Student housing shortage

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Photo credit: Brooke Morrill

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Carrie Laudie | Editor-in-Chief | @carrielaudie

Photo credit: Brooke Morrill | Photo Editor | @brookemorrill


Most of the student-housing apartment complexes are full, but students are continuing to be admitted to UVU. As of August 18, admissions and enrollment is up 3.38 percent from this time in 2014. As an open-enrollment institution it is estimated that another 2,000 students will be admitted in the next few weeks.

According to Matt Chambers, program director of Housing and Residence Life, they don’t know how many of those 2,000 students are local students who will be living at home, or who will be looking for housing, and there is no way to keep track of them. Most of the complexes were filled a month ahead of last year and most of the complexes have told him that they are completely full.

“In the past we’ve had students be able to come into our office two weeks into school and we could still make referrals to apartments,” said Chambers. “Now we’re seeing that some of the apartments were even full in May for Fall [semester].”

The influx of students is being created by a combination of LDS missionaries returning home and freshman that are continuing to be admitted. About two years ago when the LDS church lowered its missionary age enrollment in universities and colleges dropped around the state. Now those missionaries are coming back and it is creating a housing crisis in the Provo and Orem area.

“If you’re not on top of it you just don’t get housing,” said Jakell Larson, UVUSA vice-president of Student Activities.

Larson said that when she renewed her contract at Ventana in April she got one of the last contracts available.

Students do have the option of renting an apartment in standard apartment complexes, but those rates tend to be higher than student housing, even when the rent is split up between multiple people.

There are multiple student housing complexes being built right now, but none of those will be ready before school starts.

Although UVU’s housing situation may be tough for students who don’t have a place to lay their head yet, it’s not as tough as the plight of some students at Utah State University. An apartment complex in Logan pre-sold contracts for the 2014 school year, the only problem was that the complex wasn’t finished in time. Fast forward to 2015 and the same complex has done it again. Administrators at USU have been asked to rent out a room in their home if they have one available to help out the homeless students in Logan.