International Student Life: Off Campus Housing

Off-campus housing offers more options in terms of location, type of housing and costs. However, it also takes more effort to find the housing you want. Listed below are some resources you can use to help you find your own apartment or home.

Since affordable housing in Portland is in demand and goes quickly once listed, you may need to plan temporary housing for when you arrive and then search for permanent housing when you are in Portland. Before you arrive in Portland, spend some time researching locations, types of housing and the typical costs so you are prepared with a search plan and a budget. Here are some helpful web sites with general information about Portland and housing:

You may also be interested to know that many apartments do not come with furniture or dishes. Many students opt to purchase furniture from stores like Target or IKEA or from second-hand stores like Goodwill. Renting furniture is also an option where you can pay a monthly fee to furnish your entire apartment from a store like CORT. For information about renting furniture or to order online, visit

Renting or Leasing – Legal Issues
Negotiating and signing a housing contract can be confusing or difficult – especially if English is not your first language. The PSU Student Legal Services (SLS) office has excellent information about housing agreements and can help you with questions about a housing contract or dispute. We highly recommend reading the SLS Comprehensive Landlord-Tenant Handbook before you rent your off-campus housing. If you would like someone to help you with a housing contract or explain the contents before you sign it, contact SLS at 503-725-4556 or .

Websites & Resources
Several websites you might find helpful for off-campus housing information are:
The Willamette Week –
The Oregonian –
Portland Roommate Referral Service –
Apartment search engine –
Apartment list -
Local housing search –
Home Forward (Housing Authority of Portland) –
Hot Pads apartment search engine –
Live Lovely apartment search engine -
Roommates –
Green Renter –

Zillow -
Apartmentguide -

RentLingo: RentLingo is a new website that takes data from multiple websites and compiles it for an easier search of all available options.  There is also an option from each listing to contact the renter, so you can start the whole process through this one site.

Rent.Com is a similar service to RentLingo that shows information from a variety of different sources and allows you to contact renters directly through their site.

Housing Costs

The cost of a shared apartment starts at about $500/month per person, not including utilities (water, electricity, etc.). If you choose to live alone off-campus housing can start at $800 per month and can often cost $1,200 per month. Some utilities require setup fees and/or deposits. Most renters require a one-year rental contract and will expect payment of first and last month’s rent and security deposit at the time of rental.

Disclaimer: This document is meant to provide assistance in locating off-campus housing. Inclusion of any property or rental unit on this website does not constitute, and shall not be construed or reported as an endorsement or approval by the University Housing Office or Portland State University of the landlord, its properties, or its business practices. The University Housing Office or Portland State University expressly disclaim any and all responsibility for any problems that may arise with regard to such property or rental units or with regard to disputes between landlords and tenants concerning such property or rental units. All prospective tenants are encouraged to exercise their own good judgment when evaluating a prospective rental unit or landlord.