The cost of on-campus housing for continuing students has steadily risen the past few years and will continue to rise for the 2019-20 academic year.

Applications for students currently living in Poly Canyon Village (PCV) opened Friday, Feb. 1. For all other students, applications open Tuesday, Feb. 5.

According to the University Housing, a single bedroom apartment in PCV will cost a total of $10,583 for a nine-month lease, including a $500 non-refundable initial payment. A double bedroom apartment will cost $10,019, including the $500 non-refundable initial payment.

This translates to $1,263 per month per person for a single bedroom apartment and $1,192.50 per month per person for a double bedroom, a roughly $100 per month increase. For the 2018-19 academic year, a single bedroom apartment is $1,158.50 per month and a double bedroom is $1,093.75 per person per month. 

“We look at a lot of factors: budget, reserves, programming, staffing needs and maintenance for our older buildings,” University Housing Marketing Coordinator Julia Bluff said. 

A portion of the increase in housing costs will be allocated to grants to subsidize low-income students who will each receive a $1,000 grant toward the academic year’s housing.

Despite the rise in on-campus housing for continuing students, University Housing provides a number of resources to PCV residents, including live-in staff, study spaces, venues to socialize, free washers and dryers and an updated fitness center.

“More than anything, I think we provide students with opportunities to build a student-focused community,” Bluff said. “Students who live on campus tend to be more academically successful and have higher retention than students who live off campus.”

Computer engineering junior Celestine Co said she chose to live in PCV because she does not have a car and wanted to live either on-campus or within walking distance from campus.

“Although housing costs were significantly higher this year for PCV, it would still be cheaper than living in one of the apartments close to campus because I would only be paying for the months I was in San Luis Obispo,” Co said.

Off-campus housing options

When comparing prices between on- and off-campus housing, we looked at the differences between PCV and the Mustang Village Apartments, Murray Station and the Cal Poly Lofts.

Mustang Village apartments will cost roughly $278 more per month than PCV for a single room, at $985 per month for the 2019-20 lease year. The cost of a single room for 2018-19 lease year cost $899.

Double rooms, however will be cheaper at Mustang Village than PCV, at $835 per person per month.

Kinesiology sophomore Brian Alvarado said he chose to live in Mustang Village due to its close proximity to campus compared to other apartment complexes as well as its affordability compared to on-campus housing.

“The [Mustang Village] front office is very friendly and helpful,” Alvarado said. “But there aren’t enough parking permits, and sometimes dryers don’t even work, which can be frustrating because we do have to pay for [laundry].”

Murray Station Apartments, another off-campus housing option for Cal Poly students, is located approximately one mile off campus. According to their website, the complex has a strict noise policy and strives to maintain a quiet atmosphere.

The 2018-19 cost of apartments per month averaged at around $1,708. Next year, Murray Station one bedroom, unfurnished flats will cost $1,325 per month and two bedroom, unfurnished flats will cost $1,775 per month.

Though the apartment complex is farther from campus than Mustang Village, Murray Station provides its residents a study room, bike racks, private yards, walk-in closets and BBQ pits.

Electrical engineering sophomore Jonas Ricasata currently lives in a one-bedroom flat with one roommate in Murray Station Apartments.

“It’s definitely a lot quieter than on campus, mail gets delivered to my mailbox so I don’t have to walk all the way to a community center to get my mail like you would have to on campus and I also live near a bus stop and a hospital,” Ricasata said.

University Housing’s Cal Poly Lofts is located in downtown and is themed for entrepreneurial students. 

During the 2019-20 lease year, single bedrooms will cost $1,336 per month and double bedrooms will cost $1,211 per month. This is about a 15.5 percent increase from the 2018-19 lease year, with single bedrooms priced at $1,129 per month and double bedrooms at $1,104.50 per month.

The Cal Poly Lofts only have space for 35 students and residents are selected based on their interest in entrepreneurship.

There are many more private apartment communities within walking distance of campus, including The SLO Student Living, Valencia Apartments and The Academy.

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1 Comment

  1. Interesting that you don’t point out the SIZE of the apartments. You are comparing apartments built for two tenants to apartments built for one. Many more students wanted true double apartments when they were reasonably priced than they have available. Most are more than willing to share. You need to look at what students actually PAY for their housing. There are many houses and apartments available, even single rooms for far less than $1000 a month, much less $1200, and shared rooms much larger than the CP apartments for far less.

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