Find a place to live

Where you live will shape your UBC experience – from who you meet to what you eat. If you’re looking for a supportive community that’s close to classes and campus activities, residence is the place to be. If you have an independent streak and a desire to explore, then off-campus housing might be for you.

How to secure a spot in residence

Submit your residence application to UBC Student Housing as soon as you receive your offer of admission to UBC (but no later than May 1). Your place in residence is only guaranteed if:

  • you are a first-year student who is graduating from high school in the current academic year,
  • you submit your residence application for Winter Session housing by the May 1 deadline, and
  • you accept UBC’s offer of admission by the date indicated in your letter of admission (but no later than June 1).


For important details about priority access, residence guarantees, and early arrival, please visit UBC Student Housing.

Wherever you end up living, your U-Pass connects your campus to your city.

Okanagan campus

Learn more about the U-Pass program

Vancouver campus

Learn more about the U-Pass program

Receiving your residence offer

Your residence offer is different from your offer of admission to UBC. Residence offers are sent by email between June and August, so keep an eye on your inbox. You will have a limited time – usually just one week – to accept and pay the deposit. Residence room assignments are sent by email in mid-August.

How to find off-campus housing

If you have time to walk around local neighbourhoods, there are often vacancy signs posted on rental properties and houses close to campus. Otherwise, browse online resources, including UBC Student Housing, or check notice boards in the University Centre (Okanagan campus) or the AMS Nest and International House (Vancouver campus).

Where to go as a commuter student

If you live off campus and commute to class, check out UBC’s Collegia. These safe and welcoming on-campus spaces are great spots to relax between classes, heat up your lunch, connect with other students, and find a sense of community.

“If you live in residence, you have to vacate your room at the end of each academic year. Keep your belongings as compact as possible for smooth moving.”

An, Chemistry and Mathematics student at UBC Okanagan

What it's like to live in residence

Okanagan campus

As a first-year student, you will live in a single room, single connected room, or four-bedroom apartment, some of which have kitchen facilities or additional furnishings. Your UBCcard can be used at any food service location on campus: for coffee and snacks at well-known favourites like Starbucks, Subway, and Tim Hortons, as well as for fresh salads, sushi, and stone-baked pizza at EMEats, Green Thread Market, and the Sunshine Café. You can also use your UBCcard at select off-campus vendors, including Momo Sushi and Okanagan Pizza.

Vancouver campus

As a first-year student, you will live in a shared room, single room, or single connected room in Totem Park, Place Vanier, or Orchard Commons. With your residence meal plan, you can eat in any of the three dining rooms on campus and use your flex dollars to eat when and where you want around campus. Your UBCcard acts as your meal plan card. The University’s dining rooms proudly serve fair-trade coffee, fresh fruit and vegetables from the UBC Farm, and free-range meat and eggs. Around campus you’ll find an additional 40 food vendors and a growing number of food trucks, offering sushi, falafel, pub food, pizza, and much more.

“My residence room must-haves are a comfy pillow, snacks, and an alarm clock.”

Thao, Commerce student at UBC Vancouver

UBC admissions blog

UBC Collegia: A home away from home on campus

Whether you’re facing a long commute or a taking a quick bus ride to UBC, feeling like part of the university community can be challenging if you don’t have a home base on campus. UBC Collegia are spaces where commuter students can fully experience life at UBC.

Read more

Next: Explore your academic options