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Can a Boyfriend or Girlfriend Live on Campus With You?

As a general rule, a boyfriend or girlfriend cannot live on campus with you. Undergrad students aren’t allowed to live with their partners on campus as many university staff members don’t have faith in young relationships and don’t want to deal with the stress of re-housing in the event of a breakup. 

The rest of this article discusses being in a relationship in college and possible living circumstances for couples. If you’re in a relationship and are concerned about staying connected without living together, I provide some tips for young couples to stay close even if they don’t live with their partner.  

Can Your Boyfriend or Girlfriend Stay Overnight?

In many cases, your boyfriend or girlfriend can stay overnight, as this generally shouldn’t be a problem at most schools. Verify with your campus as each university has specific policies. If you have a roommate, make sure you have their permission before you allow your partner to spend the night in your room with you. 

Some universities require you to inform someone who works in housing for the university that you’ll be having an overnight guest. It’s important to check your school’s specific policies.

Living together on campus - what boyfriends and girlfriends need to know.

Why Your Boyfriend or Girlfriend Can’t Live on Campus With You

If you’re an undergrad student, it’s unlikely that your boyfriend or girlfriend will live on campus with you. 

If you’re both attending the same school, it may be possible to request a dorm room for two people and then request that you be each other’s roommate, although some universities will raise their eyebrows at couples wanting to live together. 

University staff tends to not have a lot of faith in relationships between students. If you and your boyfriend or girlfriend were to break up, they’d need to reassign you, which is a headache for you and them. 

Additionally, other students may feel uncomfortable with a couple living near them and using communal spaces. 

See College Roommates: 11 Most Common Student Questions

Trying to have your partner move in without telling your university is a bad idea for various reasons. One is that your partner wouldn’t be paying rent or the room and board fee you likely pay to your college, so if they did find out, you and your partner could be fined. 

Additionally, there would be more clutter and mess in communal areas, as there would be an extra person living in the space than the university planned for. 

If you’re both postgraduate students, it may be more possible for your boyfriend or girlfriend to live with you on campus. Many university staff members believe that relationships between people in their early or mid-20s are more likely to last than people in their late teens experiencing independence for the first time. 

Because of this, when postgrad students apply for housing, they may be able to pick accommodation with their partners (source).

Pros and Cons of Living With Your Partner on Campus

If you can convince your university to allow you to live together on campus, it’s important to consider the pros and cons before committing to this housing arrangement. 

Here are some pros: 

  • You get to spend more time with your favorite person. Hopefully, you’re with your partner because you genuinely like them. Living with your partner on campus may help you with homesickness or the stress of university life. 
  • You’ll only need to buy one of everything. If you want to live with your college partner, there’s a good chance you want to live with them after you graduate, too. If you live together in college, you’ll be sharing any furniture items, electronics, and appliances you’ll be using in your room, so you’ll avoid the unnecessary cost of buying two of anything. 
  • You’ll learn more about each other. Living together is a way to learn more about your partner, so you’ll probably feel closer to them than ever.

However, there are some disadvantages you might want to think about: 

  • You may get distracted. You may find it difficult to study for your midterm when your boyfriend or girlfriend wants to cuddle and watch a movie instead. You’re primarily on campus to learn, and living with your partner could be a distraction. 
  • You’re missing out on the typical college experience. Living with a roommate you barely know is part of the typical freshman year college experience, and if you choose to live with your partner, you’ll be missing out on that. You may also find it more difficult to make new friends if you’re relying on your partner for companionship. 
  • You could break up. You may think that you and your partner will be together forever, and maybe you’ll be. But there’s always a possibility of breaking up, and then trying to figure out your housing situation will add additional stress you won’t want to deal with if you’re already going through heartbreak. 

Ultimately, if your college does allow you to live with a partner, it’s up to you two to decide if that’s a step you’re ready to take.

How To Stay Connected With Your Partner Without Living Together

Not living with your partner on campus isn’t a death sentence for your relationship. Here are some ways to stay close even if you aren’t roomies: 

  • Visit each other. 
  • Have a weekly date night. 
  • Cook and eat a meal together, whether in person or virtually over FaceTime. 
  • Send each other good morning and good night texts. 
  • Walk each other to classes. 
  • Have joint study sessions. 
  • Play couple games together when you are with each other.

Final Thoughts 

If you’re an undergrad student, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to live with your boyfriend or girlfriend on campus. However, if you can convince your university to allow you to live with your partner, there are some important pros and cons to consider before ultimately making that decision. Don’t worry, though. because even if you can’t live with your partner, there are ways to stay close. 

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