Off Campus Living and Lottery

Updated for the 2019-2020 Housing Process

As a residential college, Middlebury requires all active, full-time students to live on campus. However, each year, a small number of students are approved to live off campus in apartments or houses in and around the town of Middlebury. We trust that these students will make positive choices in becoming a part of their new community.

In order to provide a fair approach for approving students to live off campus the College conducts an annual lottery in the Spring term for the following academic year. In the event that some students living off-campus graduate in February, the College may offer a second lottery in the Fall Term to fill the spots on the list vacated by the graduating students. 

As this is a lottery process, all requests are not guaranteed to be approved. Students should not make any off campus housing arrangements or sign a lease until they have received final approval from the College.  Making premature arrangements does not ensure approval. Students approved to live off-campus receive a fee reduction for living, and if they choose, eating off campus (see below for details). 

Students approved for off campus living must make their own housing arrangements and are required to provide, and update as necessary, details on where they are living and who owns the property.

It is a violation of College policy for students to reside off campus without prior approval.

The Lottery

The College conducts an annual lottery in the Spring term for the following academic year. The total number of students permitted to live off campus is set by the Administration in the Spring, and this number is maintained throughout the following academic year. In the event that some students living off-campus graduate in February, the College will offer a second lottery in the Fall Term to fill the spots on the list vacated by the graduating students. 

Eligible students will receive an email from Residential Systems Coordinator (RSC) Karin Hall-Kolts, when the application is available outlining the process for the upcoming lottery.

Students may apply as individuals or in groups of up to eight.  Applications are submitted via an electronic form.  Only when applications are being received will the link to the form be provided in the sidebar on this page.

At the lottery, even after the designated number of available spots have been filled all the remaining applications will be drawn so as to document a clear order of selection. However, this is not a "waitlist" and participants who do not get selected should not anticipate a later offer. The day after the lottery each participant will receive an email from the RSC relating the outcome of their request.  Those students who have been approved will be given a short period of time before they will need to confirm their intentions and commit by submitting an Off Campus Commitment form and Housing Contract.

NOTE: Students must be approved for off campus housing and should not make any arrangements until they receive an official notice from the RSC.

If a student has previously committed to filling a bed in a housing unit, i.e. interest or social house, they are no longer eligible for off campus living for the same term.  Students who commit to living off campus may not participate in any other housing process related to the same term. Should a student commit to living off campus and then withdraw after the response deadline they may not participate in any other Fall Term housing process and will be housed during the Summer Housing process.

Applicants must be free from official college discipline.

Off Campus Living Expectations

Students who are approved to live off campus as of Fall Term should expect that a year long rental agreement will be their responsibility for the entire length of the agreement, as there is no guarantee of finding a sub-tenant.  Whenever possible, students should try to negotiate a lease only for the length of their own need.

Students are approved for an academic year and must notify the Residential Systems Coordinator (RSC) by the posted deadline if they wish to return to on-campus housing for the following Spring or Fall Term. Failure to meet the deadline will block the student from participating in other housing processes.

Students who plan to continue living off campus for the following academic year do not need to participate in the lottery and will automatically have their off campus living record extended.  However housing fee reductions will not be applied to a student's bill until all required paperwork is submitted, see below.

Special Students are required to live off campus and do not participate in the Off Campus Housing lottery. Special Students should not be included on an application; however, students who have not yet received final approval from the Administration Committee for Special Student status and would still like to live off campus should participate in the off campus process in case they are not approved. Please contact the Registrar's office about Special Student status.

All students approved to live off campus are required to provide:

  • a completed Commitment form,
  • an Off-Campus Contract,
  • landlord contact information,
  • local off campus housing location and phone number.

They are also obligated to update landlord, address and phone details as needed. This is as much for security concerns, as it is to maintain lines of communication between students and the College. Students who fail to do so may be required to move back into housing on campus.

Fee Reductions

Housing Fee Reductions

Full-time, Off Campus students receive a housing fee reduction which is applied automatically when a student is approved to live off campus and all forms have been completed.  Fee reduction rates are newly established each year.  The reduction is applied directly to a student's college bill.  Questions regarding fee reductions should be directed to the Student Financial Services office, 802-443-5158.

Dining Fee Reduction

Students who live off campus may receive a dining fee redutction or have the option of eating in the dining halls.  Information about the application process and form are available through Dining Services.  802.443.5244. Inquiries about meal plan fee reductions should be submitted directly to the Dining Director, Dan Detora.