Housing Processes | Salem State University Skip to main content

Housing Costs

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Housing Costs

Information about the costs of living on campus, including meal plans can be found on the Student Accounts page. 

The Residence Life License Agreement

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The Residence Life License Agreement

The Residence Life License Agreement

Students are required to read and sign the residence life license agreement as a condition for living on campus. The agreement, which is a binding contract in effect the entire year, contains important information regarding residential students’ rights and responsibilities. Students should review it carefully before signing. Students who leave campus housing mid-year are not entitled to a refund, for instance, and will be charged for both fall and spring semester housing.

Length of Housing

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Length of Housing

Resident students are guaranteed a room on campus for three years, as long as they complete the process for housing deposits and room selection correctly. Students who leave campus housing at any point during the two years (for a leave of absence, a withdrawal from school, and so on), forfeit the housing guarantee upon their return. Students wishing to have campus housing when they return are encouraged to communicate with Residence Life. Residents receiving housing through the lottery process are allowed to live on campus a maximum of 10 (ten) semesters.

NOTE: Students who are studying abroad may participate in the housing process, and in the housing lottery.

12-Credit Waiver

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12-Credit Waivers

Resident students are required to maintain full-time student status (12 credits or more) at the university while living on campus. Resident students are permitted to apply for one 12-credit waiver during their stay in the residence halls. This waiver allows students to drop below 12 credits for one semester and still retain campus housing. Students who petition to drop below six credits may not be approved to remain in campus housing. Waiver forms are available from your resident director, and must be signed by your resident director and either the director or associate director of residence life.

Room Change Information

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Room Change Information

During the first two weeks of school, Residence Life imposes a room freeze. During this time, no room changes will be processed. After two weeks, students wishing a room change should contact their resident assistant and resident director to discuss their situations. Room changes are granted on a space-available basis and with the participation and agreement of all students involved. If cleared to move, students must check out of their current space, return their keys and move into their new room within 48 hours. Failure to return keys in a timely manner may result in a lock change at students’ expense. Students moving are responsible for notifying Chartwells of any change in meal plan.

Students who change rooms without the permission of of he resident director, and without completing all required paperwork, are in violation of the residence life license agreement and will be directed to return to their original, assigned room immediately. Unapproved room changes may result in student conduct action, and the student’s license agreement may be canceled, resulting in immediate loss of housing without a refund.

Extended Housing Consolidation and Room Refunds

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Extended Housing Consolidation and Room Refunds info

Any student withdrawing from Salem State during the academic year is entitled to a pro-rated refund on room fees already paid upon submission of a completed request for cancellation form. This must be submitted to residence life prior to the date of withdrawal and must be approved.

Student belongings left behind in a room or building will be discarded after residence life has made a reasonable effort to contact the student. Residence life does not store student belongings.

The Extended Housing Consolidation Process

By the end of the first week of each semester, the resident director sends each student living in extended housing a letter informing them of the extended consolidation process, and an invitation to attend an extended housing consolidation informational meeting. The resident director also sends a letter to students with an available space in their room. This letter informs them that their room must be prepared to receive a new roommate, and ensures that:

A. Students are prepared for a new roommate

B. Students have been properly notified that a room change may occur

By the end of the semester’s second week, the resident director will hold an informational meeting for all students in extended housing to explain the priority of extended consolidation, outline the process and answer any questions. Depending on space availability, students will be first offered the opportunity to move within their preferred living environment (example: students living on a co-ed floor will first be offered the opportunity to move within a co-ed floor environment). If space is not available, students will be offered a space within another living environment (example: students living on a co-ed floor will be offered an available space located on a single-sex floor). 

A room breakdown and refund letter will be provided to residents of each room being administratively broken down and must be signed by each resident. A copy is kept on file. The letter will indicate that the available space is being offered as an administrative option for relocation. The room’s residents have 48 hours to decide who from the over-capacity room will move into the offered space. If no one from the room accepts the offer of a room change within the 48 hours, residents forfeit the move and the 20-percent refund. Their room also moves to the bottom of the priority list for extended consolidation.

In “double as triple” (DAT) rooms, the extra desk and chair will be removed, but the bed and dresser remain for the entire year.

