HUH Application Process

Renting with Harvard University Housing is different from a typical apartment search. We’re here to help guide you through each step. 

Ready to apply?

Full-time Harvard graduate students, faculty, and employees who meet our eligibility requirements are welcome to submit an application at any time of the year.

  • Once we receive your application, we will email you within five business days to let you know if your application is approved, denied, or if more information is required.
  • Applications will only be processed when all requested information is submitted.
  • Once your HUH application is approved you will be able to login to the Applicant Portal, see the Currently Available list, and choose an apartment to lease.

Important Privacy Information

Beware of email scams! If you get a request for personal information about your application or your login information that seems suspicious please call (617) 495-1459 or email

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The Housing Lottery

Every spring, a large number of HUH apartments become available to rent. To manage all requests equitably, we have created the Housing Lottery. 

Each applicant is assigned a window of time where they are able to log in, view the inventory of remaining units, and select a unit (if available). We refer to that assigned window as your assigned “View & Select Window”. The Housing Lottery begins in early to mid-May and runs through early June, or until all available units have been selected. Since the number of approved applicants typically outweighs the number of available units, being assigned a View and Select Window in the Housing Lottery does not guarantee an apartment.

View Window

  • The View Window is the time when applicants can view and research units that are available in the lottery. View windows are 23 hours.
  • During the View Window, unit-specific floorplans and other details are visible to applicants within the portal.
  • No one is able to choose a unit to lease within the View Window, it is for browsing options only.
  • HUH recommends writing down or making a personal list of at least 10 unit options for your Select window.

Select Window

  • The Select Window will be the day following the assigned View Window. During their assigned Select window, applicants choose from the remaining available units to lease.
  • Units go fast. Selection is “first click, first served”, so be ready to choose quickly.
  • Having a Select Window does not guarantee you will get a unit.

Important Information to Know

  • All applicants who submitted their applications by May 1st will be included in the Housing Lottery, and randomly assigned a View and Select window, unless they have selected a unit from the Currently Available list (located in the applicant portal).
  • All applications eligible for the HUH Lottery will receive an email in early May indicating that they have been assigned to a View and Select window.
  • All available apartments are selectable during the first round of View & Select Windows, with the remaining available apartments selectable in subsequent windows. Typically, there are two View and Select Windows per week. The Lottery runs until all apartments are selected, or all Lottery Windows have occurred - whichever happens first.
  • Applicants should check their emails regularly during the weeks following their application and leading up to the Housing Lottery. Important updates, notifications, and best practices for a smooth View & Select Window experience are sent to all approved applicants during this time.
  • Once the Lottery has ended, if you have not selected an apartment, we strongly recommend that you continue to monitor the Currently Available List, as apartments will most likely continue to become available as applicants cancel their selections and tenants choose to cancel their leases.
someone browsing their computer, with a pen and paper in hand.

Stay Informed

We communicate with applicants and residents via email. They will come from one of three different email addresses: “,” “,” or via “”. We also send important information through Constant Contact, so please do not opt out. We recommend checking your junk and spam filters regularly for updates.

Application and Rental Process

1. Apply

  • Applications are accepted all year long.
  • Applications are not binding and there’s no cost to apply.
  • Apply by May 1st to participate in the annual Housing Lottery.

Tip: Sign up for our Informational Sessions during our spring application period (March 1–May 1) to learn more about the rental and application process, or watch our HUH Informational Video on YouTube which outlines all the need-to-know information about our process!

Start Your Application

Screenshot of selecting academic term to begin application process

2. Get approved

  • Look for your approval status email, which typically arrives within three business days.
  • Approval emails will come from
  • Be sure to check your junk/spam folders on a regular basis.
Sample application approved email

3. Select your apartment

  • Select from Currently Available apartments at any time of the year.
  • Or select your apartment during the annual Housing Lottery period each spring.

Tip: If you select a Currently Available apartment, you will not be eligible to select a different apartment during the Housing Lottery.

If you make a mistake or change your mind after confirming your selection, please contact us immediately at Please note that during the annual Housing Lottery period, there’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to get back into your Select Window to choose another apartment with HUH.

Screenshot of apartment selection process

4. Sign your lease

  • Typically within two business days, you will receive an email from a leasing coordinator, requesting that you sign your lease electronically. 
  • Make your initial rent payment.
    • (Note: You must make your initial payment before HUH will countersign your lease).
Screenshot of lease signing process

5. Pick up your keys

  • Once your lease is executed and countersigned by HUH, key pickup can happen on or after the date your lease starts.
  • Make arrangements 2–7 business days in advance of pickup (check with your property management office on the exact timing).
Image of a keypad and key fob


Menu icon eligibility white
Before you apply, check to make sure you meet our applicant requirements and review our occupancy guidelines.
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Learn about the lottery preferences for families.

If you plan to live with a roommate, we recommend that each roommate applies individually between March 1st and May 1st. More information about living with roommates can be found in our Roommate section.
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Find out how HUH provides reasonable accommodations, and learn how to make a request.
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Understand the steps involved in signing your lease. Your lease is not valid until you and HUH have both signed it.
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Learn when rent is due, and how the rental payments are made.
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Explore the list of terms we use to better understand leasing and living in HUH apartments.
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Preview the apartments within the HUH portfolio.

Note: To view available apartments, eligible Harvard affiliates must first submit an application for approval. Approved applicants can select units from the Currently Available list within the Applicant Portal at any time during the year. The list of available apartments changes regularly.