2020-21 Academic Year Changes to Undergraduate Housing Guarantees

Due to the circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, on-campus housing operations and housing guarantees will change for the 2020-21 academic year. Undergraduate Housing will be offered as space allows, but cannot be guaranteed. Students will be housed in single-occupancy rooms to promote physical distance. Students interested in on-campus housing are still encouraged to apply.  Information and advisories are still forthcoming, and as we learn more, updates will be posted on this page and elsewhere on the Housing Website. 

Learn about COVID-related Housing Policies in...

     Undergraduate Housing

     Graduate and Family Housing

FAQ - Undergraduate Housing

I want to terminate my 2020-2021 contract. What do I do?

Complete the online Termination form on Housing Gateway (under Other Tasks). More information can be found on the Contract Cancellation page. No cancellation fee will be charged and the reservation fee will be applied to the housing charges (if applicable).

Contract terminations after move-in are subject to administrative review and approval.

What is Housing doing to protect the health of residents?

Housing is taking a variety of measures to protect the health of residents:

Physical Environment

  • Limiting room occupancy to one student.
  • Reducing and spacing furniture and limiting allowable occupancy in common areas to promote physical distancing.
  • Installing paper towel, anti-bacterial soap, and toilet seat cover dispensers in the bathrooms.
  • Recommending use of group bathrooms to one resident at a time when possible.
  • Surfaces such as tables, counters, and appliances in common areas, laundry rooms, door knobs/handles, light switches, bathrooms, elevator buttons, and stairwell railings are disinfected daily.

Know How to Protect Yourself and Others in the Age of COVID!

  • We are focused on maintaining living environments that support health, but your behaviors are equally important to reducing the risk of exposure.
  • Wearing face coverings in public areas (especially indoors), hand-washing, and observing physical distancing are important ways to protect yourself and others.
  • Housing will have quarantine spaces available for students who are being tested for the virus and isolation spaces for anyone who has tested positive.

Our Student and Professional Staff are Here for You!

  • RAs (Resident Advisors) are upper-division students living in/on each hall/floor to provide support, information, and guidance on navigating campus resources. In addition to bringing their experience as UCI students, Resident Advisors receive extensive training in mentoring to help you make the most of your life as a college student. RA’s are on duty each weeknight from 5pm-8am the next morning and all day Saturday and Sunday (as well as university holidays).
  • Programs (virtual and face-to-face—within guidelines and physically distanced for health protection) will be offered to support your academic advancement and engagement in the community as well as on campus. We strive to provide opportunities to build concrete skills that will equip you for success at UCI and beyond. Program topics include: time management, health and wellness, financial literacy, and community bonding.
  • Community desks are open for service (including mail and package pickup), support, professional staff access, and getting answers to questions.
  • Our professional staff include custodial, maintenance, grounds, and residence life and are easily accessible, either in-person or via phone/zoom/email.

The Residential Meal Plan – for students living in the residence halls

  • Offers the security and convenience of easy access to balanced nutrition without having to grocery shop or prepare meals.
  • Three meal plan options are available—7 Day, 5 Weekday, and 100 Meals per quarter.
  • Meal service will provide “take-away” options for fall quarter.

Is Housing still available for spring quarter?

Students who would like to live on campus for spring quarters should submit a Housing applications and send an email to housing@uci.edu 

Can I apply for on-campus housing for next year, 2021-22?

The 2021-22 Continuing Student Housing Application is open and can be found on the Housing Gateway. ACC Communities have also opened their 2021-22 applications. 

Is there a housing waitlist I can apply to?

Since undergraduate housing guarantees have been suspended, all housing applications are placed on a waitlist. We will serve as many students as we are able to given the spaces available. Apply via the Housing Gateway.

How can I find housing off-campus?

The Anteater Housing Network provides local housing listings for apartments, rooms in homes, and “roommate wanted” messages, and is a good place to start your search. There are a number of other online listing websites that feature housing in Irvine and surrounding cities.

Will classes be online for the rest of the school year? 

Undergraduate classes will remain online for spring quarter.  Where possible, some in-person learning options may be offered. Check your UCI email frequently for ongoing updates from the Division of Undergraduate Education.

