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Cornell University

Academic Year Housing License 2024-2025

Academic Year Housing License 2024-2025

Your Housing License is a legal and binding agreement that creates a revocable license for you to occupy your University-assigned housing, subject to these Terms and Conditions for Academic-Year Housing: 2024-2025 (“Terms and Conditions”), The Terms and Conditions are part of your Housing License, and any references to “Housing License” expressly includes all provisions of the Terms and Conditions. Final rates for 2024-2025 housing will be available in March 2024 on the Rates, Amenities & Contracts pages on The rates displayed within the housing portal and license for the fall room selection process are projected rates for the 2024-25 academic year. These are subject to final approval and review by the University President and Board of Trustees. You are signing this license with the knowledge that rates could change. 

The Housing License is not a lease, and does not create a landlord-tenant relationship between you and the University.

Cornell University provides housing accommodations to registered attendees on a revocable license basis only. This License may be immediately revoked for failure to comply with these terms and conditions, for behavior that may endanger public order or property or the personal safety or security of any person, or for any other reason that the University deems good cause, in its sole and absolute discretion. In such event, the University shall not be liable to you for any claims, causes of action, damages, injuries, penalties, costs or expenses of any kind, including (without limitation) attorneys’ fees or any refund of housing fees, whether paid to the University or to a third-party organizer.


Your Housing License is legally binding as of the date you accept your housing assignment in the StarRez system, and continues for the entire Term (see Section IV, Occupancy, below).


Your occupancy of University housing is subject at all times to your compliance with the provisions of the Housing License, the Student Code of Conduct, all applicable University policies (expressly including but not limited to Policy 6.4: Prohibited Bias, Discrimination, Harassment, and Sexual and Related Misconduct), the Community Living Standards, and all applicable local, state, and federal laws and regulations. You also agree to comply with any other rules and regulations as the University may from time to time issue for the welfare of the community or for the general convenience or comfort of residents.


To be eligible for residence in a University residence hall during the academic year, you must be currently registered as full time (minimum 12 credit hours) and maintain active status in a Cornell University academic-year special program. You must also remain current on all financial obligations to the University. The University reserves the right to require you to provide verification of your eligibility status that is satisfactory to the University in its sole discretion.

Individuals required by law to register as a sex offender who wish to occupy University housing or who have a family member or partner who must register as a sex offender who wishes to occupy University housing with the individual must notify Student and Campus Life prior to signing this license. Email for details.

  1. You may occupy your assigned housing beginning on the arrival date and time issued by University Housing, no earlier than 9:00 a.m. on August 19, 2024 through 2:00 p.m. on December 22, 2024 for the fall semester and beginning 9:00 a.m. on January 14, 2025 through 2:00 p.m. on May 18, 2025 (the “Term). These dates are subject to change.
  2. You may not change your occupancy period from these dates without prior written approval from the University. All residents are required to vacate their University housing by 2:00 p.m. on last day of the Term.
  3. Graduating students will be notified by email early in the spring semester of an extended occupancy period through the day after Commencement without additional charges. Students who do not wish to extend their contract through Commencement can notify the Housing Office by February 15, 2025.
  4. You agree to occupy the housing assigned to you. Requests for room changes must be filed with the Office of Housing & Residential Life. Approval of room changes for any University housing are at the discretion of the University, and may result in a fee.
  5. Your assigned housing may only be occupied by you and any roommates assigned to the unit by the University. You may not permit anyone not duly assigned or approved by the University to share any part of your assigned housing or attempt to assign or transfer your assigned housing to anyone else. You may not prevent another student from occupying a shared housing assignment.
  6. If you fail to occupy your assigned housing, or if you vacate your assigned housing during the Term, you continue to be liable for your University housing charges for the entire Term unless you are granted a cancellation of your Housing License as provided in Section VI, License Cancellations.
  7. You may request a limited extension of the occupancy period, which the Office of Housing & Residential Life may grant or deny at its sole discretion. Extensions of the occupancy period will only be granted in exceptional circumstances. There will be a daily charge of fifty-two dollars ($52) for occupancy before or after the occupancy period stated above.
  1. You agree to pay all required fees, charges, and penalties associated with your assigned housing.
  2. All initial housing charges, and other fees, charges and penalties related to your assigned housing, including, but not limited to, cancellation fees, room change fees, and any charges for losses, damages, and other costs you cause the University to incur will be charged to your University Bursar account. A security and key deposit will not be required.
  3. The Office of the Bursar’s policies on payment of finance charges for late payments and other penalties for failure to make timely payments apply. See
  4. Meal Plan Requirements: All students living in undergraduate on-campus housing are required to participate in a meal plan and will be automatically enrolled. Students living in Alice Cook House (Boldt Tower, Boldt Hall, North Baker Hall, Baker Tower, Cook House, Carl Becker House, Hans Bethe House (Bethe House and McFaddin Hall), William Keeton House, and Flora Rose House (Founders Hall, Lyon Hall, Mennen Hall, South Baker Hall, Rose House) are required to have the House Meal Plan designated specifically for the House System, and will be automatically enrolled.

