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Application Process

Let's get started! Whether you are coming to uOttawa for your first year or coming back in residence, here are the steps to follow to submit your application.

Housing guarantee

Guaranteed First-Year Students

Residence at uOttawa is guaranteed to newly admitted first-year students who meet the following criteria and deadlines:

  • Must be admitted to a full-time undergraduate program* in the fall term
  • Must not have already completed more than 5 university courses
  • Must submit their residence application and pay the deposit by the deadline (check dates and deadlines)

Students from CEGEP or college admitted directly into second year also qualify for the housing guarantee.

This guarantee does not apply if you:

  • have already completed more than five university courses or the equivalent
  • have been admitted into a professional program.
  • apply for a 4-month agreement.

Keep in mind that when we assign rooms, we will consider the residence and room type preferences you state in your housing application; however, we cannot guarantee that these preferences will be met.

The guaranteed offer of residence expires on June 1 at 11:59 p.m. EDT.

Application period starts March 23, 2021.

Guaranteed Returners

Residence at uOttawa is also guaranteed to upper-year students who have signed 12-month agreements and want to return the following year. These students must meet the following criteria and deadlines must:

  • Complete a valid residence agreement until the end of the summer (i.e., have not terminated early).
  • Submit a residence application and pay the deposit within the allotted timeframe. See dates and deadlines. For 2021-2022, these students must apply between April 1, 2021 and April 15, 2021.
  • Must apply for a 12-month agreement. 

We cannot guarantee that students will be able to stay in the same room or even in the same residence. They may be required to move. We do our best to minimize room changes.

If students want to continue living with their current roommates, we ask that they list the names of these roommates in their application.

NOTE: Students who stayed in residence during the 2020-2021 academic year but who submitted an early termination request to leave before the end of their agreement do not qualify for a housing guarantee. Please review the information under “Non-Guaranteed Students”.

Application period starts April 1, 2021, and ends on April 15, 2021.

Non-Guaranteed Students

If you do not meet the above listed eligibility criteria for a housing guarantee, or if you have applied after the guaranteed housing deadlines, you may still apply to live in residence. All full-time students are welcome to apply for housing in residence, but we cannot guarantee availability.

Application period starts March 23, 2021.

Should there be any availability after assigning all the students with a housing guarantee, we will issue housing offers to non-guaranteed students on a first come, first served basis. The earliest possible offer will be sent toward the end of June, and then continuously throughout the summer as vacancies occur.

We may not be able to accommodate all applications. If you have not received a housing offer by mid-July, we highly recommend that you consider other forms of housing. Visit our Off-Campus Housing website for helpful information.

Application process

To submit a residence application

  1. Once you have received an offer of admission, log into the Housing Portal in uoZone
  2. Select your preferences (pending availability)
    You must select a minimum of three preferences and a maximum of seven.
  3. If you have a housing guarantee, pay the deposit by credit card issued by an institution with offices in Canada or the US or by an alternative payment method (processing your payment this way can take several days)
  4. Submit your application

For students with a housing guarantee: your application is considered complete when we receive both your application and the deposit.

Applications will be processed on a first come, first serve basis. See the section on the room assignment process for more information on how we assign rooms.

When you receive your residence offer

  1. Check your uOttawa email address regularly
  2. Accept your offer through the Housing Portal by the deadline
  3. If you do not have a guaranteed offer, pay the deposit when you accept your offer by credit card issued by an institution with offices in Canada or the US or by an alternative payment method (processing your payment this way can take several days).

Your offer is finalized only when we receive your acceptance and deposit.

To change your preferences

Once you have submitted your application online, you can log into the Housing Portal to change your application preferences.  

Do not withdraw your request.

  1. Log into the Housing Portal in uoZone
  2. Click “Edit” and update your preferences
  3. Save your changes

Note: Once you have been assigned a room, you will no longer be able to change your preferences.  

To cancel your September residence application

Frequently Asked Questions

Application Process

How do I access the Housing Portal?

Log in to uoZone, and select the “Applications” tab in the top menu. Then choose “Housing Portal” from the list available.

The Housing Portal opens at 9 a.m. on March 23, 2021 for 2021-2022 applications for new students, and is open from April 1 to April 15 for current in-house residents who wish to return. 

Reminder: You need to have received an offer of admission to have access to the Housing Portal. You cannot apply for residence if you have not yet been admitted to the University. You don't need to have accepted your offer of admission, but you do need to have received it. 

How can I prepare before accessing the Housing Portal?

The Portal is designed to give you all the information you need to book your room or apply for residence. If you wish to do some research beforehand, you can have a look at the following resources:

Is the application process mobile-friendly?

Although it is possible to log in to the Housing Portal and apply on a phone or tablet, we recommend using a desktop or laptop for the best experience.

