A female student walks past Tigress Residence Hall on the Penn State Behrend campus.

How to Get a Contract

Penn State Housing and Food Services uses eLiving, an online system, to manage Housing Contracts and the Campus Meal Plan.

While all students use eLiving, there are separate processes for incoming first-year students and current Penn State students. Housing is guaranteed for all first-year students. Returning students participate in a lottery process; though the lottery is random and demand varies from year to year, Penn State has for the last few years been able to offer an on-campus living option to all students who requested housing.

You can find more information about the processes on eLiving as well as the links below.

First-Year Students
Returning Students
Change of Campus Students
Transfer Students

First-Year Students

(Incoming freshmen new to Penn State)

First-year students accept their offer of admission by logging on to MyPennState. Because first-year students are required to live on campus, accepting a Housing and Food Services (HFS) Contract is part of the process of accepting the offer of admission. When accepting, students pay a $230 non-refundable general deposit fee as well as a $100 non-refundable housing reservation fee, for a total of $330. Then you must agree to the Terms, Conditions, and Regulations of the HFS Contract and the housing and financial statements. After completing those steps, you'll have successfully accepted your offer of admission and the HFS Contract. A confirmation email will be sent to the address on file.

The Campus Meal Plan will automatically be defaulted to a level two; to modify the meal plan level or add housing preferences (building, roommate, etc.), log on to eLiving. You can change your preferences until May 15.

Returning Students

(Current Penn State students)

Current Penn State students who are interested in living on campus must follow the established timeline for requesting Housing, viewing invitations, and accepting Housing Contract offers. View returning student process FAQs.

Request Housing:

  1. Log on to www.eLiving.psu.edu with your Penn State Access ID and password.
  2. Under the HFS Contracts icon, select ‘Request Housing’.  
  3. Choose the campus and contract period. 
  4. Select the blue ‘Request Now’ button. 
  5. The page will refresh with a confirmation stating: ‘Success!  Your housing request for Penn State <campus> has been submitted.’

View an Invitation and Generate your Contract:

  1. Log on to www.eLiving.psu.edu and under the HFS Contracts icon, select View Invitation. 
  2. Select your invitation to view available housing options.  Not all options may be available based on when you are invited into the process.
  3. Select the housing option you desire and click ‘Continue’.
  4. (Optional) Add a friend’s Penn State Access ID who you want to receive a HFS Contract offer and click ‘Continue’. Not all housing options allow for a roommate.
  5. Review your selections and click ‘Create Contract’ to generate the HFS Contract for your selected housing option.  If you added a roommate, this student will also be offered the HFS Contract.

Accept Your Contract:

  1. Select the Shopping Cart icon and view the offer.
  2. Click the ‘Begin Acceptance Process’ button to view and read the HFS Contract and Terms, Conditions, and Regulations (TCRs).
  3. Check the box to indicate that you have read and agree to abide by the TCRs. 
  4. Type your name to electronically sign the HFS Contract.
  5. Click the ‘Accept Contract’ button.

Once you have accepted the Housing Contract, you are legally bound to that contract for the fall and spring semesters. You may not cancel the contract after it has been submitted.

Making modifications: after you accept your Housing Contract, you may make changes to your housing preferences and meal plan selection until the modification deadline.

Waitlist

Students who did not participate in the process but are interested in living on campus can Request Housing through eLiving at any time. If housing is available, a Contract Offer will be made to the student; if housing is full, the student will be directed to the Waitlist. Contract Offers will be made to Waitlist students as spaces become available. Adding your name to the Waitlist does not guarantee that you will receive an offer for an HFS Contract.

Current students considering a Change of Campus to another Penn State campus

Students considering a Change of Campus should first initiate the request through the Change of Campus contact in the Registrar’s office. If you are interested in living on campus, you must participate in the eLiving Housing Contract System during the established timeline.

If you receive a Housing Contract offer for a campus that is not your current campus of enrollment, this does not imply that your Change of Campus has been or will be approved. Accepting the Housing Contract offer does not guarantee that your Change of Campus will be approved.

We highly recommend that you submit a request for both campuses – your current campus of enrollment and your expected Change of Campus. If you are offered a Housing Contract for one or both campuses, you should accept both offers, even if your Change of Campus has not yet been approved. Once it is determined which campus you will attend, it is your responsibility to cancel the Housing Contract for the campus you will not be attending by contacting Housing and Food Services.

You can find more information about Change of Campus at www.changeofcampus.psu.edu.

Transfer Students

Students transferring to Penn State from another university can indicate interest in on-campus living when they accept their offer of admission. If housing is available, simply agree to the Terms, Conditions, and Regulations of the HFS Contract and the housing and financial statements then continue through the admission process. After completing those steps, you'll have successfully accepted your offer of admission and the HFS Contract. A confirmation email will be sent to the address on file.

If housing is full, transfer students have the option to add their name to the Waitlist when they accept their offer. They can also do so after accepting their offer by logging on to eLiving and selecting Request Housing.