1. The Housing License is binding for the entire Term. The University may permit you to cancel your Housing License under the following circumstances:

  1. If you withdraw or take a voluntary leave of absence from the University during the Term;
  2. If you are granted a medical withdrawal or leave, or an academic internship, graduation or study in absentia during the Term;
  3. If the University determines that there are adequate other grounds for cancellation.

You may request a cancellation by submitting a written petition in the housing portal. The University retains sole and absolute discretion over all cancellation determinations. If cancellation is allowed, you will be charged a per diem rate for each day you occupied your assigned housing. You will be required to vacate your assigned housing and turn in your keys within 24 hours of the effective date of cancellation.

2. Contract releases for any other reason than those listed in above may be granted, but only under exceptional circumstances. Contract releases due to exceptional circumstances will be determined by, and are at the sole discretion of, the Office of Housing & Residential Life. All approved contract releases due to exceptional circumstances will result in a cancellation fee of $800. You will receive a prorated refund of any prepaid housing fees, less any applicable fees or charges.

3. Fall semester. Students who have signed Housing Contracts must notify the Office of Housing & Residential Life by July 1, 2024 if they do not plan to attend the University for fall semester. Notice received after July 1, 2024 will result in an $800 contract cancellation fee.

4. Spring semester. Students who have signed Housing Contracts must notify the Office of Housing & Residential Life by December 1, 2024 if they do not plan to attend the University for spring semester. Notice received after December 1, 2024 will result in an $800 contract cancellation fee.


1. The University may immediately revoke your Housing License, reassign you to other University housing, and/or pursue disciplinary action in its sole discretion, if:

  1. You fail to comply with terms and conditions of the Community Living Standards and/or the Housing License, including, but not limited to, the requirements of Section II, Compliance;
  2. You engage in or threaten acts or behavior that in the University’s sole opinion, may endanger public order or property, threaten the personal safety or security of yourself or others (by acts of physical or mental harassment, self-harm, or other means) or disrupt other students;
  3. You refuse an evaluation by Counseling and Psychological Services staff, following your hospitalization for psychiatric reasons;
  4. You cease to meet the eligibility requirements in Section III;
  5. You make a materially false statement in your housing application; or
  6. For other good cause as determined in the University’s sole discretion.

If your Housing License is revoked under this section, you will continue to be liable for all housing charges and fees for the entire Term; no refund will be provided. You will also be charged an $800 revocation fee. The University also may refuse to allow you to occupy any University housing in the future.

2.  The University further reserves the right to terminate your Housing License or reassign you to other University housing based on:

  1. Damage to your assigned housing that results in it being unfit for occupancy, in the University’s sole opinion;
  2. To prepare for or to conduct renovation, repair, construction, or demolition;
  3. To respond to unforeseen circumstances or emergencies, including, but not limited to, epidemics or other public health and safety reasons.
  4. If you are not able to occupy your assigned housing safely due to a disability and no reasonable accommodation will permit you to do so safely.
  5. If your Housing License is revoked under this section, you may be entitled to a pro rata refund of your housing charges paid as of the date you vacate, in the University’s sole discretion.

3. You will be provided with written notice of any revocation of your Housing License or reassignment to alternative housing. You are required to vacate your assigned housing as of the date specified in said notice, in compliance with the Check-Out requirements in Section IX.

4. If you are reassigned to different University housing in lieu of License revocation, for any reason, you will remain liable for all housing charges and fees for the entire Term. You will not be entitled to moving expenses or any other kind of compensation or refund.


The University reserves the right to enter your assigned housing at any time, without notice, including but not limited to in times of emergency; to make repairs; for housekeeping purposes; to inspect for compliance with health, fire, or building codes; enforcement of University and University Housing policies or regulations (including Community Living Standards); for law enforcement purposes; or for any other health, safety, or security purpose as determined by the University in its sole discretion.

