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Frequently Asked Questions

Everything you want to know about BYU off-campus housing

General Questions
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    Can a student cancel their 2020 Fall contract?
    Paragraph 22 in the 2020-2021 BYU Student-Landlord Rental Agreement allows students to cancel their contract 90 days before the start date of their contract. To cancel a contract, a student must submit a written notice to their landlord along with a $50 cancellation fee. The landlord then has 30 days to refund any prepaid rent or deposit money. If notice to terminate is given after the 90th day before the contract start date, the student may not use paragraph 22 to terminate their contract.

    For example: If paragraph 2 of the contract specifies that occupancy will start on August 24, 2020, the student would be required to give the landlord written notice and the $50 cancellation fee by no later than May 26, 2020. If the student waits until after May 26 to give notice, he or she will not be able to cancel the contract under paragraph 22.
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    Can a landlord put a hold on my BYU account?
    A landlord may request that an academic hold which affects admissions, diploma, registration, and transcripts be placed on a student’s account. However, the following required steps must be complete before an academic hold may be requested and enforced.

    i. In the case of a dispute where the parties are unable to reach an agreement on their own, either party may request mediation through the Center for Peace and Conflict Resolution (CPCR). Per paragraph 9 (Dispute Settlement) of the Student-Landlord Agreement, BYU contracted landlords and students agree to participate in mediation and/or arbitration offered through the CPCR as requested by either party.

    ii. Mediation is the first step and is completed through the CPCR using trained mediators to facilitate a discussion between the parties.

    iii. If mediation is unsuccessful, either party can request an arbitration through the CPCR. During the arbitration, both parties submit information to an arbitrator who then decides the outcome. The arbitration decision will have certain requirements that must be met.

    iv. If the arbitrator rules against the student and if the student fails to comply with the arbitration order, the landlord may then contact the OCHO in writing requesting an academic hold be placed on the student’s account until the student complies with the ruling. Only then may the OCHO place an academic hold on a student’s account. The hold is not a financial hold, but will affect the student’s admission, registration, transcripts and graduation.
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    Am I eligible to live in BYU contracted housing?
    To be eligible to live in BYU Contracted Housing a student must be enrolled and attending classes at one of 13 different institutions:

    • BYU
    • BYU ELC
    • UVU
    • Steven Henager College
    • Provo College
    • Paul Mitchell Schools of Beauty
    • Acaydia School of Aesthetic
    • Aveda Institutes
    • Nomen-Global Language Centers
    • American Institute of Medical and Dental Technology
    • Renaissance Academie
    • Selnate International School
    • LDS Institute

    In order for an LDS Institute program to be an acceptable alternative, a student must be enrolled and seeking institute credit. If you are a landlord and would like to verify a potential tenant is currently attending LDS Institute, please ask the student to provide you with a copy of his/her enrollment confirmation email. Alternatively, you can visit and contact LDS Institute directly.
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    Does eligibility for an institute class have an age limit?
    Yes, individuals may enroll in institute class through their 31st birthday.
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    Can a landlord refuse to rent to me based on my age?
    Age is not a protected class under the federal and state Fair Housing Acts, which means that landlords can set an age limit for individuals living in their facilities. In addition, if you are younger than 18, your landlord may require that you have a co-signer on your lease.
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    Do I have to live in BYU contracted housing?
    All single undergraduate students are required to live in contracted housing or apply for a housing waiver. Waivers are given to students whose situation requires an exception to university policy. Individuals desiring a waiver will need to prove that they have a special circumstances or hardships that necessitate living outside of Contracted housing. Otherwise, the expectation is to live in Contracted housing.

    The Contracted Housing system allows our office to work with issues in the housing environment more effectively in order to create an environment for its single students living off campus that is conducive to their moral and spiritual growth as well as their academic performance. The owners of contracted rental units agree to: (1) adequately separate single men and women, (2) exercise reasonable efforts to maintain BYU Residential Living Standards, (3) maintain the facilities in good repair, and (4) not abuse basic tenant rights.
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    Who qualifies for housing waivers?
    There are circumstances that may make it difficult to live in contracted housing. Waivers are available to students who have special circumstances or hardships that require living outside of contracted housing. This includes waivers specifically for Living with Family. General waivers are reviewed individually on a case by case consideration, again, looking for special circumstances or hardships.
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    What happens if I choose not to live in BYU contracted housing?
    Non-Compliance Fees will be placed on a student's account each semester/term if they are not in compliance with contracted housing requirements. This could be due to failure to verify address, not living in contracted housing, or not having a current waiver that has been approved by the waiver/appeal committee. Students who do not update their residential address or who live in housing not contracted by the university and who are not excused by the BYU Off-Campus Housing Office are subject to the following sanctions:

