Welcome to Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania
The Graduate Guide is here!
The University of Pennsylvania is a dynamic and exciting place to undertake graduate studies. For some graduate and professional students this will be the first time they have lived in Philadelphia and, for others, it will be the first time they have lived in the United States. We extend a warm welcome to you all.
A wide range of housing options are available to graduate students at the University of Pennsylvania. You may choose to live on campus, in the high-rise apartment buildings at Sansom Place, or you can choose to live off-campus, as do most of the graduate students. Philadelphia is the fifth largest city in the United States and has a reputation as one of the most livable cities in the country. It is a major urban center that has retained the feel of a "city of neighborhoods". With rents remaining steady or modestly increasing over the last two years, the cost of housing in Philadelphia continues to be much more affordable than in other East Coast cities such as Boston and New York. Through the use of Philadelphia's mass transit system (SEPTA), many areas of the city and the suburbs are within easy commute.
Penn's campus has an ideal location at the eastern side of University City/West Philadelphia and in close proximity to the Center City area. The vast majority of graduate students choose to live in Center City and University City, within easy reach of campus, shopping, cultural and recreational attractions, and outstanding restaurants.
This guide has been specifically developed to assist graduate students in understanding their off-campus housing options while at the University of Pennsylvania and to provide a source of information for those students who elect to live off-campus. Although comprehensive in the topics discussed, the guide is necessarily general in nature. Please be aware that the information provided in this guide is not legal advice. The resolution of tenancy issues is highly dependent on the specific circumstances of a situation. For this reason, we invite graduate students to contact the Office of Off-Campus Services if they require support. We are here to assist you in any way we can to make your off-campus living experience a positive one.
We wish you all the best during your time at the University of Pennsylvania.
Off-Campus Services Staff
OCS would like to acknowledge the hard work and significant contributions of Julieanne Herskowitz of the UPenn School of Design, as well as Aida Vega (C '13) and Ariel Herman (C '11). Additionally, the online guide would not have been possible without the technical expertise and dedicated efforts of Adam Potoczek. Many thanks to everyone who contributed information and time in support of this guide.
: This guide was prepared solely to be used as a resource and is in no way a legal document. The Office of Off-Campus Services cannot and does not guarantee either the correctness of all information furnished herein, or the complete absence of errors and omissions.