Still have questions……

Email your question to HousingCovidQuestion@uci.edu

FAQ - Graduate and Family Housing

Housing Lease and Assignments:

I am an incoming student starting in fall 2020, can I start my studies online and keep my housing guarantee?

All incoming students can defer their arrival to campus and their housing placement for any reason. Students who have a housing guarantee are eligible for a priority placement in front of other waitlisted students when you decide to come to campus. Please be aware, we believe the priority waitlist will be extensive due to the number of students we anticipate deferring their arrival. It is very possible or even likely that the timeframe, floorplan, community, or other placement preferences will not be available when you request housing in a subsequent term. As we have space become available Student Housing will do its best to provide a best-fit housing offer. Once placed, the terms of your guarantee will remain intact, which will include your assured renewal through the original terms of your guarantee. Once you determine when you would like to arrive to arrive on campus, you will need to begin the process by creating a new 2020 housing application. If you are planning to return July 1, 2021 or after, a 2021 housing application will need to be created March 1, 2021 or after. To receive a housing offer, residents are expected to meet all eligibility criteria (e.g. be within your length of stay, be in good financial standing, etc.).

I am a continuing student who moved off campus due to COVID, how can I return to campus?

If you canceled your Graduate and Family Housing lease (Campus Village, Palo Verde, or Verano Place) due to COVID and have a current housing guarantee, your housing guarantee will be intact when you return. You are eligible for a priority placement in front of other waitlisted students when you decide to return. Please be aware, we believe the priority waitlist will be extensive due to the number of students we anticipate deferring their arrival. It is very possible or even likely that the timeframe, floorplan, community, or other placement preferences will not be available when you request housing in a subsequent term. As we have space become available Student Housing will do its best to provide a best-fit housing offer. Once placed, the terms of your guarantee will remain intact, which will include your assured renewal through the original terms of your guarantee. To return, you will need to begin the process by creating a new 2020 housing application. If you are planning to return July 1, 2021 or after, a 2021 housing application will need to be created March 1, 2021 or after. To receive a housing offer, residents are expected to meet all eligibility criteria (e.g. be within your length of stay, be in good financial standing, etc.).

Does the change in the undergraduate guarantee policy affect graduate students?

The graduate student housing process will be implemented as it usually is. Graduate students who are guaranteed housing (PHD, JD, MFA, Prime-LC and ABC-LEAD MD students) will still receive an offer if they meet the May 1 (4 p.m., PT) application deadline. (More information here.) If spaces remain available after guaranteed students are served, housing offers will be made to the graduate housing waitlist.

Does the change in the undergraduate guarantee policy affect undergraduate students who are eligible to live in graduate and family housing?

Changes to housing guarantees apply to all undergraduates, regardless of which housing community they are eligible to reside in.

I want to cancel my 2020-2021 lease. What do I do?

Current Residents: Current residents will be permitted to cancel their housing assignment at any time through spring quarter by emailing their housing community and requesting a lease termination. In your email, please include your student ID as well as the apartment number for the assignment you are canceling. Residents will be sent lease termination paperwork to complete and return. Lease termination will be processed upon completion of the paperwork and is finalized once you move out and return keys.

New/Incoming Residents: Incoming students who started the housing process but later decide not to live on campus should email the housing community in which they were placed (contacts below in last Q&A). Students may cancel any time before their lease start date.

How do I apply for the Graduate and Family Housing waitlist?

Students can apply to the housing waitlist for the current year at any time. The waitlist for 2021-22 is open as of March 1, 2021. Waitlist offers are limited in number and based upon our occupancy. You may update your floor plan (up to 20) and other preferences at any time and resubmit your application without losing your place on the waitlist.

I am a single student, and I am not comfortable living with a roommate. Can I have an apartment to myself?

Student Housing is committed to supporting the need for on-campus graduate housing by having as many students on campus as possible. We are working diligently to make housing offers and accommodate incoming students’ individual needs. In order to fulfill the commitment to all graduate students who have a housing guarantee, Housing must maximize the use of all available spaces. We do not have enough one-bedroom apartments to accommodate all graduate students in individual apartments. Student Housing is working closely with campus health, academic and administrative officials, who regularly review current policies and safety regulations. Based on their current guidance, we are moving forward with a plan to house single students in a shared apartment. While students will share the kitchen and bathroom, all graduate students are assigned individual bedrooms.

