Room Selection FAQ

Who is eligible to apply?

You must be a full-time student enrolled in a degree-granting program for Fall 2020 and in good financial and disciplinary standing in order to apply. Please check your standing in the Student Registration System prior to the start of the Room Selection process to be sure your graduation year is accurate. This is particularly important since class year impacts the timeslot you will get.

How do I apply for a room for next year?

That depends on which process you’d like to use! First read up on the three different phases of Room Selection, because each application process is different. When the application is open for the process you’d like to apply to, go to the room assignment portal, MyHomeAtPenn, and complete your application.

What are the phases of the Room Selection process?

Phase 1: Program Communities

Phase 2: Return to House, including Room Retention

Phase 3: Move to Another House

Is housing guaranteed?

No, housing is not guaranteed for returning undergraduate students, but space is generally available if you are flexible in the types of rooms you are willing to accept.

How do I apply as a single applicant?

You should apply as a group of 1. You are automatically the Captain of your group. You must create a group by filling in a group name and password. Once you have created the group, verify it immediately. If you are not applying to a Program Community or do not get accepted, you will be emailed a timeslot for Return to House and/or Move to Another House.

Will the Housing Assignments Office help me find a roommate if I need one?

You can request to join our private "Find a Roommate" Facebook group to look for a compatible roommate.

How do I apply for Gender Inclusive Housing?

Students who want to apply for Gender Inclusive Housing should select “yes” for the Gender Inclusive Housing question when they apply for housing at MyHomeAtPenn. Once you select Gender Inclusive Housing, that selection remains active from year to year, unless you request a change by contacting the Housing Assignments Office at living@upenn.edu. Selecting Gender Inclusive Housing does not change your sex assigned at birth in the Student Registration System.

If you are applying for housing as part of a group, all roommates in the group must sign up for Gender Inclusive Housing. During open selection, students who are participating in Gender Inclusive Housing may only join a partially filled room if the students who have already selected that room are also participating in Gender Inclusive Housing.

How do I select my room?

If you are applying to a Program Community and are accepted, you will not select a specific room. The House Dean will assign you to a room.

For Return to House and Move to Another House, verified groups will be assigned a priority selection timeslot. The group Captain is responsible for signing into MyHomeAtPenn at or after the assigned timeslot and selecting rooms for the members of their group. If the Captain fails to do this, current House residents (for Return to House) or any group members (for Move to Another House) may select rooms for themselves and their roommates during open selection.

What’s the policy on students being assigned to specific bedrooms?

All students must be assigned to specific bedrooms. This is especially important for students living in suites and apartments that contain multiple bedrooms. For the Return to House and Move to Another House phases, Captains will be required to place group members in specific bedrooms during priority selection. During open selection, anyone who selects a room(s) for themselves and/or their roommates will be required to place group members in specific bedrooms. Your group should discuss who will take which bedrooms ahead of your selection timeslot, especially if you are considering applying for room types that include both private and shared bedrooms, such as a 3 bedroom quad.

It’s important to know that interior bedroom doors have locks on them, so students will not have access to bedrooms other than the one assigned to them during the Room Selection process. The Housing Assignments Office will work with roommates who wish to shuffle bedrooms within a multiple-room suite or apartment, but roommates will no longer be able to enact these in-suite room changes on their own.

How can I tell which bedrooms are which in a suite that has multiple bedrooms?

Each bed space within a suite is assigned an alphanumeric value. For example, in a 4 bedroom quad, the four bed spaces are designated A, B, C, and D. In a 3 bedroom quad, the single bedrooms are designated A and B, and the bed spaces in the shared bedroom are designated C1 and C2. Floor plans with the bed spaces marked in this way are available under the Layout/Floor Plan tab for each College House on the Four-Year Houses webpage and the Upperclass Houses webpage.

Now that we’re assigned specific bedrooms, can my suite mates and I swap bedrooms within our suite?

Yes, but there is a process. Prior to Move-In, if suite mates would like to swap bedrooms within the suite, all members of the suite must email living@upenn.edu stating their approval of the change, even the roommates who will not be moving. Please note that since interior bedroom doors have locks on them, roommates will not be able to swap bedrooms within a suite independently of the Housing Assignments Office.

How do I apply if I will be participating in Study Abroad during Room Selection?

The processes are online and you can participate as long as you have internet access and you meet the eligibility requirements. Be sure to check your email regularly for information and reminders and keep in mind any time differences. All deadlines are in Eastern Daylight Time.

If you are applying for Return to House, your group Captain will be able to assign you to a room in your previous House. If you are a group of 1, and you lived in your House in the Fall semester or the previous Spring semester (if participating in a yearlong abroad program), you should be able to assign yourself a room during your timeslot.

More information about Room Selection for students studying abroad is available here.

Do I need to confirm my housing if I am a returning student?

No, you do not need to confirm. Your housing assignment will be posted on MyHomeAtPenn. Please log in to verify the details.

Can I cancel my housing?

Prior to taking occupancy, you can cancel your room assignment, but you will be charged a cancellation fee which escalates throughout the summer. The charge is based on the date that written (or electronic) notice of cancellation is received by the Assignments Office. The dates and fees are listed in the Terms and Conditions for University Housing. To cancel your housing, log in to MyHomeAtPenn and go back into your housing application. In the last step in the top menu, there is a link to cancel your housing assignment.

Once you take occupancy or pick up keys, your assignment cannot be cancelled.

Please also keep Room Selection Room Change in mind as an alternative to cancelling your housing. If you are unhappy with your room assignment, you can request a different assignment without cancelling your original assignment and incurring a cancellation fee.

What if I picked a room during Room Selection but I would prefer a different room?

You have two options:

  1. If Room Selection is still going on, you can cancel your assignment and apply to another process. Please note that if you cancel your original assignment and do not select a room during another process, you will be charged a cancellation fee.
  2. You can keep your original assignment and submit a Room Selection Room Change request. If a space you requested becomes available, it will be offered to you. If none of your preferred room types become available, you will keep your original assignment. Students who secure a new room assignment through the Room Selection Room Change process will not be charged a cancellation fee.


How does a Room Selection Room Change work?

If you received a room during Room Selection but would like to request a different room, you may request a Room Selection Room Change. The Room Selection Room Change form will be available on MyHomeAtPenn from February 24 through July 31. As spaces become available through cancellations, they will be offered to students on the Room Selection Room Change list. If you are offered a space, you must accept it in writing to living@upenn.edu within 48 business hours. If we do not hear from you, the offer expires. If none of your preferred room types become available by August 6, you will keep your original assignment. Students who secure a new room assignment through the Room Selection Room Change process will not be charged a cancellation fee, but please note that your rent rate may change based on your new room type.