Everything you need you need to know about housing at RIT

Riverknoll is as creepy as it looks

Before you can even settle in your dorms, it’s time to choose your housing situation for next year. You may be set on moving in with floor-mates or opting for a single room far, far away from humanity. Either way, you have little time to spare before you miss the opportunity for your first pick.

With every housing option comes its unshakable stigma – stemming from stories and rumors passed down by generations of Tigers. If you’re a first year, it’s not easy to decipher what’s best for you when all you have to go off of is staged pictures. 

Let me break it down for you.

Pros of dorm life

If you’re into maintaining a social life, living in the dorms can make that a reality. You’re constantly surrounded by freshmen and RAs who make socialization unavoidable. You can also lead a simpler life – with limited space for belongings, you’re forced to downsize, and you don’t have to worry about buying furniture.

The location right down the Quarter Mile makes commuting to and from class so much easier. There’s no need to rely on the shuttle. Plus Sols and Co-ho are just minutes away should you get hungry.

Cons of dorm life

They’re the only place you will have an RA. You’re still under supervision and depending on who you have, that can be a nightmare – especially when Friday night rounds are a thing. Living without access to a kitchen and a full sized fridge limits your food options tremendously; you think you can live off ramen and Gracie’s and maintain your sanity, but you can’t.

Being surrounded by the same people everyday can make you insane, and it’s equally as expensive as moving into another RIT housing area.

University Commons (UC)



UC is probably the most coveted living area on-campus. It’s location, conditions, and aesthetic make it seem like living in a condo. Typically, you get your own room, too!

Located right across the way from Global Village, some apartments can be an easy and fast walk to class. If you do live in some of the further apartments, there is a shuttle available to take as well. You’re likely to get a big room to yourself – a dream only few can afford. Plus, washer, dryer, and dishwasher per apartment! *floats*


All of this is probably because UC is the most expensive housing option RIT has to offer. Parties seem to happen here all too frequently. Expect vomit, loud music, and general drunk going-ons. There are also monthly housing inspections. If you’re located closer to campus, be prepared to have everyone park in your spots.

Perkins Green

If suburbia was a part of college


When first passing by Perkins, you may feel like you’re in a good wholesome family-oriented neighborhood. It has a comforting vibe, a manicured looked, and a generally quiet atmosphere.

The large green fields and scattered BBQ pits are perfect for chill get-togethers during the warmer seasons, and the size of the apartments can fit everything you need to survive and then some. Plus, they’re affordable, and the lot is about 10 minutes away from dorms which means you don’t have to rely on the shuttle (except when it’s Winter).


ACs and central air are not included in these apartments. Be prepared to purchase one if you plan on staying during the warmer seasons. If you plan to have parties, things can heat up real quick. You can open the windows, but Campo is always around – expect to be approached if you or your friends are acting up.

With each Perkins apartment comes a complimentary odor that doesn’t seem to go away. You might get used to it after a while, but your guests will bring it up. The laundry facilities aren’t too far away, but if you’re lugging your heavy load, it can feel like a struggle. (Plus, the room is a pretty sketchy scene filled with bugs and machines that break frequently.)

Global Village

No kitchen. No problem. Global Village is the second most coveted place on campus.


You are literally living on academic side. You can leave your 8am class and head straight back to bed if you want. Surrounding you are places to eat, work out, do your hair, etc. Hotel-like suites can make you feel like you’re vacationing all semester – especially with all that travel photography on the walls. Plus, no need to buy furniture.


You either have a kitchen or you share one. Sharing a kitchen with a bunch of strangers could possibly be alright, except if they’re sloppy and take your food from the communal fridge, and you can only live there for a year regardless of how much you love it. 

There’s a lot of activity in Global Village plaza during the semester. Depending on where you’re situated, you may incur some sleepless nights.


Rumor has it Riverknoll was not meant to last as long as it has, and it’s true! The lot started as temporary housing to accommodate RIT’s growing population. Still up and running, the trailer-like apartments have some people scared to list it as a choice, but is it as awful as it seems?



This is the most affordable housing option RIT offers. In the grand scheme of things, it can help you save some pretty pennies – just far enough from campus to maintain a quiet atmosphere, and just close enough to walk to class. Plus, campo is pretty chill when it comes to parties in this area, just don’t go outside and act a fool.


You will need to buy your own furniture, and the kitchen area is tight making it hard to upkeep especially if you’re living with more than one person. The internet situation is less than stellar; you have to get your own internet. RIT offers to partially reimburse you for it but only if you use their provider.

It’s a pretty run down complex. The maintenance is rumored to be mediocre at best. Expect to be fixing up issues on your own. And there are bugs. Everywhere. You will most likely encounter a bug problem.


Ah, Colony. Famous for it’s frequent dumpster fires, this lot is a hot mess. It’s a step up from Riverknoll, but known to give the most headaches to it’s tenants.

It could be worse…


If you’re lucky, you can be assigned to a townhouse. With a basement, big kitchen, and extra bathrooms, you are guaranteed a more comfortable living situation with your roommates, and access to RIT wifi! On top of this, Colony is Affordable, plus maintenance is quick to respond to work orders.


Flooding may occur in your basement area. If you don’t properly secure your belongings, you can end up with heaps of water damage. Management is known to perform inspections more than normal, so expect to have workers enter your home on random occasions.

This is the furthest RIT Apartment area from campus. You will need to rely on the shuttle daily should you be without a car or bike. Parties happen here every weekend without fail. It can get pretty rowdy too. If you’re one to stay in and enjoy a nice weekend night, you’re going to have a tough time.

No AC. This is a big one. And the parking lot can get filled quick.

Racquet Club

You probably didn’t even know this place exists, but it does.

The living experience at Racquet Club is all over the place. While some have had terribly run down apartments, others had a great one. This is a roll of dice kind of situation, but if you’re a fan of quiet areas and have a car, this place is for you!


This is a quiet place with no parties – finally a place to be at peace. Maintenance is highly favored and quick to respond to work orders, and you get a pretty sweet balcony. Plus there is AC!


RC has a reputation for having bug infestations, and potholes are all over the parking lots.

With it’s location seemingly in the middle of nowhere, the scene is pretty dull. If you don’t have a car, you have to rely on the shuttles, and you need to buy your own furniture!

With all these options, it’s important to pick the right living situation for your needs. Cost, transportation, and quality of living are three factors that can be the ultimate decision maker for you. Do your research and put in your applications fast.

Good luck, RIT.

Rochester Institute of Technology