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Please follow these steps on how to apply for housing at UCSF

Submitting an online application is free and implies no obligation. The commitment happens after you sign the Housing Agreement (known informally as the “lease”). Please read through the details of this entire page prior to applying for housing.

Step 1: Enter your information in the online application, and receive a confirmation email.

Step 2: Receive an “application completed” email once your application has been reviewed and approved.  Wait for Housing Services to contact you with an offer for placement.  If we do not contact you, it means we do not have a suitable space for you.  You should continue to seek Off-Campus Housing.

Step 3: If we contact you to offer a space, we will provide you instructions accessing your online Housing Agreement.  This is a legally binding Agreement, so be sure to carefully read and sign it.  Finally, make payments of your Initial Rent Payment by entering this information in your Tenant Portal.


Housing Services generally books apartments up to 90 days in advance.  For June housing, we usually start booking around March 1st.  For July – September housing, we begin making offers after April 10 (there is usually a high volume of application processing and offers being made at this time of year, so we continue to offer units ongoing throughout the summer).  At other times of the year, we offer apartments as soon as we know they are available.

Please Note: We are processing hundreds of offers between April and August.  Please be patient – we will email you if we have a space to offer you.  Email us with questions (do not call) at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Important Policies

All tenants who live in UCSF Housing are subject to a 2-year term limit.  This is measured as 24 months from your Occupancy Date.  Term limits are cumulative in a lifetime, regardless of university affiliation or break in tenancy. You are encouraged to be aware of this term limit, as you will not be extended in housing after your term limit.  UCSF Housing is primarily a program to ease the transition for new recruits to UCSF.  It is not a permanent housing situation.

It is important to know that Housing Services does not permit transfers between apartments, and you may not transfer your apartment to anyone else. 

If you smoke or have pets, you should not live in UCSF Housing.  Smoking and pets are not permitted.

Assignments Priority

Housing spaces are offered through a lottery based on the applicant’s move-in month and the type of apartment they are interested in.  Applicants may specify one move-in month and up to three unit types on their application. For example, those who need a 1-bedroom apartment on July 15 will be placed in a lottery with all other applicants who are interested in 1-bedroom apartments in July. We generally book apartments 30 to 60 days in advance of occupancy and sometimes up to 90 days in advance during the summer.

Applicants who are “New” to UCSF have priority over continuing UCSF affiliates.  “New” means you have never been a student or worked at UCSF in the past, and that you have a letter of admission or employment that proves you are starting your program at UCSF at a time that corresponds to housing move-in date.  Every applicant’s “New” status expires each May 31 (Example: If your program began March 1, 2018, you will be considered new through May 31, 2018.  If your program starts July 1, 2018, you will be considered “New” through May 31, 2019.)

The following priority does not apply to Faculty applicants.  All other applicants will be grouped according to their corresponding priority, and a lottery will be held among those applicants.  When the priority group applicant pool has been exhausted, a lottery will be held for the next priority group in the following order: 

Priority 1:  New applicants who submit proof of a dependent child (under 18) will be prioritized over all other applicants for 2 and 3 bedroom units. 

Priority 2: New applicants who are living with another adult who is either a documented UCSF housing-eligible affiliate (student, postdoc, resident, clinical fellow, faculty) -OR- New applicants who have a documented disabled third adult for whom the applicant is the primary caregiver.

Priority 3:  Applicants who are not new, but submit proof of a dependent child (under 18).

Priority 4:  Applicants who are not new, but are living with another adult who is either a documented UCSF housing-eligible affiliate (student, postdoc, resident, clinical fellow, faculty) -OR- who have a documented disabled third adult for whom the applicant is the primary caregiver.

Priority 5:  All other applicants who are new to the University.

Priority 6:  All other applicants who are not new to the University.

When an applicant refuses an offer from Housing Services, that applicant will be moved to the lowest priority in the applicant pool.  Housing Services will offer units based on your application preferences, so please be sure you are willing and prepared to accept any of the property types for which you are applying.

Accessible Housing and Disability Accommodations

Applicants (or their families) who have disabilities and require housing accommodations, including the accommodation of an assistance animal, should indicate these requests on their application and contact the relevant disability office. Please see our Accessible Housing Policy.

Student Disability Services (for students & their families)
(415) 476-6595 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Disability Management Services, UCSF Human Resources (for non-students & their families)
(415) 502-4713 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Pets and Support Animals

Pets are not permitted in Housing Services.

If you have a legal Service Animal or a documented Assistance Animal, you must register with one of the offices above (See “Accessible Housing and Disability Accommodations”).  The respective office will notify Housing Services of a reasonable accommodation for you.  On your application, please check the box confirming that you have a disability that requires accommodation.  If your animal is approved, Housing Services will notify you by email.

If you are applying for a shared double room or a single room in a shared apartment or house, please be aware that it is often difficult to appropriately place an animal.  Advance communication is necessary so that Housing Services can check with existing tenants that they have no medical condition that precludes them from living with an animal.

You must obtain written permission from Housing Services before you bring an animal onto the property, regardless of any permits or medical documentation that are already in your possession.

Information on Bed Bugs

California Assembly Bill 551 requires landlords to provide this information to prospective renters and current tenants.  The availability of this information to you does not imply that any specific property has had a bed bug infestation; this information is provided as general information in compliance with state law.

Application Tips

1) Fill out the application as much as possible, even if it’s not a required field.
2) Be sure to follow the instructions about uploading your eligibility documentation. This is required and your application will be returned if you don’t upload valid documentation.
3) Please submit only one application, regardless of where you want to live or what type of accommodation you want. If you applied with us in the past and cannot access your application, please email us to have your application reactivated. Duplicate applications may result in a longer response time.
4) You will get a confirmation email once you submit your application and another email once we have reviewed your application. This may take up to 3 days (or longer during our peak season in the Spring). The email will come from .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Please add this email to your address book. We’ve noticed some initial emails from our system may be going into your junk or spam folders. Please check these folders and approve future emails from this address.

Please note: UCSF Housing Services does not offer meal plan options. For campus restaurants and related services, please see Retail Services.

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