A Guide to Housing Gripes at NYU

Hayden Hall is a popular dorm which NYU students find hard to successfully apply to.

The undergraduate housing reapplication process at NYU has officially launched Phase One. While students are looking into the wide variety of rooming options available, many are troubled by some aspects of the current system. Here are five issues students have with NYU’s housing process that seek university attention.

1. Suitemate and floor-mate compatibility

NYU currently uses a four-question survey asking students to rate their preferences for cleanliness of their room, amount of guests over at a time, noise level and bedtime on a simple scale to match students with similar responses. However, this brief questionnaire is inadequate in determining potential roommates’ true behaviors until after students have moved in. This often causes tension between residents and can lead to an unpleasant dorming experience. This system of selecting roommates and suitemates is a greater issue for incoming freshmen whose roommates are randomly assigned.

Tisch freshman Delaney Mazen said the housing system does not appropriately pair students together based on their preferences.

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“They give us four questions to answer that rely on a half-ass created scale, that doesn’t even have numbers, and then they don’t take that little information into account, it is just so blatantly idiotic to me,” Mazen said. “Both of my roommates were on the opposite side of the scales as I was.”

2. Cost

While President Hamilton announced he will be freezing housing costs for 2016-17 at the current year’s rates, some students are still concerned that low-cost housing options are not widely available on campus.

NYU lists the percentages of rooms within each residence hall classified as low-cost options on their annual housing rates.

For incoming freshman students, 4 out of 10 halls have more than half of its rooms classified as low-cost; four halls either have no affordable housing option at all or only offer it in a very small portion of its rooms. 

For upperclassmen, 5 of the 13 on-campus residence halls do not offer low-cost housing. Only three halls — Coral, Clark and W 13th Street — list a majority of their rooms as low cost.

3. Time assignment to select your room

Students are assigned a priority level to choose housing in Phase Two. Incoming freshmen are given first priority and have the first time slots available to select their rooms through the online housing portal. However, they are constrained to select from freshmen-designated residence halls. Sophomores are then given the second-highest priority level to choose their rooms, and
so forth.

However, due to high demand for housing, not all upperclassmen are able to select a room during Phase Two. Therefore, if you are assigned a late time slot to choose your dorm hall, you may be subject to a designated space in either Manhattan or Brooklyn, regardless of your school.

4. Dorm hall preference not guaranteed

Incoming freshmen are able to rank their residence hall preferences before selecting their rooms to better their chances of getting a favored building. However, during Phase Two, upperclassmen do not have this option and instead select rooms within residence halls based on their availability. Therefore, popular dorm halls fill up quickly, and depending on your room selection time, you may end up in a building that does not suit your needs.

5. Floor plans are unclear

When selecting rooms in the NYU housing portal, students are able to view floor plans of the varying dorm halls before picking a room.

LSP freshman Alison Rao said the layouts and media available to students do not always accurately represent what their suite or room will actually look like.

“It’s hard to compare the layouts and sizes of different residence hall dorms because they are all made to a different scale, so we don’t really know what to expect from our living space until move-in day,” Rao said.

A version of this article appeared in the Monday, March 21 print edition.  Email Carlos Michael at [email protected]

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