New event to help with off-campus housing

For the first time CNU puts on an off-campus housing fair for students

On Wednesday, Jan. 29, the Office of Residence Life and The Center for Honor Enrichment and Community Standards (CHECS) hosted CNU’s first Off-Campus Housing Resource Fair in the Freeman Center. The fair provided students with the opportunity to attend an informative session that guided students as to what factors they should consider, such as location, responsibilities and initial budget questions, prior to interacting with attending leasing managers of popular local apartments. 

The presentation’s purpose was to educate students on common rental definitions and policies so they would feel confident in beginning their search for off-campus living. 

In particular, the presentation defined different types of leases and security deposits, discussed the importance of lease details and encouraged students to be knowledgeable of all renters policies before signing. A slide entitled Lease Overview emphasized how necessary it is to read the entirety of a lease and ensure awareness of all terms, such as how many months the lease is for, how long the security deposit is held, rules on pets and potential additional fees for pets, understanding early termination and sublease policies, maintenance and repairs responsibilities and payment processes for rent and utilities. 

It was also noted to keep in mind parking and guest expectations, as well as any other individual responsibilities, before signing. Residence life staff highlighted that while provided by CNU, living off campus does not include a mediator for roommate disputes or miscommunications, and that it is important to create a roommate contract in regards to bills, guests, pets, cleaning and furnishing. 

In addition to lease information presented, staff from CHECS spotlighted ways to engage with neighbors appropriately and politely and to be aware of noise levels to avoid a fine or ticket from a Newport News officer or a complaint from those living around you; “The CHECS department works closely with the local neighbors and students who have transitioned off-campus to establish positive relationships and help students understand their responsibilities within their new community,’’ states Ada Badgley, Director of Housing. 

When asked what inspired CNU to initiate an Off-Campus Housing Fair, Badgley commented that “The fair was developed out of a desire to help educate students who are considering moving off campus. We want our students to consider all that living off campus entails.  This inaugural event was designed to get students thinking critically about this option.  We want students to make informed and careful decisions and to utilize the Residence Life and CHECS staff as resources and connectors.” 

The presentation concluded with a video on life in Newport News, and students interacted with representatives from Waterman’s Crossing, Mariners Green, City of Newport News Public Works, Suites Port Warwick and 700 Acqua Luxury Apartments.

~Micaela Moran, Staff Writer~

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