How to find Accommodation in USA for International Students?

Student Accommodation in the USA
Study Abroad Expert November 29, 2023

Finding suitable student accommodation in the USA is an essential step towards a successful and fulfilling experience. However, this can be a daunting task, especially when you are unfamiliar with the local housing market and face unique challenges as an international student. 

Therefore, it is essential to understand the different housing options available in the USA for international students and local rent practices with a limited budget. 

We are here to guide you on how to secure accommodation in USA for students and addressing the unique challenges faced by international students and providing valuable insights to ensure a smooth transition into your new American life. 

But, first let us understand why USA is among the popular study destination for students worldwide. 

Why USA is a Popular Study Destination for International Students?

The United States of America is a popular higher education destination for international students due to its prestigious universities, diverse academic programs, and vibrant cultural experiences. 

Here are some of the key reasons why international students choose to study in the USA: 

1. Academic Excellence

The USA is home to many of the world’s top universities, including Harvard University, Stanford University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Princeton University. These universities offer world-class education and research opportunities across a wide range of disciplines. 

2. Diverse Range of Programs

The U.S. offers an extensive and diverse range of academic programs and courses. Whether it is STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), humanities, business, or the arts, students can find specialized and comprehensive courses to suit their interests and career goals. 

3. Flexibility and innovation

American universities are known for their flexible curriculum structures and innovative teaching approaches. Students can explore multiple academic areas, participate in internships, and engage in hands-on learning experiences. 

4. Global Recognition of Degrees

Degrees from U.S. universities are widely recognized and respected worldwide. This global recognition opens doors to a plethora of career opportunities, making it an attractive option for ambitious students aiming for international success. 

5. Career Opportunities

The USA has a strong economy and a thriving job market. International students who graduate from US universities are well-positioned for success in the global workforce. 

6. Quality of Life

Beyond academics, the U.S. offers a high quality of life with diverse entertainment options, cultural experiences, and a focus on student well-being. Many campuses provide extensive support services for international students, ensuring a smooth transition and comfortable stay. 

In addition to these reasons, the USA also offers a variety of scholarships and financial aid opportunities for international students. This can make it more affordable for international students to study in the USA. 

Different Options for Student Accommodation in the USA

Alongside academic preparation, finding suitable accommodation is crucial. As an international student, understanding the diverse housing options available in the USA is essential to making an informed decision that aligns with your needs and preferences. 

1. On-Campus Housing

On-campus housing refers to accommodation provided by the university itself, typically in the form of dormitory-style buildings or residence halls.  

These facilities offer a convenient and immersive living experience, placing students within proximity to classrooms, libraries, dining halls, and other campus amenities. Accommodation in US universities costs between $9,800-11,100 per year. 


  • Proximity to classes, libraries, and campus facilities. 
  • Opportunities to build a keen sense of community with fellow students. 
  • Often equipped with essential amenities, such as Wi-Fi, laundry facilities, and security services. 
  • On-campus housing typically offers enhanced security measures. 


  • On-campus housing may come with rules and regulations that limit personal freedom. 
  • There may be a high demand, leading to limited spaces. 
  • On-campus housing often comes with higher rent and fees compared to off-campus options. 

2. Off-Campus Housing

Off-campus housing refers to accommodation options located outside the university premises. This includes apartments, shared apartments, homestays, and furnished apartments.  

Off-campus housing offers greater independence and flexibility in terms of living arrangements and neighbourhood choices. 


  • Increased freedom and autonomy in selecting living arrangements. 
  • A wide range of choices, from apartments to shared houses. 
  • In some cases, off-campus housing can be more affordable, especially when considering shared accommodations. 
  • Living off-campus provides opportunities to explore different neighbourhoods. 
  • Homestays can provide a sense of belonging and support. 


  • May require commuting to campus, which can be time-consuming. 
  • Students are responsible for utilities, maintenance, and other aspects of living independently. 
  • Living off-campus may limit access to campus amenities and events. 

3. Homestays

Homestays provide an immersive cultural experience by allowing international students to live with an American host family. Students typically have a private bedroom and shared communal areas, along with meals and cultural insights. 


  • Exposure to the local culture and customs. 
  • Daily interaction with native speakers aids language development. 
  • Homestay families often provide guidance and support. 
  • Homestays often include meals prepared by the host family, offering home-cooked cuisine and a sense of family. 


  • Limited autonomy compared to living independently. 
  • Adjusting to the practices of a new household may take time. 
  • Potential cultural differences may require patience, understanding, and open communication. 

Worried about which student accommodation in the USA would be right for you? Get expert consultation at Shuraa Education for your studying abroad dream. 

Get Personalized Study Abroad Advice Now!

