Frequently Asked Questions

Should I live on campus or off campus?

There are many options to consider when determining where to live. We advise that students take time to consider all of their options, become informed about the housing search process and understand the terms of leasing. Many students will first have to decide whether they would prefer to live on campus or off campus. Some of the reasons a student may choose to live in on-campus residence halls are their convenience to campus, enhanced safety features, professional and paraprofessional staff nearby, and social programs. Students choosing to live off campus generally cite the desire for additional responsibilities, inclusion in the local community and an apartment selected by the student. For information on University-operated housing, please contact University Residences at 765-494-1000 or visit their website at

Do I need renters insurance?

Most landlords have insurance that covers the property but does not include tenant belongings. Renters insurance is a way to protect yourself in the event of theft, fire or other scenarios that cause damage to your belongings. Some leases also indicate that renters insurance is required. Tenants insurance is relatively inexpensive and can usually be purchased through home or car insurance companies.

I won't have a car; how will I get around town?

Purdue University is in partnership with Greater Lafayette Public Transportation, which established a busing system that encompasses the campus and areas within both West Lafayette and Lafayette. Purdue students, faculty and staff ride free of charge when they present a valid Purdue University ID card. Bus schedules and routes can be obtained by calling ride info at 765-742-7433. For bus schedules visit

What should I do when moving into my apartment?

It is important to document the condition of the apartment at both move-in and move-out. Use an apartment condition checklist to document any maintenance or repair issues found in the apartment. In addition, take photographs and/or video of the apartment upon move-in and move-out to show the apartment is being returned to the landlord in similar condition to the way it was received. Documenting the property is one of the best ways to receive your security deposit back after moving out.

Will I have trouble finding an apartment if I have a pet?

Having a pet may somewhat limit your housing options. There are still a number of places in the West Lafayette/Lafayette area that do accept some pets. In some cases, size and breed restrictions may be in place for dogs. If you plan to have a pet living with you, it is best to start the housing search process early.

For more information about off-campus housing, stop by our office in Schleman Hall, Room 217, call 765-496-1841 or email us at

I'm an international student without a social security number, what will I need to rent an apartment?

Landlords may request a copy of your I-20 for in lieu of a social security number. They may also ask for a copy of your Purdue acceptance letter.

How will the process vary if I am an international student?

The biggest difference in searching as an international student will be that you may not get to see the apartment prior to signing a lease. If you have friends or family local to Purdue, we encourage you to ask them to view the apartment and take pictures and photographs prior to signing a lease. If you must sign for an apartment sight-unseen, we highly recommend you review as many landlord ratings and reviews as possible. Please feel free to contact Off-Campus Student Services if you have questions before the lease signing.



Purdue University, Office of the Dean of Students, Helen B. Schleman Hall (formerly the Recitation Building), 2nd Floor, 656 Oval Drive, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2086, Phone (765) 494-1747, Fax (765) 496-1550

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