Preparing to Move Off-Campus

As you embark on the search for housing in the Seattle area, it is important to understand what you will need in your environment for you to be successful in your plans to live and work in Seattle. 

What Are Your Needs? 

Here are some questions that can assist in your off-campus housing search:

  • What type of housing are you interested in? What type of housing can you afford? What floor plan option are you looking for?   
  • What location best fits your needs? Close to school, work or both? 
  • Do you need a full kitchen?  Do you want your own bathroom? 
  • Do you want a washer and dryer in the unit? 
  • Access to Parking/Public Transportation? (securing it & costs)
  • Do you have a pet or want a pet in the future?
  • How many roommates (if any) do you want/need? 

What is Your Budget?

Before you start a serious search for places to live, it’s smart to figure out how much rent you can really afford. Setting a realistic rental budget now can save you disappointment later by preventing you from falling for the “perfect” place that costs more than you should spend.  

Roommate Selection Evaluation Process 

One of the first steps to finding a roommate that is right for you is to determine your own style of living and compare it to the style of living of your potential roommate. Have an open conversation with your potential roommate to get to know each other better and share lifestyle preferences.  

Consider Your Social Habits
Consider Your Living Habits
Consider Groceries
How will you handle Finances?
What does cleanliness mean to you?
Think About Personal Belongings

Application Readiness

Have your personal information ready for an application such as: 

  • Current and previous addresses 
  • Names and birth dates of all occupants
  • Employment and income information and verification
  • Vehicle information
  • References, both personal and housing related 
  • Pet information 

Landlords must make clear in advance the criteria they use to screen your application and what reasons might result in denying you the rental unit. You are entitled to a copy of the screening report. 

Landlords can only charge you the actual cost of screening your application. The customary cost in Seattle ranges from $25-$45 per adult. See more in Move-in Costs. 

Tip: Sometimes landlords accept a reusable screening report generated by an established consumer reporting agency. 

Student Reading at Coffee Shop