Does UCI provide testing for residents living on campus?

To maintain a healthy Anteater environment and help control the spread of coronavirus within the community, UCI has established active, ongoing testing for students, faculty and staff on campus. Asymptomatic testing is required for all on-campus students who do not have symptoms. If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, students should contact Student Health. All on-campus students are expected to participate in weekly asymptomatic testing and to test within 48 hours of moving-in or traveling during a school break.

COVID-19 testing is currently completed via a supervised self-administered nasal swab test, is cost-free to students living on campus, and results are available within 24 - 72 hours.

For information on testing requirements, the testing process, or on campus, how to schedule a reoccurring appointment visit the UCI testing website.

I am in a high-risk group, and feel I should not live with a roommate due to health reasons. What are my options?

Disability Services Center will determine any and all accommodations and will provide written verification to Student Housing. If you or someone in your household has a disability-related need that may require an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act and/or may affect your housing placement, visit the Disability Services Center website www.disability.uci.edu to learn about services and the process for requesting assistance and/or accommodation.

I am an International Student and my lease start date is prior to the date I enter the United States. What should I do?

Respond to your housing offer by email with the subject line of “Travel Information”. Explain the conflict. Once we have more information, we will be able to best advise you on the next steps. You will not be required to accept any lease prior to the date your visa allows you to enter the United States.


What should I plan to bring to campus?

  • A supply of face coverings for use in public and social environments
  • Cleaning supplies for disinfecting your living environment
  • A thermometer for monitoring your temperature when advised
  • A self-isolation “go-bag” containing toiletries, a few changes of clothes, and other essentials – so you can quickly transition to isolation/quarantine should the need arise
  • An outdoor/folding chair to enjoy nature, while still practicing physical distancing

How should I prepare for move-in?

  • Identify who, if anyone, will be helping you move into your new unit. In order to support the campus’s efforts to reduce exposure to the virus, only two helpers will be permitted on move-in day.
  • You, your dependents, and any helpers will need to self-isolate for 10-14 days prior to your arrival, which is a requirement of all incoming students. While you may not be able to stay at home 24/7, limit your social interactions and attendance at public gatherings.
  • Commit to following the top three requirements for avoiding exposure to the virus: (1) physical distancing, (2) hand-washing, and (3) wearing a face covering. The campus is working to develop an Anteater Pledge, which will be rolled out to the campus community before the start of fall quarter. All members of the campus community, including students, staff, faculty, and on-campus residents, will be asked to commit to following the expectations in the pledge.
  • Talk to your prospective roommate about how to maintain a living environment that is comfortable for both of you, particularly in the context of the pandemic. Address expectations for cleaning standards, bringing guests into the apartment (when restrictions are lifted), your commitment to following the guidelines for minimizing potential exposure, etc.
  • If you develop symptoms prior to leaving for campus, you will need to delay your arrival until your symptoms have resolved and/or you have confirmed a negative COVID test result.
  • Contact your housing community and schedule an appointment for key-pick up. Due to the need for physical distancing, housing staff can only accommodate one move-in at a time. Following each move-in appointment, the meeting area is sanitized. If you arrive without an appointment, you may need to wait for an extended time. Currently, our housing office is closed to visitors. To support physical distancing, individuals waiting for their move-in meeting will be asked to wait in their car, and we will call you when we are ready to meet with you.

What will move-in look like?

  • Upon arrival to your housing community, you, your dependents, and your helpers will complete a symptom screening before receiving your keys.
  • If you or your dependents are experiencing any symptoms related to COVID, you will be referred to Student Health for further screening and possible testing. In most cases, Student Health will require that you and your dependents quarantine or isolate until you are cleared to move into your new unit. Student Housing has set aside quarantine units for quarantine, or you and your dependents can quarantine off campus if you prefer. However, you will not be able to move your belongings into your new apartment until you are cleared by Student Health. During the time you are in isolation/quarantine, you will be responsible for finding temporary storage of your belongings. The University’s goal is for your move-in experience to be as seamless as possible, and to this end, we again urge you to not arrive on campus until you are symptom-free.
  • If any of your helpers have symptoms on move-in day, they will not be permitted to assist you and will need to either wait in a quarantine area set aside by the University or leave campus.
  • Follow campus guidelines for “self-sequestering” for the first two weeks with a small group of associates such as your program peers, practice physical distancing, and wear a face-covering where advised/required.
  • Stay informed! Find links to UCI, county, state, and federal public health advisories on the UCI Homepage.
  • If you experience symptoms, contact Student Health or your primary care provider for guidance


I am currently a student experiencing financial difficulties related to COVID-19. Can the University help me with rent and other unforeseen expenses related to COVID-19?

