Off Campus Housing Process

Students should not sign a lease for an off-campus rental unit unless they have received an Exemption from the Residency Requirement from the Department of Residential Life & Housing.   

Students often report that they feel pressure to sign a lease before they have received an Exemption from the Residency Requirement. The Department of Residential Life and Housing of St. John's University advises students not to sign leases until the student has officially received an Exemption from the Residency Requirement. Students are advised numerous times throughout the Off Campus Release Process that they should not sign a lease without receiving an Exemption from the Residency Requirement. If a student signs a lease for an off campus rental unit but is not granted an Exemption from the Residency Requirement, the student will still be required to participate in room selection for the subsequent year and will be required to live on-campus. The Department of Residential Life and Housnig advises parents to coach their students to only sign a lease after receiving an Exemption from the Residency Requirement.

Residency Requirement Exemption Criteria

The Residency Requirement Exemption Committee will determine, based on specific criteria, which students may be granted an Exemption from the Residency Requirement. There are many factors that go into the committee deciding whether or not to allow a student to be released from this requirement. These factors may include, but are not limited to:

    •  - Class standing
    •  - Students doing internships, clinical or student teaching a reasonable distance from Saint John's
    •  - Students whose family home is within a 20 mile driving radius and are planning to live at home with their guardians
    •  - Age (students over the age of 23 are more likely to be allowed to live off campus)
    •  - Students who are married or are custodial parents
    •  - Military service veteran status

There are some immediate criteria for denial of requests for off campus release. These criteria include, but are not limited to:

  •  - Currently on academic probation
  •  - Currently on student conduct probation
  •  - Cumulative GPA lower than 2.5
  •  - A student within their first year at St. John's University

I am presently living off-campus, do I have to reapply to receive an Exemption from the Residency Requirement for the next year?

Yes, living off-campus is a privilege that all students must reapply for each year. Students must continue to meet the criteria for eligilbity. Also note that living off-campus one year does not give you any advantage in the release process.

Current juniors: You have to reapply, but you will have advantage as part of the senior cohort, though no preference over others in the senior cohort.

Students living at home with parents: You have to reapply so that we know of your continued desire to live at home with your parents. If you do not wish to continue to live at home, you must apply for exemption from the residency requirement as any other student.

Non-traditional students (usually 23 years of age or older): You have to reapply so that we know of your continued desire to remain living off-campus.

I am a transfer student, am I eligible to apply for an Exemption from the Residency Requirement?

Yes, if you transfer with one or more years of experience at another institution of higher education, you are eligible to apply during the fall semester for off-campus release the following academic year. Each individual request will be reviewed to determine which cohort, rising junior or rising senior, you would fit into.

I am a first-year student with college credits from high school, am I eligible to apply for an Exemption to the Residency Requirement?

No, the Residency Requirement Exemption Process is based on your number of years as a full-time student in college after graduating high school. Post secondary credits have no bearing in this exemption process, but may positively impact your class registration.

I am not satisfied with the rationale and/or decision of the residency requirement exemption committee, can I appeal?

Yes, you have 5 business days from the date of your denial notification to appeal with the online form.

Release Process

Is there preference in the release process for seniors?

Yes, during the Residency Requirement Exemption process, we will exhaust the pool of eligible Senior Only groups/students before moving onto mixed junior and senior groups.

What happens if we have a group consisting of both juniors and seniors?

After we have exhausted the list of senior only groups/senior students, we will then make offers to senior majority groups. Majority is defined as 51% of the group (i.e. a group of 6 requires 4 seniors to be considered senior majority). After the senior majority group list has been exhausted, we will offer Junior individuals and Junior groups off campus housing. Juniors should not expect to be granted an off-campus release.

Can I go through the release process as an individual instead of as a group?

Yes, you can go through the release process without joining a group. However, if you are offered an Exmpetion from the Residency Requirement to live off-campus, you will not be allowed to bring others with you.

How does SJU Residential Life and Housing determine the number of Exemptions to be issued? 

The number of people released is a projection of the difference between our anticipated enrollment as compared to the number of bedspaces we have on campus. This number chagnes from year-to-year because retention rates and classes sizes vary from one year to the next.

If I am have not been granted an Exemption to the Residency Requirement, how does the waiting list work?

If placed on the waiting list, we release the next individual/group when the number of students who have accepted their Exemptions has dropped below the projected number of exemptions to be issued.

For additional information regarding the Off Campus Housing process please visit: Off Campus Release Process.

Early September
·     Parents are notified via Saints News and the parent website
·     Residency Requirement Exemption Process Applications goes live on the  student's Housing Portal Page
·     Announcement on the front page of the Residential Life website
Mid-Sept - Oct 14 - Invitations and reminders will be emailed to rising Juniors and rising Seniors
October 15 - Deadline to submit a Residency Requirement Exemption Process Applciation. No late applications will be accepted.
October 25 - Denial notices will be sent to those students who do not qualify for off campus release due to either academics or previous conduct issues.
October 31 - Last date for previously denied students to submit a Residency Requirement Exemption appeal to live off-campus for the 2020-2021 academic year.
November 19 - Residential Life and representatvies from the SJU Student Senate will assign groups/students to a release list/waitlist in order determined by a ransom selection process for all confirmed and validated roommate groups and individual Exemption Process Applicants. Students will be assigned a spot on the release list/waitlist. The release list/waitlist is the order in which Exemption Offers are made.
November 21 - Offers will be sent to the first wave of students.
December 8 - Acceptance/Decline of Exemption Offers are due. Student who do not respond to the Exemption Offer as instructed by the December 8 deadline will have the Exemption Offer revoked/withdrawn and the next student on the waitlist will be presented with an Exemption Offer.