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Off Campus

How to Find a Roommate

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Having a compatible roommate that you can trust is essential to a pleasant living experience.

We advise students to choose their roommates carefully. Let your potential roommates know your habits, what is important to you, and your expectations for day-to-day living (cleanliness, security, noise, etc.). Plan ahead and start looking for a roommate as soon as you figure out what your housing situation will be. Also, make sure that you both sign the lease or rental agreement so that you are not the only one responsible for the apartment or house.

Living with roommates is one way to share the expense of housing. International students looking for a roommate are welcome to bring flyers to GEO and post them in the front office. You may also send an email to GEO with a detailed description of your housing situation and your contact information and we will forward it to the international student listserve for other international students to access.

Searching for Housing

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Talking with people at UNM (students, staff at GEO and/or people in your academic department) is one of the best ways to find housing and get an idea of the different types of housing near campus. Another good resource for finding housing is the Internet, e.g. organizations that provide online information on rental listings, neighborhood information (crime rates), and other community insights.

UNM Off-Campus Housing

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Off Campus Housing: This website includes houses, rooms, and apartments for rent in Albuquerque. All listings provide information about rent, location, and a detailed description of the property.

UNM Daily Lobo

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Daily Lobo website: This free campus newspaper can be a useful resource when looking for housing or a roommate. It offers listings of houses and apartments available for rent.

Craigslist

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Craigslist Website: Local classifieds and forums - community moderated, and largely free. Besides housing, you can find there just about anything. However, if you decide to use Craigslist be aware that you are communicating with a stranger. Please take the same common sense precautions online as you would offline.

Trulia

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Trulia Website: This website provides information not only on renting but also on local crime statistics, transportation, and local amenities. You can find those here.

How far from campus?

  • Walking or biking: Many international students walk to UNM or ride a bike. There are many opportunities for living in close proximity to the UNM campus.

  • City bus: Bus routes in Albuquerque are very limited. We recommend that you become familiar with the bus system before you rent an apartment or a house in a neighborhood which is not close to campus.

  • Shuttle service: some apartment complexes offer shuttle service to campus. Research on the shuttle service before you rent: some shuttle services are not available on the weekends/holidays or during late hours.

  • Car: If you are interested in purchasing a car for transportation, click here.

Nearest grocery store?

There is a variety of grocery stores in Albuquerque. However, it is important that you locate a grocery store near your apartment/house before you move in, especially if you are not planning on buying a car.

Parking/Parking Permits

Almost all apartment complexes have free parking for tenants. If you are planning to rent a house and there is no parking on the property, you might need to obtain a city permit (free of charge) to park on the street. For information about parking on campus, click here.

Internet and Cable TV Access

Typically not included in your rent, but you can purchase them through private companies.

Renters Insurance

Will protect your personal property in case of robbery, fire, or other damages that may happen to your apartment or house. This only costs approximately $150 per year in most cases, and is a great option to protect your belongings. 

Legal Questions

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Legal issues related to housing may come up while you live in your apartment or house.

Law Access New Mexico is a non-profit organization that provides free telephone legal assistance for low-income individuals related to many issues, including housing. They have many housing handouts on their webpage that provide helpful information. Please see their website. They can also be reached by phone at: 998-4529 or 1-800-340-9771. They have interpreters available for many languages if you prefer to communicate in a language other than English.

What is the estimated price range for housing in Albuquerque?

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These are approximate costs only for off campus housing.

  • Room in Private Home: $300-$475 a month

  • Studio(a small apartment with only one main room, kitchen and bathroom): $350-$500 a month

  • 1-Bedroom Apartment: $475-$650 a month

  • 2-Bedroom Apartment: $650-$950 a month

  • House: $1,000-$2,500 per month (can be shared with other students)

Are pets allowed?

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You must check the lease or ask the landlord if pets are allowed.

Is tobacco use allowed?

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Many landlords prohibit smoking in rental properties. Check the lease or ask the landlord if tobacco use is allowed in the residence.

What if I need a social security number for the landlord to do a background check on me?

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Some rental properties require a background check for an applicant, and the applicant must have a social security number in order for the background check to be done.  Unless you have authorized employment, you will not be able to get a social security number.  However, if you explain to the landlord that you are an international student and don't have one, they will often be flexible and waive this requirement.

Can I get help with being met at the airport, finding temporary accommodations, finding furniture or finding off-campus housing?

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International Students, Inc. (ISI) is an independent volunteer Christian community service organization that offers its services to new international students in the form of airport pick-up, providing temporary home stays and assistance with finding furniture and permanent housing. For more information visit ISI’s website  or email them at isiabq@isionline.org or contact Joan Lasche by phone 505-238-6064.

Areas that are not safe

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The area just south of UNM attracts a lot of homeless people and is less safe than other areas. As a result, this area can be cheaper, but you should be aware of the risk.