- How do I find housing off-campus?
- I’m looking for really hands-on help with securing off-campus housing – will you manage my full housing search process?
- Can you help me confirm if a place I’m considering is a good place to live?
- Can you help me find affordable housing?
- Can you help me sublease my rental?
- I’ve been receiving complaints from my neighbors and I’m not sure I’m more disruptive than my peers. What should I do?
- Check Ralphie’s List, your only university-affiliated resource for housing listings. Log in with your IdentiKey to start searching.
- Housing Fairs/Expos - Each year, OCHNR hosts several housing fairs where students can talk with local landlords and property managers and learn more about properties around Boulder.
- Apartment Complex guide - OCHNR keeps a printed guide of apartment complexes in the Boulder area. Stop by our office (UMC 313) to pick one up.
While our office has many resources, contacts, and tips for our students’ off-campus housing search, our staff are not able to act as brokers or case managers who are typically available for everything from recommendations, to lease signing, to moving help. A service like this could be provided through companies like Housing Helpers.
As a public institution, we must refrain from endorsing or discouraging business with private rental companies however, we are happy to provide tips on what to be mindful of when conducting your housing research. Some of these tips can include:
- Read a variety of reviews: look at online reviews from multiple sources to determine if there are current and on-going themes to concerns or compliments with the property owners or managers.
- Ask your peers: Ask other CU students what their experience has been living off campus and what their recommendations would be.
- Check out the space in person or through live/recently recorded video of the interior and exterior space you are interested in renting
- Get a lease review: Make an appointment with our free attorney for his advice and feedback on the lease for your potential rental.
While the term “affordable” can mean different things to different people, we can assist in narrowing down options that are likely to offer rent that is on the lower end of the market or tips on how to reduce rent (like living with roommates or sharing bedrooms). We can also provide information on city and county resources. Keep in mind that many government-sponsored resources for affordable housing prioritize the elderly, the disabled, and/or families with children. Monthly income minimums may also be required.
Subleasing can be more challenging during certain seasons (finding a subletter for the summer months can be difficult due to more people leaving Boulder vs entering) but we can suggest some ways to improve your process.
- Make sure you understand what your lease says about subletting. Some landlords may have very specific guidelines for how you can sublet.
- See how your landlord or property manager could assist in locating a subletter.
- Post your sublease on Ralphie’s List for free
- Check out the Roommates tab on Ralphie’s List to find people that may be looking for a place to live with roommates so you can reach out to them
- Look at online groups outside of the university. While Facebook or other online groups may be less secure than Ralphie’s list, which is only accessible by CU students, faculty and staff, you may be able to reach a broader audience through different websites.
When students get complaints, it is typically for a few reasons:
- Lack of knowledge around how local ordinances function. Our office can provide tons of information on the ordinance’s students tend to violate
- Lack of communication with neighbors. Students might not realize that they have non-student neighbors or that their student neighbors have a similar lifestyle. An important thing to remember when living off-campus is that you will be living near many non-students that live different lives than most of our student community. Even neighborhoods with lots of students can still be home to long-term Boulder residents (including the Hill! Many neighbors in the historic Hill neighborhood have called the Hill home for decades!). Always try to learn about the neighbors in the blocks around a property you are considering renting, so it meets your expectations.
- Basing behavior off of the behavior of peers. Even if you know other students living off campus who have not received complaints or citations even though they have violated Boulder ordinances. There are no guarantees, however, that the same actions won't have consequences any other time.
To avoid complaints and citations we recommend:
- Follow local ordinances, especially pertaining to noise. While there are daytime noise ordinances that should be adhered to, also remember that from 11 p.m. - 7 a.m., the “Unreasonable Noise” ordinance restricts nighttime noise.
- Get to know your neighbors. Having a good relationship with your neighbors and understanding when and how you or others have been impacting them so you can make adjustments will go a long way in reducing conflict. We have a card you can print out and drop off with your neighbors with your contact information so they can get in touch with you if concerns arise.
- Be thoughtful of the impacts your peers have had on the neighborhood recently. Even if you haven’t had a noisy gathering in months, your neighbors may have been dealing with impacts from others consistently and need a break.