Why don’t I see any type of (90U, single, etc.) room?

Some room types get booked very quickly. If you don’t see a room or room type available, reset your filters on the room selection page to make sure that you’re seeing all possible options.

If you still don’t see the room type you want, it means that you should select another room type because the one you are looking for is no longer available or is not available to your applicant type (for example, returners can only apply for 12-month buildings).

How do I narrow down my choices?

When you first get to the room selection screen, you’ll see every room type listed, to narrow down your choices, use the filters at the top of the screen:

Image of the filters on the room selection page, showing a price slider and drop downs for buildings, bedroom types, agreement length, meal plan, gender options, and LLC options, as well as a drop-down for sorting results and the reset filters button.

For example, you can filter the room type to indicate that you want a 7-day meal plan, an 8-month agreement, and a maximum price of $20,000 for the year.

You can also use the compare feature to compare between two and four room options side by side.

If you see a no results message (i.e. you select “90U” as the building but there’s nothing available), use the “reset filters” button to reset all options and start again.

How many preferences do I have to select if I am filling out an application?

You have to select a minimum of three preferences to continue with the application.  The maximum is seven.

I see an option to apply for 4 months only. Can I apply just for four months and move off campus in January?

Note that priority goes to those who want an 8- or 12-month agreement.  The housing guarantee does not apply for stays of only 4 months.

I am coming for four months only, but the totals for my room seem really high!

The totals listed on the room selection screen are for either 8 months or 12 months, as specified.  If you receive a 4-month offer, the total would match the 4-month period.

How do I know what meal plan to choose?

You can check out the meal plan website to learn more about the different options. 

What is included in the total price on the room selection page?

The total price is for the specified number of months.

It includes Internet, utilities, and the meal plan if you selected a room type with a meal plan.

Screen capture of housing portal 90U building showing costs



When will I receive my housing offer?

Guaranteed first-year students who applied before April 30 can expect to receive their housing offer between mid-May and mid-June.

Guaranteed first-year students who applied between May 1 and June 1 can expect to receive their housing offer between June 7 and July 14.

Should there be any availability after assigning all the students with a housing guarantee, we will issue housing offers to non-guaranteed students on a first come, first served basis. The earliest possible offer will be sent toward the end of June, and then continuously throughout the summer as vacancies occur.

For details, visit our Important residence dates and deadlines page

I received an offer I didn’t want. What do I do?

We have a limited number of rooms in each residence, and every year, interest in living in specific residences exceeds the space available. It is not possible to guarantee every student their preferred choices.

If you filled out an application and we sent you an offer that was not a high preference for you, it’s because your higher preferences were not available.

Read more about our room assignment process.

When will I need to pay a deposit?

If you are a student with a guarantee in residence, the deposit must be paid at the time you apply or book your room. Note that your reservation is not finalized until your $700 deposit is received.

All other students must pay the deposit when they accept their offer. You can pay via credit card within the Housing Portal or by alternative method of payment.

Visit the Important Residence Dates and Deadlines page for deposit refund deadlines in the event of reservation cancellation. 


How do you assign roommates?

Visit the room assignment and roommates page for information. 

I already know who I want to room with. How do I get a room with that person?

If you have both been accepted and are ready to apply for housing, we recommend that you go through the process at the same time on separate computers.

Once you are on the room selection page:

At the roommate question, specify the name of your roommate.

Select “submit application/roommate” priority. This means that our assignment team will prioritize putting you together as roommates over your room preferences. This could mean getting put in a room type that is lower in your preferences.

Shows the request specific roommate question, where the student has ticked their confirmation of how the sharing works, indicated the name of their roommate, and set their priority to “submit application/roommate”.

NOTE: Even if you both prioritize being roommates or if you aren’t applying at the same time (one of you has a later acceptance than the other), you may not be paired together if we don’t have fully vacant rooms, etc. We do not guarantee that roommates can be paired.

More details on roommate request and roommate matching

When will I find out who my roommate is?

We send out several rounds of emails letting you know who your roommates are (if applicable) in July and August.  Names and email addresses are communicated unless a student has not agreed to the sharing of the information when they applied.


What is the deadline to cancel my offer and receive a refund for my deposit?
Check the Important Residence Dates and Deadlines for the latest information.

After withdrawing your application or cancelling your offer, you need to submit your deposit refund request by going to Applications in uoZone and selecting Refund Request. The refund is not automatic; you need to request it.

I cancelled my application or withdrew my offer acceptance prior to the deadline. How do I obtain my refund?

See procedure to cancel your housing application. Once you have cancelled your acceptance or withdrawn from the University of Ottawa, you will also need to go in the Housing Portal and cancel or withdraw your residence application or offer. 

If any money is owed to you, you need to request the refund in uoZone, otherwise, the credit will remain in your student account.

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