    1. Non-compliance fees up to $175.00 will be incurred, and future registration may be stopped, until the student verifies that he or she is living in or will be living in university-contracted housing.
    2. Students falsifying their addresses will be subject to the above consequences as well as disciplinary action by the university for Honor Code violations.

    When a student signs an agreement to live in a facility not contracted by the university and has not been excused from the university housing requirement, these sanctions will be applied even though the student's tenancy extends beyond the current semester or term in which the student is enrolled. A student in this situation will have to either move from the uncontracted housing unit, regardless of the consequences, or forego registration and other privileges at the university until complying with this policy.
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    Who is exempt from living in BYU housing?
    Post-Baccalaureate, graduate and married students are not required to live in contracted housing. Being divorced does not specifically exempt someone from living in BYU Contracted Housing. A landlord may choose not to rent to someone who is divorced but it would be their choice and not anything we mandate in any way.
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    Can I get out of my contract for... (ex. marriage, mission, graduation, etc.)?
    Can I get out of my contract for... (ex. marriage, mission, graduation, etc.)? The Student-Landlord Rental Agreement allows a student to terminate their agreement for graduation, missions, marriage, and for internships required for graduation. These special provisions are possible with a 120 day written notice given to the landlord. Also, some landlords do have special provisions in their contracts or addenda for early termination. Check with your landlord. Please note that individuals that terminate a contract early for these reasons will still forfeit their security deposit.
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    Is it possible to find housing with less than a year contract?
    It is possible, but not likely close to campus.
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    How do I sell my contract?
    Selling your contract is best accomplished by listing it with a listing service (i.e., etc.) You can also list your contract with Off-Campus Housing here: Submit a Listing

    Make sure your landlord knows that you are selling. He/she can help you fill out the required forms. If you still need help, give us a call (801.422.1513).
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    I'm having a hard time getting my deposit back. What can I do?
    Please utilize the below resources:
    • Deposits

    Then give your landlord the following document
    • Tenant's Notice To Provide Deposit Disposition

    If you still have problems, contact the Center for Conflict Resolution (801.422.5068) and/or give us a call (801.422.1513).
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    How is an apartment's maximum total occupancy determined? We've got plenty of room. Can we add one more?
    Occupancy limits are not determined by the space available nor the number of rooms within the facility. Rather, an apartment's maximum total occupancy is determined by Provo City and the zoning restrictions placed upon the property. These restrictions take into account location, construction year, available parking, city planning, etc. BYU/Facilities must adhere to zoning requirements and will therefore not approve a tenant that will make a facility exceed its authorized limits.

    Still, plan on squeezing one more in? Here's an example of what can happen if zoning restrictions are ignored. This student's waiver was denied because the unit would have been over-occupied. A few days later we received the following fee appeal:

    "This off-campus housing waiver was the biggest hassle. After submitting my waiver and getting it denied, Utah Zoning Occupancy came to the house and told us 3 out of 6 people had to be moved in 2 weeks. Rent and Utilities for the remaining 3 people doubled, so we all looked for a new place. I had to find new places for the Summer term and sign new contracts for Fall and Winter within 2 weeks! After moving, we had to do the most meticulous cleaning checks, clear out all furniture and miscellaneous items, and scrub every part of the house to avoid further fees. That wasn't something I was planning to dedicate so much time to... I did move, and still got the fee I was trying to avoid by moving. I may have changed my address online too late for this fee, I don't know for sure when I did that. However, moving takes a lot more effort..."
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    What do I need to know about service/assistance animals?
    While we realize that accommodating service/assistance animals is not ideal for most tenants/landlords, federal law requires most landlords/tenant to accommodate verified support animals. To that end, we suggest the following documents to better educate yourself on your options:
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    How do I update my residential address?
    For instructions on updating your residential address, please click here.
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