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Future Residents

why student housing

With studies that show students who live on campus graduate sooner and succeed academically at higher rates than students who live off-campus, all students are encouraged to live in Student Housing for at least two years. Student Housing at CSU San Marcos offers a variety of housing options ideally suited for incoming freshmen, returning undergraduate and graduate students.

Living in Student Housing is the ultimate way to experience CSU San Marcos, as you'll find plenty of opportunities to expand your academic knowledge, build friendships and explore the diverse campus culture. As a resident student, you'll have immediate access to your professors, the library, computer labs, and recreational facilities, all in a convenient and practical environment. You'll spend no time commuting and parking, providing you with more time for studying, socializing, working, exercising, or pursuing your personal interests.

This is not just "a place to live." Student Housing is your gateway to the complete CSU San Marcos experience, the place to succeed.

Click here to view a calculator which will help you determine the cost of your preferred space and meal plan. PLEASE NOTE: This is informational only. Utilizing this calculator does not reserve a space on campus. Your License Agreement will include a final cost of housing (not including the Meal Plan.)


First-time Freshman Live on Requirement

Since the beginning in Fall 2012, all first time freshmen admitted from outside the CSUSM Local Service Area are required to live in CSUSM Student Housing for their first year.  

The University highly encourages all students to live in student housing at least two years while studying at the University.  If you are from outside the CSUSM Local Service Area and required to live in Student Housing, you will not be able to register for New Student Orientation or register for classes without completing the Student Housing contract process or requesting and receiving approval to be exempt from the live-on requirement.

If you have questions about the exemption process or need assistance completing the form, please contact housing, at (760) 750-3711.  You can also email your questions regarding housing exemptions to

Meal Plan Requirement 

Starting in Fall 2020, all on-campus residents will be required to have a Meal Plan. For first-year students, the Meal Plan will consist of a block of meals per week to be eaten in the dining cafe as well as an allowance of dining dollars that can be used to purchase food at various eateries on campus. For more information on the Meal Plan including cost, options, and FAQ information, please visit campus dining.

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