Tips for Finding Summer Housing

As the summer search gets into gear, housing is on a lot of students’ minds. Some students find jobs or internships near their homes, but for others, it can be tricky trying to find a place to stay that’s within a student budget. Sites like Craigslist and are obvious places to turn to—but there are other options as well! Some quick tips for the housing search:

  • Ask on-campus internship funders. Centers like the CPGC, the Hurford Center and the KINSC award large numbers of internships every year. Ask the staff at each of these if they’re aware of other students looking for housing in your location this summer, who might be willing to share tips or even a room.  If there isn’t anyone staying where you’re staying, they still might be able to connect you with interns from past years who could share their experiences, or they might themselves be aware of location-specific resources.
  • Ask your host organization. Organizations that regularly host interns probably have some perspective on where their interns usually stay, and might be able to offer helpful hints about the housing search that you could only get from locals. The host organization may also be able to connect you with other summer interns who are also looking for housing; someone from the organization may even be interested in renting out a room themselves.
  • Check with nearby colleges and universities. Many will rent out dorm rooms over the summer—for instance, the centrally located Art Institute of Chicago offers double rooms at $285 per week, while NYU offers dorm rooms in New York City for as low as $180 per week. NYU, and many other schools that hold summer sessions, also offer meal plans for summer renters—often more expensive than eating on your own, but sometimes worth considering for the convenience.
  • Ask friends & family—and ask them to ask their friends & family. Even if you don’t know anyone who lives in your summer destination, someone you know might—and they might have a room they could rent you, or know of someone who does.  This is less risky than renting from a stranger, and you might find cheaper or more comfortable accommodations than you would have otherwise.
  • Check out airbnb. This website features accommodations rented out by private owners, ranging from penthouse suites to entire houses to couches. It’s meant for short-term stays, but if you contact the renters directly you might be able to negotiate a hefty discount for a longer-term rental. (After all, it’s unlikely they have anything close to full occupancy.) Plus, you can see the reviews from past (short-term) renters, and listings typically feature multiple photos of the available space.