/ Residential Life and Housing

Living On and Off Campus

Hope College is a residential college where students live on campus their first three years. Living on campus is an integral part of your Hope College experience.

Housing Process

For new students

Welcome! We are excited at you have chosen Hope College and will be joining our community! As you begin to think about on-campus housing, we encourage to take a moment to explore our housing. As a incoming student, you will live in a residence hall your first year.

Many of you will have questions about how and when you can apply for housing. For fall semester enrollment (on May 1 or after your deposit is received), the Admissions Office will mail out information on how to activate your Hope email. In your email you will receive information about the housing process, how to complete your housing application and when you can expect to receive your fall housing assignment.

For spring semester enrollment, once your deposit is paid, you will receive information from the Admissions Office on how to activate your Hope email. In addition, you will receive seperate communications from the Registrar's Office about scheduling for classes and from Residential Life and Housing about completing your housing application.

Check out the Incoming Student Housing Guide to learn more about the new student housing process.

Living On Campus

Hope housing is designed to grow with you as a student. First- and second-year students at Hope typically live in a residence hall. This allows you to meet new people, understand what it’s like to live in community, and solidify a smaller group of people to transition into a cottage or apartment with. Most of our housing is based on a double and triple room occupancy in facilities without air conditioning. Additionally, we house students by floor or unit based on biological sex. If you have specific needs for your housing, make sure to read the “Housing Accommdation” section below.

In your third year and beyond, many students transition into a cottage or apartment. This allows students to move into an environment with their smaller community of friends and live more independently with the security of the college staff and facilities to support them. In cottages and apartments, students learn to clean and care for a home. Many make some or all of their meals. They experience living with a group of people they are friends with. This living helps them grow in knowing how to support people, give feedback, and work through frustrations and differences together.

On-campus housing is for currently enrolled, full-time, degree-seeking students only. Students must carry a minimum of 12 semester credits of course work per semester to  maintain full-time status. Academic policies pertaining to student load can be found in the College Catalog.

For students who are considering dropping to part-time status and still wish to live in on-campus housing must meet the established criteria:

  • Student must be an enrolled degree-seeking student
  • Student must be registered for a minimum of 6 credit hours per semester, all of which must apply towards your degree

In addition, the college does not offer an option for students to “buy out” a space in their room to reduce the occupancy or to keep the room to themselves. Occupancy of a room may only be decreased if the student in the room has an approved accommodation through the Disability and Accessibility Resources office for a reduced number of roommates or a single-room accommodation.

For questions, please contact the Housing Office at housing@hope.edu

For Returning Students

The returning student housing process occurs during the spring semester. Our housing system offers several diverse options for you to choose from as well as the ability for you to choose who you would like to live with. Below you will find information about options for living on campus and living off campus and how to apply.

For more information, please refer to the Housing Selection Handbook. If you have questions about the housing selection process, please email housing@hope.edu 

Residence Halls

Remaining cottage/apartment and residence hall spaces are assigned in our Open Room Selection process (more detailed info is found on the room selection process page). This process will be held in person April 9 and 10, 2024, in the Schaap Auditorium in the Bultman Student Center.

All students without a housing assignment will be automatically entered into the Open Room Selection process.

You will randomly be assigned a room selection number based on how many years you have been in college attendance. This number will dictate the time you will be selecting your room. 

A few notes about Open Room Selection:

  • When you select a room, you wil name your roommate. So, after receiving your room selection numbers, you and your roommate should select your room using the lowest number assigned to you.
    • If you are seeking a roommate, we encourage you to take a look the Find A Roommate website where you can see who is looking for a roommate and create your own posting where students can find you. Or consider attending the Roommate Meet and Greet, a event run by the Residential Life, where you can connect with others looking for a roommate.
  • Not all hall rooms will be available to select at Open Room Selection. Rooms where students have elected to remain for the next academic year (see “Staying in Your Current Room” below) and rooms strategically selected for incoming first-year students will not be included in Open Room Selection.
  • If you have questions about housing costs, please visit the cost of attendence webpage for housing rates for the upcoming academic year.

