Deciding where to live as an undergraduate or Postbac Premed student is an important decision, one to which serious consideration should be given. New York's many and diverse neighborhoods combined with an extensive public transportation system offer a variety of housing options that are convenient to the Columbia campus.

Students reside in many different housing situations. A number of students stay in University-owned housing, many live at home, and some secure other non-University housing in the New York area. 

Columbia Housing

Undergraduate and Postbac Premed students may apply to be housed in facilities operated by Columbia Residential, and those who qualify are usually accommodated in apartments or dormitory-style suites shared by other Columbia students; typically each student has his or her own bedroom while sharing kitchen and bath facilities.

Housing Availability & Eligibility

Undergraduate and Postbac Premed students are not guaranteed University Housing. The School is allotted a limited number of spaces by Columbia Residential each semester for new assignments. Student demand for housing regularly exceeds the allotment, and both new and continuing students may apply for University Housing.

University Housing is available to students, couples, and students with dependent children on a limited basis and priority is given to those students moving from further distances. Students who live within 50 miles of campus will most likely be placed on the waiting list.

Only students who are enrolled full time at GS (12 or more points per semester) may apply for University Housing. Postbac Premed students enrolled for less than 12 points are also eligible for University Housing if they are registered for at least 9 points and are simultaneously fulfilling their clinical volunteer work requirement of at least 3 hours per week and 42 hours per semester.

Housing Application Timeline

*Housing assignments are made on a rolling basis as space becomes available. Students who do not receive a housing assignment will automatically be placed on a waitlist.

Contact Us

If you have any questions concerning University Housing, email [email protected].

Additional Housing Information

Only students currently not in Columbia Residential need to apply and are encouraged to do so early. Housing assignments are made on a rolling basis as space becomes available.

*Note: Only students who have accepted their offer of admission, paid their deposit, and activated their UNI will be able to access the Housing Portal and apply for housing.

To apply, please follow these steps:

  1. Accept your offer of admission and submit your deposit
  2. Activate your UNI.
  3. Review the Types of Accommodations section of the Columbia Residential website, and review and sign the Guidelines for Sharing Columbia Residential Housing form.
  4. Sign-up for a My Housing Portal account.
  5. Complete the Columbia Residential application.

Log-in Information

Students will also need their CUID/PID in order to complete the application; the CUID/PID number begins with C00 and is available at the top of any page in SSOL.

To locate their PID, students may need to select “Show My Personal Name and Data” from the drop-down menu in the “Viewing Options” box and then click “Update View.”

The Wait List Housing Process operates after regular fall and spring housing assignments are made. Students who do not receive a housing assignment will automatically be placed on the waitlist.

Students with active housing applications may look for housing any time during the waitlist period. Information about the housing selection appointment will be sent to the Columbia email address once the application is reviewed and confirmed for the waitlist. During the waitlist period, students may enter housing selection to review availability as many times as they want, until a selection is confirmed or the waitlist period ends. Housing through the waitlist is subject to availability and is not guaranteed.

Offers from the student housing waitlist are for that academic year only (until May 31, in most cases, unless the student’s affiliation ends sooner). Extensions beyond that term are not guaranteed and must be reviewed and approved by GS through the Affiliation Review process.

Note: While it is possible to receive an offer for housing as part of the waitlist process, University Housing is not guaranteed and it is important for students to investigate options on the open market while managing the waitlist process.

Residents in Columbia Residential who wish to move to a different room or apartment may apply for a transfer in the Housing Portal. Students may apply for a General Transfer, Direct Transfer, or Group Transfer. For more information on transferring, visit Columbia Residential.

OCHA provides advice on finding rentals in non-Columbia owned buildings and maintains a website and online database of available rooms, apartments, and apartment shares in the greater metropolitan area. This service is open to all Columbia students, full- and part-time.

Office Location
419 West 119th Street
(212) 854-2773

Additional Resources

  • Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA): Maps, timetables, and service announcements for New York City Transit (buses and subways), MetroNorth, the Long Island Railroad (LIRR) and NY bridges and tunnels
  • New Jersey Transit (NYT): Maps, timetables, and service announcements for NJT Rail Service, NJT Bus Service and PATH service
  • NYC Straphangers Campaign: Advocacy group for MTA riders
  • iTrans NYC: Live train info, MTA service alerts, MTA maps, subway and bus directions, and schedules
  • PATH: Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH) is a rapid transit system in the northeastern New Jersey cities of Newark, Harrison, Jersey City, and Hoboken, and Lower and Midtown Manhattan in New York City.