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Renewing Your Contract in Graduate Housing

Some matriculated students are qualified to renew their contracts for the subsequent academic year in a simple, one-step process that bypasses the Lottery. If you aren’t eligible to renew or if you want to move to a new residence for the coming year, you must join the Lottery. 

A student's degree program will be the guide for housing priority and will determine whether or not a student can renew.

Who is eligible to renew?

  • Doctoral students (PhD, DMA & JSD) who are living in housing during the spring quarter and have been in housing for fewer than six years.
  • MD students who are living in housing during the spring quarter and have been in housing for fewer than five years.
  • JD students who are living in housing during the spring quarter and have been in housing for fewer than three years.
  • Master's students with children who are living in housing during the spring quarter and have lived in housing for one year.

To qualify for contract renewal, you must:

  • Have at least one remaining year of medium housing assignment priority.
  • Remain in the same category of housing (i.e., single student, couple without children or student with children) through the summer and following year.
  • Be willing to accept any other housing assignment for the summer and following year if you live in an academic-year residence that is closed for the summer.
  • Be an enrolled, matriculated student in good academic and financial standing with the university through the year you are renewing.
  • Renew by the graduate housing First-round Lottery deadline.


Students in off-campus complexes are not able to renew their contracts and must join the Lottery each year. 

If, while you live in university housing, your family size or status changes and exceeds the occupancy limit for your apartment, you cannot renew your contract. You must request reassignment to the appropriate type of housing.

If you graduate or take a leave of absence or your status changes to non-matriculated student after you renew or have been assigned university housing, you must contact Housing Assignments immediately as you may no longer be eligible for housing.

If you are living in an academic-year residence that is closed for the summer, we may not be able to offer you a renewal in place. In order to secure housing for the summer and following year you must submit two housing applications, one for summer and one for the next academic year starting in autumn, on Axess during the Lottery. If you have medium priority, apply for both summer and autumn, and are willing to accept any other housing assignment that is open all year, you will be assigned in a special renewal process in advance of the Lottery.

How to Renew your Contract

  • Log into Axess before the first-round Lottery deadline.
  • Select Housing & Dining from the My Information menu.
  • Select Housing & Dining Login.
  • Select Renew Housing Contract and follow the prompts.

Don’t wait until the last day to renew! Axess allows only a limited number of students to log on at one time and the system can slow down during periods of heavy use.

Renewing with a Group

Even if you renew your contract, you can be part of a group of students who are participating in the Lottery. If group members are assigned to the same type of housing you occupy, you can contact your Housing Service Center and request a move to the same apartment. You will not be able to automatically pull group members into your type of housing so there is a chance you group will not all be assigned to the same housing options. 

Vacations and Sublicensing

When you renew, you may apply for one vacation quarter during the academic year. Most students are not enrolled for the summer but you can apply for a Vacation Quarter during a different quarter if you were enrolled for the previous three quarters (including summer) and plan to take a one quarter leave. During this time, you may remain in your residence without registering for courses. Or, if you plan to be away from campus or register in absentia during your vacation quarter, you may be able to sublicense your room or apartment to a Stanford affiliate. There are specific conditions under which you may sublicense your apartment, and your sublicense agreement must be approved by Student Housing. It is important to read the Vacation Quarter petition and sublicense information so you do not jeopardize your eligibility for housing.

Misrepresentation of Facts

The university, with cause, may ask you to provide certifiable documents of facts detailed in your housing application or on your signed Residence Agreement. Any misrepresentation of facts for housing purposes is considered a violation of the Stanford University Residence Agreement and the Fundamental Standard of Student Conduct, and may result in the loss of housing privileges and/or possible university disciplinary action.