1.  Check-In and Check-Out Requirements
  1. You are responsible for documenting any damage to your assigned room/furniture/etc. by completing maintenance requests at check-in and during the academic year.
  2. When checking out, you must remove all your personal property and refuse, and leave your assigned housing empty and as clean as when you checked in. Charges for additional cleaning required, removal of abandoned personal property or refuse, and for any loss or damage you have caused will be billed to your University Bursar account. Personal property not removed within 24 hours of check-out shall be deemed abandoned and may be disposed of by the University in its sole discretion.
  3. A fee of $52 per hour will be assessed for every hour or fraction thereof that you remain in your assigned housing (or the residence hall) past the closing time unless a written request for exception has been received and approved by the Office of Housing & Residential Life. Check- out is not completed until you have vacated your assigned housing and residence hall and have turned in all keys.
2.  Keys, Cards, and Lock-Outs
  1. You may request that a staff member give you access to your assigned housing. You may be charged a $5 fee. You must report lost keys to the Service Center and file a report with CU Police within 24 hours. You will be charged for replacement lock core and keys. More information pertaining to this topic can be found in the Community Living Standards.
  2. If you lose your ID card, you must report it as a “lost card” with the University Registrar’s Office. You must borrow a temporary building card for access into your residence hall, and you will be charged $25 if you do not return this card within 72 hours.
3.  University Property
  1. You are liable for any damage or loss you cause to your assigned housing (including furnishings), the residence hall, or any other University facility. The costs of such damage or loss will be added to your University Bursar bill. Damage or loss must be reported promptly to your residence staff.
  2. You may not remove University-provided furnishings from your assigned housing without the written permission of the Office of Housing & Residential Life. If you do, you will be charged to have them moved back to their proper location.
  3. Unauthorized removal of furnishings from common areas or from the building constitutes theft, and may subject you to disciplinary action in addition to the University’s other remedies under the Housing License.
  4. Storage space for University-owned room furniture and/or students’ personal belongings is not available.
  5. In addition, if common areas are damaged and the responsible parties are not identified, the University reserves the right to hold all residents of the floor, unit, hall or complex responsible for the cost of repair and/or replacement of damaged items.

For general expectations on living in on-campus housing, please see the Community Living Standards.

4.  Commercial Activities

No commercial business or activity may be conducted in or from any University housing. Using residence telephones, internet and wireless connections for profit-making purposes is prohibited. If you violate this provision and the University incurs tax liability as a result, then in addition to University’s other rights and remedies under this Housing License, you will be responsible for the costs of such taxes.

  1. Telephone and Data services are provided by Cornell Information Technologies (CIT). Local telephone service may be provided in each student room, apartment, or suite on a fee for service basis, except in some small residences. Long distance costs are your responsibility. Misuse of pin codes issued by the University can result in disciplinary action.
  2. All residential facilities wired for data service have the base charge for network connectivity included in the housing rate. Additional charges will be assessed for excessive Internet bandwidth usage. Please check with CIT for details.
  3. Television service, if available, must be arranged by you with the local cable service provider.
  1. Students residing in the undergraduate halls are prohibited from having animals in their rooms with the exception of fish that are in tanks no larger than 10 gallons. If you violate this condition or the University Pets on Campus Policy, the animal may be confiscated and you may be subject to disciplinary action, in addition to the University’s other remedies under the Housing License.
  2. Service animals (as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act) are permitted in University housing.
  3. Emotional support animals (ESAs) are permitted in University housing if approved by Student Disability Services as a reasonable accommodation for a disability.
  4. Residents with service animals or approved emotional support animals must comply with Policy 2.8: Pets on Campus.
  1. The University has an approved vendor that rents refrigerators and microfridges. Only microfridges from the approved vendor are permitted. Minifridges may be purchased and brought to campus, provided they meet required specifications. Full-size refrigerators are provided in the Townhouses.
  2. Fire-safety requirements prohibit cooking in University housing, except for when using approved appliances. Approved appliances include microfridges rented by the University’s approved vendor, and other small appliances with self-contained, thermostatically controlled heating elements with automatic shut-off features. You may not use any non-thermostatically controlled electrical cooking appliance in any University housing and any such appliances shall be confiscated.
  3. During any official University recess in which the housing units are closed for more than four days, you must remove all food from your refrigerator, disconnect it, and leave the door open. All other electrical devices must be turned off during any official University recess.
  4. You may use electrical devices such as radios, computers, printers, hair dryers, razors, and clocks provided they are plugged into outlets in your room and do not exceed the amperage limits of the circuits in the room. Spider lamps and halogen lamps are prohibited.
  5. Constructing computer connections between rooms is prohibited as is running an electrical cord from your assigned housing to a corridor outlet. You may not splice internal cables.