Room Selection Information

Apartments and Cottages

In many cottages, the RA of the cottage names the people who will be living with them. However, some RAs will be overseeing their cottage as well as a neighboring cottage, which allows us to put some cottages into the Open Apartment/Cottage application process. Apartment complexes have one to two RAs per complex, leaving the rest to be assigned in the Open Apartment/Cottage process.

Only current enrolled returning students are eligible to apply in the Apartment/Cottage Application Process.  New incoming and transfer students are not eligible for this housing process.

Open apartments and cottages are distributed to students based on the groups’ cumulative earned credit score. Because of the varied sizes of apartments/cottages, there are multiple due dates to be considered for different configurations. If you would like to apply for an apartment/cottage:

  • Identify the people you want to live with. Students must be currently enrolled returning students (new incoming/transfer students are not eligable for this housing process).
  • We encourage you to understand the cost of the housing you are applying for. The 2024–2025 housing costs can be found at Business Services website.
  • Submit the completed, appropriate housing application from the listing below. Only one application must be submitted per group. No applications will be accepted if there are “openings” in the application (e.g., 10 students on a 10-person application)
  • You will need to list the earned credits for each student on the application. You can view your earned credits on your plus.hope.edu account by looking at your unofficial transcript. Credits you are currently taking during the spring semester do not count towards this total
  • DO NOT apply for an apartment if you:
    • Have been named to live in a cottage or
    • Received off-campus or parent commuter permission or
    • Are planning to attend an off-campus study program for the fall semester

The Housing Office will then:

  • Distribute apartments/cottages to the top credit-bearing group and will continue down the list until all apartments have been distributed, giving consideration to balance the amount of male/female groups and those with approved housing accommodations.
  • If you receive an apartment, your group will be sent an email stating the apartment/cottage you received. The housing office will assign each person listed on the applicaton to the specific cottage or apartment awarded. Each resident will be required to submit the 2024–2025 Housing Confirmation Form by March 22, 2024, to confirm your housing, select a meal plan (if applicable), and sign your 2024–2025 Housing Agreement

If you do not receive an apartment/cottage, you can reconfigure your group and re-apply for a different allotment of apartments/cottages. If at the completion of the apartment/cottage process you do not receive a apartment or cottage, you will automatically be entered into Open Room Selection.

Any rooms not filled by RAs or in the Open Apartment/Cottage process will be listed in the Open Room Selection process outlined in the Residence Hall section.

Students can view all of our apartment/cottage housing options on the Housing Units and Details spreadsheet, which will provide information about the number of residents and amenities. The 2024 - 2025 Housing Costs can be found at Business Services Website.

Apartment/Cottage Applications & Deadlines

Staying in Your Current Room

If you are electing to stay in your current room, you will indicate that by completing your Housing Confirmation Form. You will also indicate the roommate that you would like to live with. This can be your current roommate, or you can name a new roommate to join you next academic year. If you do not indicate a roommate, the open space wil be added to the Open Room Selection process.

Note: Staying in your location is not permitted if you live in an apartment, cottage, Dykstra, Lichty, Scott, or a single room in a residence hall.

Finding a Roommate
Before Open Room Selection, you can post information on Looking For A Roommate. You can also look at other students’ postings. If you do not have a roommate when you select your room, the Housing Office will look at your housing preferences and match you with a current student or an incoming transfer, new or exchange student who does not have a roommate.
Studying Off Campus in the Fall

We just need to know your plans! We ask that you fill out the Housing Confirmation Form indicating that you will be studying off campus for the fall semester.

If you have housing arrangments made for spring semester, please note that on your form. If you do not have arrangements, don't worry! We will contact you in November to make arrangements for next spring semester when you are back on campus.

Housing Accommodations

Some people need specific types of housing or specific amenities in their housing because of a personal condition. If you have a condition that substantially limits major life activity (including allergies), you may be eligible for specific housing accommodations. To inquire and/or request housing accommodations, you must contact Disability and Accessibility Resources (DAR). DAR works with you to understand your needs, compile any necessary documentation and make accommodation determinations. These determinations are given to the Housing Office, and we identify housing that meets the accommodations.

In order to guarantee a housing placement for an approved accommodation, the above process must be completed for cottage, apartment and residence halls by February 1, 2023. Any accommodations approved after this date will be fulfilled as space becomes available.