Students seeking information about campus resources should go to the UCI Coronavirus website. The site includes Frequently Asked Questions specifically for students as well as the latest messages from the CDC and campus leaders. UCI has also established a Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response Center to provide information and assistance. They can be reached at 949-824-9918 or by emailing covid19@uci.edu. The UCI Fresh Basic Needs Hub is a resource for students during this crisis, and you can find updates on available services on their website.

Graduate Division has also posted information on a Hardship/Emergency Support Fund and a link to an assistance request form at https://www.grad.uci.edu/services/CampusHealthUpdates.php

There are also a number of online external resources available for those impacted by the pandemic:

  • Onward California provides a “One-stop resource for the people of California impacted by job loss during the COVID-19 Pandemic” at https://onwardca.org/.
  • The Labor and Workforce Development Agency for the State of California posts Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) Resources for Employers and Workers at https://www.labor.ca.gov/coronavirus2019/.
  • The California Department of Rehabilitation provides resources for those with disabilities at https://www.dor.ca.gov/.

For information on the federal response to Coronavirus, including information on tax filing and relief from student loan payments, visit https://www.usa.gov/coronavirus.

I cannot pay my rent this month. What should I do?

Students who are experiencing difficulties making their rent payments can contact the Student Housing Account Counselor. Payment deferments and payment plans can be arranged based on individual circumstances.

Health and Wellness:

When I arrive on campus, what preventive public health measures will be in place?

  • Starting in the fall, students will be required to sign and adhere to the Anteater Pledge regarding public health practices such as maintaining physical distance and wearing a face covering.
  • Face coverings are required in community public spaces such as laundry rooms and BBQs as well as on-campus in classrooms, workspaces, and all other common areas, both indoors and outdoors where social distancing is not possible.
  • Appropriate barriers — plexiglass and other similar materials — have been added to high-traffic visiting and work areas.
  • Sanitation and cleaning have been enhanced in all high traveled, high touch surfaces. This includes disinfecting community tables, counters, and appliances, laundry rooms, door knobs/handles, light switches, public restrooms, elevator buttons, and stairwell railings at least twice a day, seven days a week. Additionally, hand sanitizer is available in all public spaces.
  • Student Housing community spaces will be closed or have modified occupancy for the foreseeable future.

What measures can I take to help control the spread of COVID?

The best ways to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus are through frequent hand washing, use of face coverings, physical distancing, self-screening for symptoms, viral testing for those with symptoms, and contact tracing of individuals testing positive. As we return to operations on campus:

  • All members of the campus community are expected to screen themselves for symptoms each day before leaving their apartment or coming to campus.
  • Everyone should take personal responsibility to sanitize and disinfect your private living space regularly. If you request a repair or work in your apartment, you will be asked to clean the area being worked on prior to staff entry. This includes removing personal belongings from the area so staff can disinfect the space before and at the completion of their work. Additionally, if you request work in your apartment, please practice physical distancing and stay six feet away from Student Housing staff. If you need to interact with them, please wear a face covering.
  • Residents are asked to restrict visitors and guests even in personal apartments. Additionally, in accordance with state and local guidelines, group activities of any size such as potlucks or other community gatherings are not permitted on campus at this time. Should this change, we will share the update with our residential community.
  • All community members are expected to wear face coverings while in community buildings and on campus, as well as in outdoor campus spaces where it is not possible to ensure physical distancing, in accordance with orders from the Orange County Health Agency.

What is the daily symptom tracker?

Each day before coming to campus or leaving your on-campus apartment, students, faculty, and staff are expected to check themselves for COVID-19 symptoms. This expectation also applies to dependents and family members living in on-campus housing. Prior to moving in, or participating on campus in any manner, students and residents must be free of ANY symptoms potentially related to COVID-19.