All undergraduate halls and graduate housing facilities have online coinless laundry systems that use one of two systems. For more information, visit All funds must be used before the end of the License period. No refunds will be issued.

  1. On-campus housing facilities are equipped with fire suppression systems and/or sprinkler systems in all residential rooms.
  2. You and your guests must immediately evacuate the building and follow all residence staff directions if a fire alarm sounds. You are responsible for knowing where the fire alarm boxes are located in your building. Fire extinguishers are for use by trained personnel only.
  3. The University is subject to fire and safety inspections by various agencies. If the University incurs a fine as a result of your failure to comply with the terms of your Housing License or with any request from residence staff or other University staff, you will be responsible for payment of the fine.
  4. You must not store hazardous, explosive or flammable substances in any portion of University housing. The use or storage of candles, incense, and any other open flames in your assigned housing is prohibited.
  5. You may not hang anything from sprinkler pipes or any part of the fire sprinkler system.
  6. You must not activate false alarms, interfere with the proper functioning of the fire-alarm system, or tamper with or remove smoke detectors, fire hoses, extinguishers, or fire-fighting equipment. Violators may be subject to disciplinary action under the Student Code of Conduct or state or local law.
  7. Residents of Townhouses are responsible for weekly inspection and testing of the carbon monoxide detectors located in your room/apartment, in accordance with the instructions provided by the Department of Environment, Health and Safety. You are required to document weekly testing per instructions you will receive upon checking in to your room/apartment. Failure to comply with this requirement will result in fines, referral to the Office of Student Conduct & Community Standards, and/or termination of your Housing License.
  1. You must keep exterior entrances to residence halls locked at all times. Temporary exceptions may be authorized by an SCL staff member.
  2. You may not offer access to any residence hall or locked building to strangers or unauthorized persons. Residents purposely violating security policies by propping exterior doors or modifying latches may be subject to disciplinary action.
  3. You are responsible for maintaining the security of your assigned housing. Your assigned housing should be kept locked when you are not present. All windows in unoccupied space must be closed and latched.
  4. You may not alter or replace the present locks or other security devices or install additional locks or other security devices.
  5. Neither you nor your guests are permitted on roofs, ledges, or overhangs. Neither you nor your guests are permitted to climb the exteriors of any University building.

Soliciting, canvassing, and leafleting are generally not permitted in any University housing. SCL may grant permission if requests are made in advance. Petitioning is not permitted in undergraduate residence halls except in certain cases with prior notification to the residence hall leadership organization. {See House Rules for additional information}.

  1. The University is not liable or otherwise responsible, directly or indirectly, for any loss or damage to your personal property or vehicle occurring anywhere on University property, whether caused by fire, water, steam, the elements, insufficient heat, loss or surges of electricity, theft, the actions of third persons, or any other reason. Your personal property is not covered by University insurance. The University strongly encourages all occupants to obtain renter’s insurance.
  2. In the event of a court determination of any University liability to you in connection with this Housing License, the aggregate amount of damages to be paid by the University shall not exceed the sum you paid under this Housing License.

The University assumes no responsibility for failure to perform any terms or conditions of this Housing License due to fire, earthquake, flood, act of nature, weather events, strikes, work stoppages or other labor disturbances, riots or civil commotions, litigation, war or other acts of any foreign nation, terrorism, epidemics, pandemics, power of governments or governmental agencies or authorities, national emergencies, or any other cause that is beyond the control of the University, regardless whether such a cause is similar or dissimilar to the foregoing examples, and regardless as to whether the subject event or cause was conceivable or foreseeable.

  1. Execution of the Academic-Year Housing License is not a commitment of admission to or continued enrollment in the University.
  2. Any waiver by the University of its rights under this Housing License shall not be deemed a continuing waiver.
  3. If any provision of this Housing License shall be found to be invalid, the remaining provisions hereof shall continue in full force and effect.
  4. This Housing License represents the complete agreement between you and the University regarding your University housing, and supersedes any prior contracts or understandings, whether oral or written. It may not be amended in any way without the prior written permission of the University in each instance.
  5. The Housing License is subject to the laws of the State of New York, without regard to conflicts of laws or principles. You agree to submit to the jurisdiction of the federal and state courts in Tompkins County, New York State, for the resolution of any disputes arising under the Housing License.
  6. In any action, suit, or proceeding in any jurisdiction arising out of or relating to this Housing License, you and the University each knowingly and intentionally, to the greatest extent permitted by applicable law, irrevocably and expressly waive forever trial by jury.