First-Year Housing Requirement

We believe that residence hall living greatly enhances the total educational experience. Research shows that students who live in a residence hall generally have a higher grade point average, have a higher degree of satisfaction with their college careers and are more likely to graduate than students who choose other living arrangements.

Therefore, in an effort to enhance your student’s success, all first year students who graduated from high school between September - June are required to live on campus and participate in the University Meal Plan during their first Fall & Spring semesters at Lamar University. Students wanting an exception to this policy may submit a waiver request for review at the Housing & Residence Life Office.

Institutional and national research shows that students who live on campus are more likely to remain in college, achieve higher GPA’s, and graduate with a degree in comparison to students living off-campus.

Who Qualifies for This Requirement

All First-Year students. A First-Year student is classified as a student who has graduated from high school within the previous academic year. All First-Year students are required to reside in University housing and to maintain a Residential dining plan during their first year, which will normally include the Fall and Spring semesters. Anyone signing an academic year housing/dining contract will be required to fulfill the terms and conditions of that contract.

Housing Guarantee

First-year, full-time students are guaranteed housing on campus.

Students attempting to live off campus who have not been granted an exemption by Housing & Residence Life will be required to move into a residence hall and will be billed for the full academic year.

Duration of Living on Campus Requirement

First-year students enrolling for the first time in the Fall must live in the residence halls for the Fall and Spring semesters.

First-year students enrolling for the first time in the Spring must live in the residence halls for the Spring  semester.

Deadline to Apply for Housing and Meal Plan: July 30, 2024

If a first-year student does not complete the Housing Contract OR submit a Housing Exemption Request on or before July 30, a charge for the Fall semester housing and meal plan will be placed on the student’s LU financial account. The student is required to complete the Housing Contract and move into their assigned room. The charges will remain on the student’s LU financial account regardless of whether the contract is completed.

First-year students admitted to LU after July 30 will have housing and meal plan charges automatically placed on their LU financial account. The student must complete the  Housing Contract or submit a Housing Exemption Request before the first day of Fall classes.

Meal Plans

Students will select a Meal Plan from the available options when completing the Housing Contract.


In accordance with the First-Year Housing Requirement, all first-year, full-time students are required to live in campus housing operated by Lamar University Housing & Residence Life for the entirety of their first year unless they meet one of the following criteria to be considered for an exemption:

  1. Reside with a parent/legal guardian in the local area.
    Students that live with a parent/legal guardian within a 60-mile radius from Lamar University and will commute to campus.
    • Documentation to provide:
      • A completed Housing Exemption Request.
      • Proof of permanent residency being a established at least 6 months in advance of enrollment:
        • Must provide a utility bill and driver's license of the parent/legal guardian. All addresses listed must match the indicated home address used when completing the Housing Exemption Request. Those with a different address listed on driver's license may be asked to update license and provide documentation from Texas Department of Transportation of processed address change request.
      • Copies of the court approved guardianship papers, if living with a legal guardian.

  2. Married and/or have dependent children in residence.
    • Documentation to provide:
      • A completed Housing Exemption Request.
      • Copy of Marriage certificate
      • Copy of latest tax return (redacted) to show children claimed as dependent OR a birth certificate of dependent(s)

  3. Earned 30 or more semester credit hours since high school graduation in at an accredited college or university.
    • Documentation to provide:
      • A completed Housing Exemption Request.
      • Transcript showing proof of completed college credits from an accredited college or university.

We do not automatically grant exemptions and consider each request as it is submitted. We strive to be consistent and equal with all students, so exemptions are seldom granted. Generally, Housing & Residence Life notifies students whether the exemption is granted 1-3 weeks after the request is submitted. Processing time varies due to documentation that is required for consideration but not submitted by the student.

Benefits to Living on Campus

  • The all-inclusive housing rate provides furnished suites, cable, high-speed wired and wireless internet
  • All utilities costs are paid for the student.
  • 24-hour staffed security monitoring with resident card access located at entry
  • Fire alarm and fire suppression systems
  • Live-in professional and student staff on call 24 hours for each residence hall
  • Common area full kitchen, activity areas, free washer/dryer use, swimming pool, basketball and volleyball courts, pizza and convenience store with late night access
  • Microwave in every suite
  • Easy access to classes, tutoring, writing center, and library
  • Student Health Center for medical and counseling needs
  • Recreational Sports Center for fitness and relaxation
  • LU Police is readily available 24/7
  • Free LU Shuttle Service
  • Over 125 social and wellness programs for only residents to enjoy


Phone: (409) 880-8550
Hours: M-F, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Contact Staff or Residence Halls


LU Police: (409) 880-7777

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