The Philosophy of Extended Housing Consolidation

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The Philosophy of Extended Housing Consolidation Info

Most rooms house several students. In all six residential areas, students may live in double, triple, or quad rooms; the majority of new residents are placed in triples or quad rooms (known as extended housing). The residence life license agreement allows the university to place an additional occupant in doubles or triples on a temporary basis, so long as such an increase conforms to prevailing occupancy and health requirements.

  • Per the Massachusetts State College Building Authority (MSCBA), if the university increases the normal occupancy of a room for 30 days, the university will refund each student residing in the room 20 percent of their room payment
  • If, within the 30-day period, the university is able to offer students in the room an opportunity to fill vacancies elsewhere, it is no longer obligated to provide a refund to the students, whether or not the student chooses to move.
  • Residence life will make every attempt to offer students the opportunity to move within their preferred environment (all-female floor, all-male floor or co-ed floor) or residence hall; space may be limited due to occupancy
  • Residents who choose to remain in extended housing receive no reduction in room rental if residence life staff offered them space elsewhere
  • Quad rooms are considered normal occupancy once three people remain in the room
  • Triple rooms are considered normal occupancy once two people remain

NOTE: Failure to check your Salem State University email, or the front desk message board on a regular basis is not an acceptable reason for not returning messages regarding the breakdown of your triple or quad room.

If, after attempts to contact you regarding your space, your resident director does not hear back from you, s/he will go to the next person on the list and you will forfeit your right to the 20 percent refund.

The Wait List

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Wait List

Residence Life keeps a housing wait list each semester. Those wishing to be put on the waiting list must first pay a $300 housing deposit to student accounts. Deposits may be made directly through your navigator account. The wait list for spring semester housing begins October 1 of the previous semester.The wait list for the fall semester begins April 1 of the previous semester. Students may roll their $300 over to a new list, or request a refund (provided they have no outstanding balance on their university account).

Your Rights to Your Space

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Your Rights to Your Space

The university does not normally use your room or apartment during the academic year. During vacation periods, however, when residence halls are closed, the university reserves the right to use your space for any reason it considers appropriate. Therefore, please remove any valuables, and follow all closing procedures before you leave for a break. Residence life will make every effort to notify you in advance of anything that would require use of your space. Bear in mind, however, that emergency situations sometimes arise, and notification may not be possible. If the department has an emergency need, the university reserves the right to consolidate students temporarily.

Room Vacancies

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Room Vacancies

Residents with a room vacancy are expected to keep half of the room open and available for another resident to move in. Residence life will make every effort to provide residents with advance notice of a new roommate. There may, however, be times when it is necessary to move someone into the space immediately. It is expected that drawers, closets and the bed will be empty, and readily available to a new roommate.

Residents Leaving Housing

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Residents Leaving Housing

Residents who decide to leave the residential areas must follow the proper steps to check out. The license agreement is a contract for one academic year, and may not be terminated by a student without the written consent of the director of residence life. The director will only consider requests for release in cases of economic hardship as determined by residence life and financial aid.

To request termination of residential housing:

  • Submit a completed request for cancellation form to residence life
  • If approved, contact the navigation center to check the status of your clipper card food service account

No room refunds will be made to students leaving residence halls without first being released from the license agreement. Space will be held for students who choose to leave, and who turn in their keys, but that space may be in another room of a similar type. Upon notification from individual students, those graduating in December and those not registered for spring semester classes will be released from the spring semester portion of the agreement.

Students withdrawing from the university, taking a leave of absence, studying abroad, student teaching at a distance from the university, and academically or administratively dismissed, will be allowed to cancel their agreement, but must follow the appropriate process. There is no guarantee of space on re-admit for students dismissed for academic or administrative reasons.

Students dismissed from a residence hall for disciplinary reasons are not eligible for a refund. Students who leave campus housing for any reason are not guaranteed housing when they return, and must go through the wait list process. The only exception is for students studying abroad on university-sponsored programs, who may participate in the housing selection process for the upcoming year if their housing deposits are paid by the specified deadline. These students will be entered into the housing lottery and may select a room through our MyHousing online system.

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