Daily and before move-in students will be asked:

  • Are you, or any member of your household, currently experiencing any of the following symptoms? If you have chronic conditions (e.g. migraines) and are experiencing symptoms identical to your usual symptoms, do not report those here.
    • Fever (99F+)
    • Chills
    • Muscle aches
    • Shortness of breath (new)
    • Unexpected fatigue
    • Sore Throat
    • Loss of taste or smell
    • Headache
    • Diarrhea, vomiting, or nausea
    • Other cold symptoms
  • Have you, or anyone in your household, been tested for COVID-19 using a nasal, oral, or nasopharyngeal swab in the past 14 days?
  • Within the past 14 days has anyone you live with had a positive COVID-19 test using a nasal, oral, or nasopharyngeal swab?
  • Have you, or anyone in your household, been within 6 feet of a COVID-19 infected person for at least 15 minutes within the last 14 days?

Any student or dependent responding yes to any of these questions must have an evaluation and clearance by UCI Student Health to be eligible to move on campus or participate in campus activities.

What should I do if I feel ill or believe I have been exposed to COVID?

Any resident who feels ill or believes they have been exposed and would like medical attention should contact UCI Student Health Center at 949-824-5301 or your personal provider. If you need assistance after the Student Health Center has closed, you have the options below.

After-Hours Nurse Advice Line & Health Care Resource Options:

  • Video-Appointment - All registered UCI students can access LiveHealth Online for resources and to make an online video conference appointment.
  • Anthem Nurse Line - If you have UCSHIP (USHIP for Undergraduate Students, GSHIP for Graduate students) as insurance, you can call the Anthem nurse advice line at 877-351-3457.
  • Other Health Insurance - If you have your own health insurance, you can refer to your insurance carrier to see if they have a similar nurse line.
    • Kaiser Permanente Nurse Advice Line is 1-833-574-2273.

Additional information can be found at https://shc.uci.edu/medical-emergency

Anyone who thinks they may have COVID-19 should should contact their healthcare provider prior to arriving at their medical facility.

Who can I talk to if I have a concern about health and safety?

UCI has established the UCI Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response Center. Students, staff, faculty, parents, and community partners may call 949-824-9918 or email covid19@uci.edu to be connected directly for more information.

If your concern is specifically related to Student Housing and you would like to contact a Student Housing staff member, refer to the numbers below.

What happens if a GFH resident has a suspected or positive case for COVID-19?

Anyone living in on-campus housing who is being tested for COVID due to symptoms or who tests positive will be required to quarantine/isolate until medically cleared by a medical professional. Residents who live in a full apartment (family apartment) will be asked to quarantine/isolate at home in their apartment unless otherwise directed by the University. The University has set aside dedicated isolation and quarantine spaces for students who live in a shared apartment with a roommate. Anyone placed in quarantine/ isolation will be provided with food and essential items.

What support do students get if they are in isolation or quarantine?

UCI is committed to supporting all students during any required isolation and quarantine. This includes contact tracing, academic support, health services, and counseling services. Additionally, all residents in isolation and quarantine in Graduate and Family Housing will receive a regular wellness call from a Housing Professional Staff member to provide support and assistance as needed.

I am anxious and scared about COVID-19. Does UCI have help for that?

We understand that the uncertainties surrounding the coronavirus may be causing stress and worry among students, for a variety of reasons. You are encouraged to contact the Student Counseling Center. Other resources include:

How do I add an Essential Worker?

Per the State of California Essential Workforce Directive, Essential Workers perform in-person work where remote working is not practical. Graduate and Family Housing residents in need of essential services in their on-campus residence may request an essential worker exception by submitting an Essential Worker Request from the Housing Gateway (in the "Other Tasks" section)

Housing Facilities:

Will Student Housing provide enhanced cleaning and disinfection for community spaces?

Student Housing has enhanced custodial services in all high traveled, high touch surfaces. This includes disinfecting community tables, counters, appliances, laundry rooms, doorknobs/handles, light switches, public restrooms, elevator buttons, and stairwell railings twice a day, seven days a week. Additionally, hand sanitizer is available in all public spaces.

I have an empty space in my apartment and was recently notified Student Housing staff are coming in to clean the space and prepare for the new roommate. Am I required to permit staff to be in my apartment, can I decline them entry?

