University of Washington

Office of Academic Services

Thomson Hall Room 111



Housing Ideas for UW Students


The University of Washington has housing available on or near campus; many graduate students live off-campus in apartments or shared-rent houses in one of the neighborhoods listed below. As Autumn draws nearer, the number of vacancies will decline significantly, especially by mid-September.

Most students live off campus in one of the neighborhoods listed below. By September, especially mid-month, there is less choice available, although it is still possible to find housing within a reasonable distance from the UW. Check the Metro Bus Trip Planner for bus routes and schedules unless the accommodations are close enough to walk.


  • U-District, Wallingford, Laurelhurst, Sandpoint, Montlake, Broadway (Capitol Hill), Northgate, Lake City, Maple Leaf, Fremont, Phinney, Greenlake, Ballard, Eastlake, Ravenna, Viewridge, and Wedgewood. (Seattle Area Map)
  •  Walking/Biking Distance: U-District, Eastlake, Ravenna, Laurelhurst, Wallingford are within walking or easy biking distance of the UW.

Finding Housing:


On-campus housing options for graduate students are plentiful and varied. Singles and families are encouraged to contact Housing & Food Services for information.
301 Schmitz Hall

Housing and Food Services (HFS): 


Off Campus Housing Affairs Office (OCHA): The student-run Off Campus Housing Affairs is a valuable resource for students looking for private housing in the Seattle area. OCHA’s website includes a searchable database of rental postings, details of Washington State laws for landlords and tenants, and information on Seattle living locations, although this site is currently under construction. (Note: The Jackson School has no connection to any external Website listed here and does not endorse or promote any services they may offer.) Of particular interest to international students:

Other Housing Links


Before checking housing listings, you may want to tour some of the neighborhoods. Popular areas outside the University District include Wallingford, Fremont, Ballard, Greenlake, Phinney Ridge, Roosevelt and Broadway/Capitol Hill.

Some students, particularly those with families, find housing in Seattle’s outlying areas more affordable. Areas you might consider are: Shoreline, Lynnwood and Mountlake Terrace (north); Bothell (north), Kirkland and Redmond (east); and Kent, Federal Way and Renton (south). Rates are lower in areas north and south of Seattle and vacancy rates may be higher. In those cities to the east, rents tend to be above the Seattle average. Commuting from these distances can be time-consuming; it helps if you can avoid rush hour.

More information on Seattle neighborhoods is available on the GPSS and SHA websites listed above.


Seattle-area traffic can be heavy during peak hours, and because parking on campus is limited and expensive, you should consider access to public transportation when deciding where to live. There is ample housing within walking distance of the UW

U-PASS for Metro buses: You will automatically receive a bus pass (U-PASS) (Web site: with your registration confirmation.  Bus transportation is reliable and efficient, especially for daily commuting. With your U-Pass and one or more friends, you can also carpool at reduced rate in the Montlake Parking Lot. For more details, see

Park & Ride: By utilizing the Park & Ride system, you can drive part of the way, leave your car and take the bus. Parking lots in designated locations near principal bus routes allow for a less stressful commute.

Biking: Many students bike to campus, or combine biking with taking the bus - Metro buses are equipped with bike racks. Bike lockers and racks for securing bicycles are available across campus.

This page last edited: 06/2014

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African Studies Program
University of Washington
326 Thomson Hall
Box 353650
Seattle, WA 98195

Joel Ngugi / Chair
Associate Professor, School of Law

Mary Kay Gugerty/Adjunct Director
Associate Professor, Evans School of Public Affairs

Erin Murphy/Program Assistant
Autumn Quarter Office Hours: Tues/Thurs 9-12, or by appt.
206.616.0998 office
206.685.0668 fax

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