Students who identify as transgender and have questions or concerns about their housing options should contact Associate Dean of Residential Life and Education Kristyn Bochniak at bochniak@hope.edu.

If you are concerned about the housing structure and do not have a condition that limits major life activities, please contact housing@hope.edu.

Request an Accommodation

Service or Assistance Animals

Assistance animals must be requested and approved as a reasonable accommodation through Disability and Accessibility Resources (DAR). All animals living in campus housing must be registered with Student Development prior to coming to campus. Please contact DAR to get started with this process.

Service and assistance animal definition

You will receive an email notification from Disability and Accessibility Resources if your request is approved or denied. You will then need to meet with Dr. Jobson before an assistance and/or service animal is brought into on-campus housing.

Living Off Campus

We are a residential college that values the learning, relationships and community students gain while living on campus. In a student’s fourth year at Hope, they can choose to continue living on campus or seek off-campus housing. Seeking off-campus housing gives students the opportunity to continue growing in independence, while remaining on campus gives you unique housing options without the hassle of year-long leases and landlords, as well as continued guidance and support from the college.  

For a number of personal reasons, some students will seek Parent Commuter Status. This allows students to attend Hope College while living at home with their parent or guardian. To request Parent Commuter permission, students must be living within 35 miles of campus at their parent/guardian’s primiary address. If a student receives permission and it is determined that you are not living at your parent/guardians primary address, you will be subject to action through the student conduct process and, if found responsible, you will be charged for on-campus housing for the entire academic year.

If you are a current student and interested in applying for Off-Campus/Parent Commuter permission for the 2024–2025 academic year, the application will be available in your Hope Housing Portal under Apps & Forms in January 2024. The deadline to apply is February 12, 2024. If approved, you will receive an email confirming your housing status change, and be asked to complete the 2024–2025 Housing Confirmation Form.

Currently enrolled students interested in living off campus or commuting from their parent/guardian’s primary residence must apply annually. Approval for off-campus or parent commuter status is for the requested academic year only. Students who meet the criteria below are eligible to request off-campus or parent commuter permission.

  • Student is in their fourth year 
  • Student is 23 years old by the start of the academic year (August 27, 2024)
  • Student is married with proof of marriage
  • Student is the custodial parent of a minor child
  • Student is commuting from their parent/guardian’s primary residence which must be within 35 driving miles of campus (for parent commuter permission only)

Students are strongly advised not to make contractual agreements or financial commitments in the community before receiving off-campus permission. All notifications (approval or otherwise) will be sent to the student via their Hope College email from Residential Life and Housing. Students should not assume approval before receiving notification of approval.

The college reserves the right to deny off-campus applications submitted by students who do not meet the criteria listed above or have been subject to college disciplinary action. 

Choosing to live off campus or commuting can change your financial aid package. We encourage you to contact the Financial Aid Office at 616.395.7765 or finaid@hope.edu to verify any potential impact to your financial aid package before apply.

Questions regarding the off-campus/parent commuter application process can be directed to housing@hope.edu.

For returning students, the deadline to apply for off-campus or parent commuter status is February 12, 2024. If you missed the deadline and still wish to apply, email housing@hope.edu.  

Apply for off-campus or Parent Commuter Status

Possible Impact on Financial Aid
Choosing to live off campus or commuting can change your financial aid package. We encourage you to contact the Financial Aid Office, 616.395.7765 or finaid@hope.edu, to verify any potential impact to your financial aid package before applying.
Considerations Before Signing an Off-Campus Lease
The Community and Neighborhood Services Department of the City of Holland provides information, referrals and assistance regarding tenant and landlord rights and responsibilities with regard to security deposits, evictions, leases and rental agreements.
Off-Campus Study Programs
If you intend to participate in an off-campus study program in the fall semester of the 2023–2024 academic year and wish to live off campus during the spring semester, please email housing@hope.edu. You must meet the criteria (listed above) to be approved to live off campus.
Off-Campus Rentals

Contact the landlords listed on inHope to look for off-campus housing. Any communication and agreement is between you and the landlord. Please make sure your lease dates coincide with your academic year housing needs.

Property owners can advertise rentals on a private listing of off-campus rentals available for students. Begin the process here.

If you have any questions about the application process, please feel free to contact the Housing Office at 616.395.7943 or housing@hope.edu.