Off-Campus Housing

Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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College Sophomore

Off-Campus Housing: I have not lived off-campus, so I am unable to make an accurate review.

3 College Freshman

Off-Campus Housing: Its whatever, only a few students live off campus and I'd say they are fairly isolated. Mary Lyons is a whole other story.

College Freshman

Off-Campus Housing: Not Really Real – Something like 97% of students live on campus all four years.

3 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Housing: Very Sparse – There is not much off-campus housing, partly because so many people are housed on campus. There are a few apartments in the village of Swarthmore, and one three story building with very bad cleanliness and amenities that is cheaper than on-campus housing. Only a very small percentage of people choose to live off-campus, as it is possible to stay on-campus all four years.

3 College Junior

Off-Campus Housing: Save Money – You're required to live on campus your first two semesters. After that, a small percentage of Swatties do move off campus. Sometimes, it's for social reasons. For example, a lot of the hipsters/their friends live in this off-campus building called "The Barn". A lot of these people also moved because off-campus living is cheaper, and that's why people, in general, live off campus. Part of it is that you're not automatically on the meal plan anymore, but meal plan aside, I think it's also inherently cheaper living off campus as well.

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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 1206th
    Best Off-Campus Housing Options

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Sudarshan Gopaladesikan
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Math and Engineering
View all previous student authors

Not a lot of Swarthmore students live off campus, and the few who do often get left out of campus activities, either because they are unaware of them or they are too lazy to make the trip back to campus. The “Swarthmore bubble” can seem pretty oppressive at times, so some students live off campus to escape the general campus scene and to live more independently. Another reason is to have a different social experience and pay less than living on campus. However, the campus is by no means commuter-friendly, so students who do live off campus tend to live very close.

It’s usually cheaper to live off campus than in the dorms, but despite the affordability of housing around Swarthmore, most Swatties live on campus. The reasons for this are that the dorms are quite adequate and provide a welcoming social environment, and Swarthmore is a strictly residential campus. So, students who are considering living off campus often choose instead to live on campus so they don’t miss out on the Swarthmore experience, even if it means living “in the bubble."

Facts & Statistics

Undergrads Living Off Campus
Freshmen Living Off Campus
Popular Areas
  • Dartmouth House Apartments
  • Greylock Apartments
  • Swarthmore Apartments
  • Units in the Ville
Average Rents
  • 1 BR: $895
  • 2 BR: $1,100
  • 3 BR: $1,800
Did You Know?
Students are required to live on campus their first two semesters. After that, if they wish to move off campus, they must fill out the Statement of Intent to Live Off Campus.

Student Polls

Rate the off-campus housing on the following topics    Based on 18 responses

Very poor
  • Availability
  • Cost
  • Ease of obtaining/process
  • Landlords
  • Parking
  • Proximity to campus
  • Proximity to public transportation
  • Proximity to shopping
  • Quality
  • Safety
  • Variety

How helpful is the school in helping students find off-campus housing?    Based on 17 responses

  • 24% Extremely helpful.
  • 41% Somewhat helpful.
  • 35% Not very helpful.
  • 0% The school does not allow students to live off campus.

What is the off-campus housing selection like near campus and is it worth it?    Based on 17 responses

  • 12% Totally worth it. It's easy to find a place, and prices are reasonable.
  • 41% Price and availability can vary, but the added freedom is still worth it.
  • 18% High prices and/or limited choices keep most students on campus.
  • 29% Not worth the hassle or expense. Everyone just lives on campus.
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