You will need to investigate your own housing options. Cascadia does not have residence halls or dormitories. The majority of international students at Cascadia stay with American host families. Many students also find comfortable apartments near the college. We provide you with some resources to help you with your research as you seek the best housing option for you.
We recommend that new international students strongly consider living in a homestay for at least the first year while studying in the United States. The many benefits of living with an American family include:
- Safe, warm and friendly environment for students studying in a new country
- Fantastic opportunity to learn about culture and lifestyle in the United States
- No need to worry about buying furniture and other household items
- Improve your English language skills
- In many homestay arrangements, meals will be included in your fee
Cascadia refers all homestay housing requests to outside agencies. The agencies listed below are reputable, privately owned homestay agencies from which you can choose. Do not send your housing application and placement fee to Cascadia: it is your responsibility to communicate closely with your housing agent to arrange your own accommodations.
The PLACE— Seattle
Intercultural Homestays & Services Inc.
USA International, Inc.
American Homestay Network
Apartments allow for a more independent living situation than a homestay, but there are many more responsibilities and costs associated with apartment living. In addition to monthly rent, you will need to pay for electricity and other utilities, cable and internet service, food, furniture, and other daily needs from toothpaste to cleaning supplies. You will also need to be at least 18 years old to rent an apartment.
Before you decide to rent an apartment, be sure to:
- Make a budget, including rent, food, and utilities expenses – What can you afford?
- Choose a neighborhood. Will you be close to campus? Public transportation? Stores?
- Consider living with a roommate to share expenses
- Search online, look for postings on campus, ask your friends
- Ask your landlord about any details you need to know – some suggested questions are below
- Read your lease very carefully before signing – it is a legal document!
Questions to ask your landlord:
- How much is rent?
- How long is the lease?
- How much is the security deposit? Is it refundable?
- Why did the last tenant leave?
- Are any utilities included?
- Are pets allowed?
- Is painting allowed?
- What bus lines are nearby? Stores?
- Is laundry available onsite?
- What kind of security does the building have?
- Can I sublease my room/apartment?
- Is there parking available?
The following websites may be helpful if you are interested in renting an apartment. To help you locate local information at the sites listed, Cascadia is located in Bothell, Washington and our zip code is 98011.
- Cort - provides furniture rental packages and housing information for students living off-campus
Note: Cascadia is not affiliated with the sites listed above.
Useful Terms for Renters:
- Lease - a legal contract between a tenant and a landlord.
- Tenant - one who rents property owned by another.
- Landlord - the owner of property.
- Sublease - when a tenant rents out all or part of the apartment while still maintaining a lease with the landlord as the primary tenant. Many leases do not allow this.
- Security deposit - money paid to the landlord as security in case of damage to the property or failure to comply with the lease agreement. All or part of this money is usually refundable.
- Background check - a check of your credit and rental history done by the landlord to ensure that you will be a good tenant. This is done before you sign a lease.
Sharing an apartment or house with other students or friends can be a good way to reduce your living expenses, but there are some important things to think about before you move in with roommates.
Issues to discuss with your potential roommate:
- How will we divide the rent and utilities (electricity, cable TV, telephone) among the roommates?
- Will we distribute responsibility for household chores?
- Will food be purchased and cooked together or separately?
- Are there “quiet hours” or times when guests are not allowed?
- Should we have rules regarding drinking alcohol or smoking in the home?
- How much notice should roommates give before moving out of the home?