Living Off Campus

Before you decide to live off-campus, consider the pros and cons and learn how they impact your financial aid.

The Financial Aid Office has determined the costs associated with living off-campus based on national averages as well as the California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) Student Expenses and Resources Survey (SEARS).

Students who choose to live off-campus will see a reduction in their overall eligibility for financial aid due to the less expensive options of either living off-campus or with parent(s). Most students who live off-campus or with their parent(s) see a reduction in their need-based scholarship by the difference between the on-campus and off-campus or with parent budgets. 

2019-2020 Budgets On-Campus Off-Campus with Parent
Tuition $55,980 $55,980 $55,980
Fees $596 $596 $596
Room & Board $16,034 $9,720 $6,786
Books & Supplies $1,240 $1,240 $1,240
Misc/Personal Expenses $1,700 $1,700 $1,700
Local Transportation $1,050 $1,050 $1,050
Total $76,600 $70,286 $67,352
Difference ------- $6,314 $9,248


For example, if you normally receive $25,000 in need-based scholarship when living on-campus, and you decide to live off-campus, you can expect a reduction in your scholarship of $6,314 (difference between on and off campus budgets). Thus your off-campus scholarship amount would be $18,686. If you plan to live with your parents, the reduction is $9,248 (difference between on-campus and with parent budgets) and your scholarship amount would be $15,752. Please refer to chart above for budget reduction amounts.

When planning your off-campus budget, you should try to budget using the Off-Campus Room & Board budget of $9,720 for a 10 month period (August-May). With a budget of $9,720 over 10 months, you can afford to spend $972/month for all off-campus expenses (i.e., rent, food, utilities, and internet). If your expenses are close to this amount, you would spend the same amount of money whether you lived on-campus (in a double room with Meal Plan B) or off-campus. If your monthly budget is more, living off-campus will be more costly than living on-campus. If your off-campus expenses are less, then you would be saving money by living off-campus.