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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the ODU Housing Portal?

The ODU Housing Portal is the host site for the electronic application and room reservation process. The electronic application process allows you the convenience of selecting your own building, room, and roommate(s) based on availability.

How will I navigate through the ODU Housing Portal?

The ODU Housing Portal provides a step-by-step application and room reservation process. In order to successfully complete the application and room selection process, students are encouraged to read and follow directions on each screen in the portal. If you have questions navigating through the portal, please contact Housing & Residence Life at (757) 683-4283.

Who is eligible to enter the ODU Housing Portal?

All students, current and prospective (must have confirmed to attend ODU), may enter the ODU Housing Portal. However, a $250 housing deposit must be paid before fully completing the application process. Deposits can be completed in the ODU Housing Portal or at the Cashier's window (must have cash only), on campus. Please keep in mind, priority of room selection is based on the date of the deposit; therefore, you should submit a deposit as soon as possible.

How do I enter the ODU Housing Portal?

You can enter the ODU Housing Portal by logging on to www.odu.edu/housing and clicking on the ODU Housing Portal button located in the column on the right.

When can I begin the application process?

Students can enter the ODU Housing Portal beginning January 13, 2014 to complete the first half of the application process. Please remember to pay the $250 housing deposit so that you can continue through the room selection process later in the semester. The system will navigate you through several pages before stopping. You will continue the room reservation process after you receive a room reservation timeslot. If a Room Reservation Timeslot has not been sent, the system will stop you until a Room Reservation Timeslot has been generated for you.

What is a Room Reservation Timeslot?

A Room Reservation Timeslot is the time when you will enter the ODU Housing Portal to reserve your space. The Room Reservation Timeslot is based on the date of your deposit. It provides groups who have the ability to fill a room/suite and/or individuals priority in the sign-up process based on a predetermined number. You will be notified of your room reservation number by email before your reservation timeslot.

What if I miss my Room Reservation Timeslot?

If a Room Reservation Timeslot is missed, there is still an opportunity to sign up for the desired space based on availability. There is a short window for each particular sign up option. Refer to the website for these dates. If the sign up period has expired, you will not be able to make a reservation until you are notified by our office.

Will I be able to reserve my current room?

Yes. Homestead Week is scheduled early in the sign up process. Current residents, Dominion House, Foundation House, The Inn, Ireland House, Nusbaum, Powhatan Apartments, University Village, Virginia House (upper-class space only) have the opportunity to log in to the ODU Housing Portal and reserve (homestead) their current residence hall/apartment room. These students can also bring in their desired roommates to fill the space. Please refer to the website for the Homestead Week dates. (Please keep in mind, if you homestead a room in any of the LLCs, you must meet all eligibility requirements. If you live in a freshman space, you will not be able to reserve this space. You will be notified by Housing & Residence Life when your priority room reservation timeslot will be scheduled.).

Students reserving their current room during Homestead Week are not required to sign up as a group; however, it is the best time to pull in desired roommate(s). The appointed group leader should currently live in the space to be reserved. For example: Group leader lives in Powhatan C2, if they have a group, they can assign the other bed space to roommate(s).

How do I know if my reservation is complete?

After selecting a room or apartment, you need to choose a meal plan if it is required for the space you have selected. At the end of the application process, a Room and Meal Confirmation will be available to you. Confirmation must be completed within 72 hours of choosing your room. If these steps are not completed within 72 hours, your reservation will be canceled. (All roommates must complete this process).

How do I find a roommate?

Returning students must sign up as a group. Depending on where you plan to live, you must have enough roommates to fill the space of the unit you are selecting, for example: 4-bedroom apartment must have a roommate grouping of four. In the ODU Housing Portal, you will get to a section called Roommate Groups.

Roommate groups allow students the opportunity to select and/or approve individuals interested in being a part of the group. The maximum number of individuals for a roommate grouping cannot exceed four. If applying for the apartments, groups cannot exceed the preferred apartment occupancy (i.e. If interested in living in a 2-bedroom apartment, roommate groupings should not exceed two). If a group is unable to select a two bedroom, the Group Leader can add additional roommates to match the next desired apartment (i.e. 3-bedroom or 4-bedroom).

Prior to beginning the Roommate Grouping process, we encourage you to consider possible roommates for your group. If you know who will be a part of your group, please select a Group Leader who will serve as a responsible point of contact with the Housing & Residence Life and the group. The Group Leader has the capabilities to add roommates, delete roommates, and select group room assignments (It is extremely important to select a Group Leader who will be responsible to complete the entire process). The Group Leader will begin the process by clicking Creating a new group (see Options below). The Group Leader will create a group name and password. Group Leaders need to share this information with group members. Group members can add themselves to a group by clicking Add yourself to a group (see Options below). After a student has added or deleted him or herself to or from a group, an e-mail message will automatically be sent to the Group Leader.

What if I cannot find my roommate?

If you are unable to locate your roommate in the portal, it could be that your preferred roommate has not applied. In order to view their application, they must submit their application and this includes paying the $250 deposit.

Looking for roommate(s) to complete the group?

Compatible roommates can be determined by searching for detailed information, viewing the student profile, or by matching profile responses.

Search by details: This feature allows you to search for your selected roommate, if you already have a roommate in mind, by providing the last name, first name, and/or student ID number.

Search by student profile: This option allows you to search for roommates by selecting profile questions that are important to you in selecting a compatible roommate.

Search by browsing matching roommates: This allows you to browse roommates who have a similar match to your profile information. It will show a percentage of compatibility based on responses from the profile information.

Once you have determined the best compatible roommate match, you must Request that person to be your roommate. A message will be sent to that student and they need to log in to the ODU Housing Portal and Accept Request the roommate matching. The requested roommate can review the roommate's profile, before clicking Accept Request. The requested roommate also has the option to Decline Request. If the roommate request is denied, a message will go to the individual who originally requested the roommate match.

How will I know who is behind the screenname?

Students can send messages to others in the roommate grouping (returning application) or in the roommate search section. Additionally, student emails can also be found when viewing a student's profile. We encourage you to contact possible roommates outside the ODU Housing Portal to get with one another prior to finalizing room selection.

What if I need to cancel my reservation?

You may cancel your reservation through the ODU Housing Portal. You will need to select the application you are cancelling and the last page of the application is an electronic cancellation form. In order to have your deposit refunded you must cancel before the priority cancellation deadline, May 15, 2014.

After the priority cancellation date, you will forfeit your deposit. You must still notify Housing & Residence Life at housing@odu.edu to have your reservation cancelled.

How will I receive information from the Department of Residence Life?

Housing & Residence Life sends all correspondence to your ODU email account. It is your responsibility to check your ODU email account periodically for any information regarding the application process or other Housing & Residence Life information.