Cost of Accommodation for International Students in USA

Here is a general breakdown of the average monthly accommodation costs for international students in the USA: 

1. On-campus housing:

  • Average annual cost: $9,800 – $11,100 
  • Monthly range: $817 – $925


2. Off-campus housing:

  • Average monthly cost: $1,000 – $2,000 
  • Monthly range: $600 – $3,000 (depending on location, type of accommodation, and amenities)


3. Homestays:

  • Average monthly cost: $700 – $1,200 
  • Monthly range: $500 – $1,500 (depending on location, type of homestay, and meals included)


4. Additional Costs to Consider:

In addition to rent, international students may also need to consider additional expenses such as: 

  • Utilities: $100 – $200 per month 
  • Transportation: $50 – $100 per month (depending on location and transportation options) 
  • Food: $200 – $400 per month (depending on lifestyle and cooking habits)


Please note, the cost of student accommodation in the USA can vary significantly depending on several factors, including: 

1. Location

Housing costs are higher in urban areas and popular study destinations like New York, Los Angeles, and Boston compared to smaller towns or rural areas. 

2. Accommodation Type

On-campus housing typically costs less than off-campus housing, but the specific cost depends on the university, the type of room, and the meal plan. Off-campus housing options also vary in price, with apartments, shared apartments, and homestays being less expensive than furnished apartments. 

3. Amenities

Accommodations with more amenities, such as private bathrooms, laundry facilities, and fitness centres, tend to be more expensive. 

4. Lease Terms

The length of the lease and the time of year can also affect the cost of accommodation. Shorter leases and leases signed during peak seasons may have higher rent prices.

Accommodation in USA for Indian Students

Indian students have a variety of accommodation options available to them in the USA, each with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. 

The cost of accommodation in the USA for Indian Students can vary significantly depending on several factors, including location, housing type, amenities, and lease terms. 

However, in general, Indian students may expected to pay INR 65,000 – 92,000 INR (average) per month for On-campus housing, and 39,000 – 54,000 INR (average) per month for shared apartments. 

Tips for Saving Money on Accommodations

Here are some tips for saving money on accommodation in the USA for students: 

1. Consider living off-campus

Off-campus housing is more affordable than on-campus housing. 

2. Share an apartment

Sharing an apartment with roommates is a wonderful way to save money on rent. 

3. Choose a location with lower living costs

Consider living in a smaller city or rural area where the cost of living is lower. 

4. Look for discounts and scholarships

Many universities and organizations offer discounts and scholarships for international students on accommodation.  

5. Negotiate your rent

Do not be afraid to negotiate your rent with your landlord, especially if you are signing a long-term lease. 

6. Seek Guidance from Fellow Students

Connect with current or former international students for advice and recommendations. Utilize online platforms and student forums to network with peers.

Contact Our Experts Today.

Legal Considerations

Securing student accommodations in the USA requires careful consideration of both housing options and legal implications. 

Here is an overview of the legal aspects to keep in mind: 

  • Lease agreements are legally binding contracts that outline the terms and conditions of renting a property. It is crucial for international students to thoroughly understand the lease agreement before signing. 
  • Before signing a lease, international students may need to provide additional documentation to the landlord, such as proof of enrolment, proof of identification, proof of financial means, etc. 
  • Familiarize yourself with local regulations regarding tenant rights, eviction procedures, and housing discrimination laws. 
  • In case of any disputes or legal issues related to housing, consult with an attorney specializing in landlord-tenant law. 
  • Exercise caution when searching for accommodations online. Be wary of listings that appear too good to be true, request upfront payments before viewing the property.


Shuraa Education’s Expertise for International Students in the USA

Finding suitable accommodation in USA can be a daunting task for international students, but with careful planning, research, and understanding of legal aspects, you can secure a comfortable and affordable home away from home. 

Remember, the key to a successful accommodation search lies in thorough research, careful consideration of your needs and preferences, and seeking guidance when necessary. 

If you are planning for higher education in the USA and worried about the process, contact study abroad experts like Shuraa Education. From profile evaluation and exploring suitable USA universities to assisting with visa & even accommodation, Shuraa is here to support you every step of the way. 

Connect with us at or through call/WhatsApp at +91 931 999 8924 for expert advice and assistance. 

Your journey to education in the USA is not just about finding a place to stay, it is about academic success that will shape your future

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are the on-campus housing options in the USA, and how do I apply for them?

On-campus housing includes dormitories, residence halls, and apartments. Application processes vary by university but typically involve submitting an application form, specifying preferences, and adhering to set deadlines. 

2. Are there any specific requirements or documents needed to secure accommodation as an international student?

When securing student accommodation in the USA, landlords or housing providers may require certain documents such as proof of enrolment at a university or college, proof of financial capability to cover rent (such as bank statements or sponsorship letters), and identification documents like a passport or visa. 

3. What is a homestay, and how does it contribute to the international student experience?

A homestay involves living with a local family, providing cultural immersion and language practice. It offers a unique opportunity to experience daily life in the host country and often comes with built-in support from the host family. 

4. Is it better to live on-campus or off-campus as an international student in the USA?

The decision to live on-campus or off-campus as an international student in the USA depends on personal preferences and individual circumstances. Consider factors such as location, cost, social preferences, and personal comfort when making this decision. 

5. Why should I consider seeking assistance from study abroad experts like Shuraa Education in finding student accommodation in the USA?

Shuraa Education provides personalized guidance, helping with profile evaluation, university selection, visa assistance, and accommodation. Their expertise streamlines the process, ensuring a smoother transition for international students.

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