on the waitlist and that you currently don't have housing. There is more information about the waitlist and when you may learn about your housing on this FAQ.

Why does enrollment at UCSC increase while housing is in short supply?

Recognizing the ongoing housing crisis, campus leaders are working to hold total enrollment steady. Given the many variables involved with projecting enrollment, there are fluctuations year-to-year. We anticipate being able to serve more students once additional housing is available.

I still have questions. Who should I contact?

If you have questions that are not addressed on the list, please reach out to the housing community you applied to for further assistance.