Housing in Ithaca goes quickly, so you will want to begin your search soon. Your housing options include:

University Housing

Limited university graduate housing is available. On-campus housing consists of apartments and townhouses located on or just off campus. New students may apply for university housing for Summer 2015 and the 2015-2016 academic year. To research the available options and submit an application, visit Cornell's Graduate and Professional Student Housing Program.

Note: when applying for graduate housing, you should complete the forms labeled New Student (for those without a university-issued NetID)

Off Campus Rental Housing

Most students at Cornell choose to live in apartments located in houses or apartment complexes. The apartments can range from a studio to an eight-bedroom apartment. Utilities and heating are not usually included in the rent so be sure to ask. The local utility company, NYSEG (1-800-572-1111) can provide information about utility costs.

We have provided:

  • Major Rental Neighborhoods - an outline of neighborhoods where our students rent apartments
  • 2015 DJ Housing Guide - Most apartments are rented through independent landlords or property managers and we have included in this guide information from current students in these locations, contact information, etc. 

Also, there are offices, businesses and publications that maintain apartment listings including:


Buying vs. Renting

If you are considering purchasing a home or a condo, please note the following:

  • Local realtors recommend that buyers pre-qualify for a mortgage before looking at a property. Most buyers use local banks for mortgages (as opposed to internet mortgages) because New York State property law is based on the English system whereby attorneys close sales, as opposed to title insurance companies.
  • Average time from the acceptance of an offer until closing the property (taking ownership) is two to three months. It is difficult to close a sale involving a mortgage in less than seven weeks. If you plan to buy, you will need to schedule your buying trip with enough lead time.
  • With a two year stay in the area, resale will be a high priority. Ithaca City School District is broken down by elementary school. Anyone considering buying a home vs. renting should consider these factors as well as the cost of the home. Any realtor should be able to help you make those comparisons. An additional resource is www.realtor.com, a website that will allow you to search for all listed homes in the Ithaca area (search by zip code 14850).

Current students also recommend homes.com and homegain.com.

To compare tax assessments for a neighborhood, try http://www.zillow.com/.