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Looking for housing with coronavirus situation


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I finished finding housing before my destination city had a stay-at-home order. 

I had not planned on being able to visit in person anyway as I am far away now, but at that time, I was able to get a virtual tour via Facetime. This may still be possible in some locations?

Other than that, good luck and I have to think that many are in the same boat.

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Facetime tours are becoming common. My partner and I are moving in May (though not for grad school), and have been preparing for the likelihood that in-person apartment tours may not be possible in many instances. 

If you're looking to move in somewhere several months from now (like late summer/early fall), you could always consider putting a pause on the housing search for now and seeing if conditions improve.

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Some of the places I have been in contact with have offered virtual tours of the rentals. They also seem to be much more responsive than they were prior to the outbreak. My biggest concern is selling my current home. On the bright side, it is giving me the time to address some of the cosmetic issues that will make it more marketable when this passes!

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I’m worried about the same thing. I accepted an offer for a PhD program in Ohio, but I currently live in California and my lease ends in June. I’ve done some virtual tours and would ideally want to sign a lease to begin in June so I can move directly there... but I realize that fall semester may end up being remote too. If it is, it seems like a waste to pay for rent and I could just live with my parents in Oregon during that time. So right now I’m just waiting to see what happens. Anyone else have the same feelings about fall?

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On 4/1/2020 at 2:25 AM, hopefulastro said:

I’m worried about the same thing. I accepted an offer for a PhD program in Ohio, but I currently live in California and my lease ends in June. I’ve done some virtual tours and would ideally want to sign a lease to begin in June so I can move directly there... but I realize that fall semester may end up being remote too. If it is, it seems like a waste to pay for rent and I could just live with my parents in Oregon during that time. So right now I’m just waiting to see what happens. Anyone else have the same feelings about fall?

I feel the same way. Right now is when I need to decide and the possibility that I might relocate across country just to stay inside and take online classes is making it very difficult. 

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In the same exact situation as you are. I actually just signed a lease for an apartment yesterday. No amount of pictures or virtual tours will give me reassurance that I picked the right place, but I'm afraid I didn't have much of an option! If your school has an active reddit, make a post asking if anyone has experience living in the places you are interested in. I did, and I received prompt responses that were more enlightening than any information a landlord will likely give. If you haven't done so already, make sure to go on google street view around the apartment to get the vibe of the area.

Edited by guckymeister
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18 minutes ago, guckymeister said:

In the same exact situation as you are. I actually just signed a lease for an apartment yesterday. No amount of pictures or virtual tours will give me reassurance that I picked the right place, but I'm afraid I didn't have much of an option! If your school has an active reddit, make a post asking if anyone has experience living in the places you are interested in. I did, and I received prompt responses that were more enlightening than any information a landlord will likely give. If you haven't done so already, make sure to go on google street view around the apartment to get the vibe of the area.

Searching school reddit pages is great advice. I'd especially recommend searching there for anyone considering on-campus/graduating housing. That way you get a better idea of their quality and comparative cost with off-campus living. 

Do you mind if I ask you where you're relocating?

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I think in this particular case it's probably safer to go with university-affiliated housing. Even if it's more expensive, or known to have subpar conditions/amenities, you know who you're dealing with and the university's office is not going to disappear on you or go bankrupt or whatever. If the school decides to go remote for fall, they're more likely to be flexible with you breaking the lease than the average landlord. You'll only live there for one year and then you can move somewhere you love next summer.

And just think about all the international students in all of history who never get to do in-person tours before signing their first lease in the US. You probably know a few. The vast majority do fine. You can in fact contact agents who specialize in leasing to international students, since they're more familiar with the virtual touring format.

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Unfortunately some schools do not have grad housing. Looking at getting a place nearby and then using the stipend to pay for apartment whether or not classes are online in Fall. Wouldnt break lease to go home because they are almost always year long leases and if school closes for Fall may reopen in Spring so need to have a place available if that happens.

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm struggling with this too!

My partner and I currently live in MN with his parents and were hoping to look at apartments in Chicago in early July to move in August 1st. I'm supposed to start my PhD program at DePaul in early September. However, if the first quarter is online, there's no need for me to waste thousands on Chicago rent bc I wouldn't need to live there until early January.

We were planning on selling our car in June/July as well but are waiting because we may need it if we decide to stay with his parents.

Time will tell. I'm hoping that universities make decisions in June but I know it will be difficult for them to predict 3+ months in advance so who knows.

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I start a phd program in the fall. I’m planning to move across states and was also considering staying where I am if fall courses end up being online. Now, I realized that I need to move because I intend to establish residency and will need to live there for a year in order to qualify for in state tuition the following year. My funding covers out of state tuition for my first year, but won’t the following years. Just an FYI, if anyone else is in the same boat. 

Edited by SchoolPsyPHD
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I am also in the same boat. I moved where I am now in September for my PhD. To be part of the "academic and social life" of the university. Now I don't have that anymore, so there's no reason for me to stay here. So I want to move back home, especially since I am done with coursework until the end of my PhD. But I'm very scared of moving due to the pandemic, and I don't feel comfortable with the idea of virtual tours of appartments. At the same time, the situation with the pandemic is less worse where I am currently living than my hometown. 

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Plus, I don't have a driver's license. So I need to pay a professional mover to move a studio appartement which is sooooo expensive for what I have (I live on my own). I don't want to expose my family and friends to possibly catching the virus by helping me out with moving out.

 

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