Ask 2: Are students locked in to their housing contracts if classes go virtual due to COVID-19?

In this photo provided by Marilyn Hesler and Syracuse University, a student wearing a mask wheels her belongings up a ramp to move into her dorm, Sunday, Aug. 2, 2020, at Syracuse University in Syracuse, N.Y. (Marilyn Hesler/Syracuse University via AP) (Marilyn Hesler, ©2020 Syracuse University)

HOUSTONAt KPRC 2, we’re dedicated to keeping Houstonians informed. As part of our Ask 2 series, the newsroom will answer your questions about all things Houston.

Question: Are students locked into their housing contracts if classes go virtual due to COVID-19?

Answer: It depends on the university and its policies on student living during COVID-19.

Some Texas universities are waiving fees and requirements for students who chose remote learning or return home before their residential contracts expire.

At the University of Texas at Austin, if a student chooses to cancel their contract due to remote learning, they must contact their Division of Student Affairs department and the Housing and Dining department. Students can have their cancellation fees waived if they choose to take their classes remotely.

If the student did not move in to their residence, they can have their fees refunded.

However, the University of Houston students who choose a “spring-only” housing option after cancelling fall housing will need to pay another $50 application fee, but do not need to pay the $300 prepayment. Keep in mind that you may not get the same residence you originally chose for the fall.

Contact your university’s residential living coordinator for more information.

Do you have a question? Send it our way, and we will try to hunt down an answer.


About the Author:

A graduate of the University of Houston-Downtown, Ana moved to H-Town from sunny southern California in 2015. In 2020, she joined the KPRC 2 digital team as an intern. Ana is a self-proclaimed coffee connoisseur, a catmom of 2, and an aquarium enthusiast. In her spare time, she's an avid video gamer and loves to travel.