The most asked questions about on-campus living.
If you need additional assistance, please contact the Office of Housing and Residential Life at 864-503-5422 or by email.
Who is required to live on campus?
All newly admitted, full-time, first-year students are required to live on campus during the fall and spring of their freshman year. A student may apply, through the Housing and Residential Life office, to be exempt from this policy if one of the following applies:
- Student will be living with their parent or legal guardian and will be residing within 50 miles of the Housing and Residential Life office
- Student is married
- Student has dependent(s), is a parent or has legal guardianship of a sibling
- Student is 20 of age or older by the date of fall opening
Any student requesting exemption from campus housing must complete a Freshman Campus Housing Exemption form online to be exempted from housing as well as supply the required documentation. When you click the link, then click STUDENT LOG IN and then click the three white lines to access FORMS.
Research indicates that students who live on campus and become involved on campus tend to not only make better grades but also persist and graduate.
How do I apply to live on campus?
Log into the Self-Service Carolina website and choose Housing Services to apply online. Make sure you select the Upstate Campus.
Is there a fee to apply to live on campus?
In order for your housing application to become active, you must have already been accepted by the University, and your application must have been accompanied by $150. $50 of this is considered a non-refundable application fee. The remaining $100 will be your Advance Room Payment (ARP), which will be applied to your fall housing charges. Please note that once your application has been accepted and processed, there is a $100 fee for failure to notify Housing and Residential Life about cancellation of contract. If you cancel prior to June 1, you will receive 100% of your ARP. If you cancel after June 1, there will be no refund of your ARP.
Is my application to live on campus considered a contract?
Yes. When you submit your application, you are contracting with us to live on campus for two semesters (one if you are graduating in the fall or applying in the spring). If you should break your housing contract, you will be subject to a cancellation fee. There is a 40 percent charge for your spring housing fee for not returning to campus housing after the fall semester. Request to cancel your housing contract must be placed at a Contract Release Request Meeting. Please note, if you are a December graduate, it is very important that you contact our office at least one month prior to graduation.
My friend is also going to attend USC Upstate. How can we request to live together?
On your online application, which is accessed through Self-Service Carolina, there is an option to list another student as your roommate. You will be asked for their email address. We go to great lengths to make sure roommate requests are honored, if at all possible. However, for various reasons, the students may not be placed together. Please see the Room Assignments page for more information on roommate requests. Please remember, once you submit your housing application, you no longer have the ability to change your roommate preference online. To do so after submitting your application, please contact the Housing Office at email@example.com.
How do I get a single room?
Single rooms are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. This is determined by when the student pays their deposit. The earlier you pay your deposit, the better your chances of getting a single room. Please keep in mind that some students will pay their deposit as early as 10 months prior to coming to campus. Also, if two or more students become eligible for single rooms and would like to be in the same suite, they should follow the procedure as described above. However, when one of the pairs is on a waiting list for a single, they must remain there until their name reaches the top. Even if they have been requested as a suite-mate by someone in a single, they will not be given the space until it is their turn. In these situations, the student(s) in the single may want to re-consider having a single room and may want to opt out to a double room so that they can be with their friend.
What is included in my room?
USC Upstate offers a variety of living quarters. All offer wireless internet access, and all utilities.
For our freshman students living in the Palmetto House and Magnolia House, there are single and double room options. Each offers a bed with mattress, window treatments, desk with carrel, chair, wardrobe, and two dresser drawers. In the single bedroom suite, you will find a full-size sofa, upholstered chair, end table and micro-fridge (this is a microwave, freezer and refrigerator all in one unit). The only cooking allowed in the Palmetto and Magnolia Houses is in a microwave. In the double suite, the only difference is that instead of a full-size sofa you will find a love seat. Both suites share a bathroom area where the shower is in one room, the toilet is in another, with two sinks in an outer area. Please refer to the floor plan of the Palmetto House and Magnolia House on the housing page.
We also offer The Villas for upperclassmen, which is a traditional apartment-style facility. There are single and double room options. Each unit has two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a living room and a full kitchen. In the bedroom, there is a desk, chair, two dressers, window treatments, and closet with shelves for folded items. The living room/dining room has a sofa, love seat, and two stools for dining at the kitchen bar. The kitchen has a full-size refrigerator, stove, microwave oven, disposal and numerous cabinets.
Please note the fourth floor of Palmetto is partially used as a transfer student community when the Villa apartments reach capacity.
What should I bring with me and what should I leave behind?
When you come to the University, you should bring linens (towels, sheets, pillows, blankets, curtains, etc.), an alarm clock, study lamp, iron and laundry hamper or basket. Students may also want to consider bringing a small rug or carpet, vacuum cleaner (in The Villas), radio/stereo, TV, computer, pictures, posters, etc. It is always a good idea to coordinate with your roommate and suite-mates as to what each of you are bringing. For instance, four TVs may be too much for your room.
Also keep in mind that while you may each have an additional refrigerator (4.2 cu.ft) or smaller, those will make the room warmer. Refrigerators may NOT be stored under a bed.
Visit our table at Orientation for a more comprehensive list.
As for those items you should not bring, please understand that this is not an all-inclusive list. Pets are strictly prohibited. Other prohibited items include command strips, waterbeds, open coil cooking units (including “George Foreman” style grills in the Palmetto and Magnolia Houses), candles, incense, halogen lights and heating units. If you have any questions as to whether or not you may bring an item, please contact the Office of Housing and Residential Life at 864-503-5422.
How do I select a Living Learning Community?
Beginning in 2021-2022, we will offer several living learning communities (or theme housing options) for students. Visit the application portal in SSC to review the offerings and make your selection:
- Extended Quiet Hours
- Alcohol/Tobacco Free
- TRIO/First Generation
- Civic Engagement/Leadership/Community Service
When will I receive my room and roommate assignment and my bill?
We begin to make room and roommate assignments in May. Although most of these are completed by the end of the month, we do not publish the room assignments until July. The reason we do this is because some students will change their mind about their roommate selection or building selection, so if we published it any earlier, many of you would receive false information. In July, you can find your room assignment by going into Self Service Carolina (my.sc.edu) and going to the link for the housing application. Your room assignment will appear just under that link on July 19th. As for your bill, housing charges will appear on your account in mid July.
Do I have to have a meal plan? If so, what is the minimum plan?
Yes. All students living on campus must be enrolled in a meal plan. For more information on meal plans, please visit Dining Services.
What if my plans change and I am unable to attend USC Upstate or live on campus?
If your plans change and you are unable to attend USC Upstate, you must cancel your housing application in writing. To do so, you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. This is the only method by which cancellation requests are accepted.
In order to receive a refund of your $100 advance room payment, you must cancel (in writing) by June 1.
If you do not cancel your housing application by Opening Day (August 14), and do not move in, a $100 “no show fee" will be assessed to your University account.
What do I do if I require special accommodation?
Please contact the office of Disability Services at (864) 503-5199.