Student Housing is committed to supporting the graduate student need for on-campus housing by having as many students on campus as possible. As part of this, we are working diligently to prepare vacant spaces for incoming students. Residents will be notified in advance of any work in your apartment that will require entry. As a condition of your lease, residents are expected to accommodate Student Housing staff when work is necessary and advance notice is provided. We are aware this work can be disruptive, especially with everyone currently working from home. If you have a specific need, such as a critical meeting or deadline, please contact your community housing office and we will do our best to work around your need. Additionally, please contact your community housing office if you are currently experiencing any symptoms related to COVID-19 so we can reschedule the work.

When staff members come in to complete the work we ask that you practice physical distancing and as much as possible, stay in your bedroom while the work is complete. You can expect Student Housing staff will be wearing face coverings and fresh gloves when they enter your apartment. They will clean and prepare the space. The standard cleaning includes disinfecting the areas cleaned.

What facilities in my community will be open for fall 2020?

Currently, the majority of community rooms and in-door spaces are closed in the Graduate and Family Housing Communities. We are working on a phased approach for re-engaging our community spaces. The roll-out of this will be in line with state, local, and campus guidelines. We will begin with spaces that can be used for private, individual study use. As always, the well-being of our community will be the primary factor in deciding how and when individual community services will re-engage.

Life on Campus:

Does UCI require face coverings?

In compliance with the California Department of Public Health, all individuals on UCI-controlled property are required to wear face coverings to reduce possible exposure and help prevent the spread of COVID-19 within the UCI community. Please read UCI’s Executive Directive for details, including permitted exceptions.

All residents will receive two washable face masks at move-in. Although daily machine washing is recommended, the masks can also be cleaned with soap and water in a sink.

What is the Anteater Pledge?

The Anteater Pledge relies on each member of the campus community doing their part to protect the health and wellbeing of themselves and others. Student Housing staff will provide guidance, education, and reminders of the expectations outlined in the pledge; students/residents are empowered to serve as active bystanders, helping others to remember their responsibility to the community. The pledge is meant to provide expectations for appropriate behavior in line with state, local, and University guidelines; behaviors that elevate to public health risk will be addressed through the conduct process.

What is expected of residents who live on campus?

All members of our campus community, including residents living on campus, are expected to follow the behaviors outlined in the Anteater Pledge. These include:

  • Complete a daily symptoms check.
  • Stay home if you are experiencing any COVID related symptoms.
  • Return home immediately if you begin to feel ill.
  • Follow UCI reporting guidelines related to COVID-19 infections.
  • Wear a face covering at all times (except when dining) on UCI-controlled property.
  • Maintain physical distancing.
  • Participate in contact tracing efforts.
  • Report immediately any COVID-related safety concerns to appropriate campus authorities.
  • Comply with all other UCI guidance that may be issued.

Students who live on campus are expected to participate in weekly asymptomatic testing. Additionally, residents are expected to comply with all Student Housing policies including the policies around guests and gatherings.

What will community life look like in the fall for residents living on campus?

Physical distancing is the best defense against the spread of COVID-19, so the focus this fall will be on providing a wide variety of virtual events. We are committed to supporting robust and engaged housing communities. At this time, co-curricular programming will be virtual and we are working on alternative methods to support community development and engagement.

When will campus events and activities resume?

Currently, most in-person events have been canceled or moved to virtual formats. UCI and Orange County both currently have policies and guidelines in place prohibiting group gatherings. As the campus continues with a phased re-opening, we are working to develop how future events will be structured, but it’s safe to assume we will be following physical distancing protocols for the foreseeable future. At this time, we do not have a timeline on when in-person events will resume. Orange County first needs to get off the state watch list.

I have a question and am not sure who to ask?

If you have housing-specific questions, contact your housing community office (numbers listed below) or Housing Administrative Services at (949) 824-6811. If you have questions about your housing guarantee or a potential placement in Graduate and Family Housing, please e-mail gradguarantee@housing.hsg.uci.edu.

Community Housing Offices:

  • Campus Village (949) 824-7491
  • Palo Verde (949) 824-8918
  • Verano Place (949) 824-5964

For issues that come up after office hours, follow the normal protocol for your housing community.

Still have questions……

Email your question to HousingCovidQuestion@uci.edu