Residence FAQs

‌‌Vaccination Requirements for Residence

ALL students, staff, and faculty are now required to be fully vaccinated. This includes all individuals living residence at Saint Mary’s. The full policy is available online.

ALL residents MUST be fully vaccinated prior to moving in to residence and are required to provide proof of their fully vaccinated status in order to live in residence. 


Who must isolate or quarantine in residence? When?

Due to COVID-19, there will be times when individuals need to quarantine or isolate. You are required to initiate our residence self-isolation processes if:


  1. You have symptoms of COVID-19, even if mild. 
  2. You have been diagnosed with COVID-19, or are waiting to hear the results of a lab test for COVID-19
  3. You have had close contact with someone who has a suspected, probable, or confirmed case of COVID-19.
  4. You have been told by the public health authority that you may have been exposed to COVID-19.


What if a residence student tests positive for COVID or needs to isolate during the year?

If you need to isolate during the academic year based one of the situations outlined above, including if you test positive for COVID, you should follow the steps outlined below:


Step 1: Go to our form and provide the required information, as outlined. This will include your Name, A#, Residence Building, Room #, Contact Information (email and phone), Dietary Restrictions, and details about why you are isolating / self-isolating.

Housing staff will then contact you via email regarding: 1. Meal & Hydration Package delivery, 2. Trash collection, and 3. Resources and supports for self-isolating individuals.

We ask that you follow the self-isolation guidelines outlined on the SMU webpage where you found and filled out the intake form (, which include staying in your own room in your apartment, using your own apartment washroom / shower only, and avoiding contact with others (including your apartment-mates).

We ask that you follow up on any instructions provided by Public Health, including getting your testing done when directed, as soon as possible and keep us informed (by return email) as to what they advise.

Please review the applicable information regarding your situation available via these links:


Step 2: Stay in your room

  • Do not go to any other part of residence other than your room and bathroom. (Or the room / bathroom to which you have been assigned / relocated.
  • Do not attend work or social gatherings until the isolation period has concluded and you have not had any symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Do not use common areas of the residence complex, including the dining hall, laundry rooms, residence mailroom, or Loyola Residence Desk.
  • Limit contact as much as possible with others. Stay two metres (six feet) away from others at all times and wear a mask / face covering at all times when you not alone in your room.
  • Avoid sharing household items. Do not share drinking glasses, towels, eating utensils, bedding or any other items until you are no longer asked to isolate / self-isolate.
  • Keep your surroundings (such as doorknobs and bathroom surfaces) clean, with a standard household disinfectant such as Clorox wipes (supplies will be provided). Wash your hands after cleaning the area.
  • Monitor yourself for COVID-19 symptoms.


Step 3: Stay connected

It is important to stay connected with friends and family by text, email and social media. This will help reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation. Monitor your mental health and wellbeing. If you need support, Residence Life can help connect you to counselling services. Be sure to check your email regularly for updates, resources, and direction from staff. Contact staff or the Loyola Residence Desk (902.420.5591) if your condition changes / worsens.


How does travel-related isolation / quarantine for residence students work?

ALL residents MUST be fully vaccinated prior to moving in to residence and are required to provide proof of their fully vaccinated status in order to live in residence. 

The university does not provide or arrange isolation / quarantine accommodations for individuals who require them based on travel.

Fully vaccinated residents required to isolate upon arrival while they awai testing results must do so off-campus and may only check into residence once they have received their negative result.

If you have an approved exemption and need to quarantine, you must arrange to quarantine off-campus and complete the required quarantine period off-campus.

Individuals are responsible for any costs associated with required travel isolations / quarantines.



How will COVID-19 impact residence?

We have eliminated double rooms for the 2021-2022 academic year. This means all bed spaces in residence will be either single or super-single rooms (and will be billed at the associated rate). For example: double rooms in Loyola, Vanier, and Rice will be assigned and charged out as super-singles. If you are assigned to a double room, it is actually a super-single (1 resident with the double bedroom to themselves) and will be billed as such.

COVID-19-related residence policies and community expectations are in place at present and we expect this will also be the case for the 2021-2022 academic year as well. These community standards / regulations will continue to develop based on Public Health guidance and other information as it becomes available. As noted in the Residence Handbook, key COVID-19-related policies in place this year to ensure the safety and wellbeing of community members include:

  • All residents are required to be fully vaccinated, unless they have a verified exemption, as approved by the university. Individuals who are not fully vaccinated and who to not have a verified exemption will be required to vacate their on-campus residence space and find alternate accommodations.
  • All individuals are required to sanitize their hands at stations located by residence entrances when entering / returning to their buildings.
  • All individuals are required to properly wear a mask at all times when in any and all residence common spaces, hallways, elevators, laundry rooms, etc. (i.e. at all times when not in their own rooms) in the residence complex, regardless of distancing. All residents are also required to wear a mask when staff or contractors are entering their room or apartment.
  • All residents are required to abide by any and all University, federal and provincial government, Public Health, and NS Health authority COVID-19-related directives, guidelines, and regulations at all times.
  • In the event of a fire alarm / building evacuation, individuals should exit the building as required, while ensuring they are wearing a mask at all times. Isolation / quarantine individuals should ensure they maintain appropriate distancing from others, including when re-entry to residence is allowed and should delay their re-entry to help facilitate this.

Violations of COVID-19 policies will result in outcomes including, but not limited to, Notices of Fine. Any concerns / violations can be reported to the Loyola Residence Desk 24/7.

Mandatory meal plans are required for ALL residence spaces for the 2021-2022 academic year, including those in Rice and Loyola South Senior Apartments. Among other things, this ensures ALL residents have access to isolation meals through SMU Dining, if required. Residents in Rice and Loyola South will be defaulted to the Easy 100 Plan, but can upgrade to other listed plans. Residents of Loyola North and Vanier will be defaulted to the 7 Day All Access Plan.


How do I apply for residence?

Students attending Saint Mary's for the first time who are interested in living in residence can apply online through our Housing Portal. Learn more on our Apply for Residence page.

Please note: If you are a TLC (The Language Centre) student, contact TLC for more information in this regard.


What are my residence fees and how do I pay them?

Residence fees get applied to your student account for the fall term in mid- to late-August (mid-December for the winter term) and are paid the same way you would pay for your tuition. The payment options are available on the Service Centre webpage. 

Depending on the type of room / bed space you have been assigned in residence, your room fees will differ. You can locate room fee specifics HERE.


Can a first-year student get a single room?

Yes, if a student applies early, their chances of being placed in the residence of their choice (as well as their preferred room type) increases. (PLEASE NOTE: this year we have elimnated double rooms due to COVID-19.)


How many people will be living on my floor?

In Loyola, no more than 23 students will live on your floor. However, this residence is divided into four suites, so you will only share your bathroom with up to five other students.

In Vanier, no more than 18 students will live on your floor. However, this residence is divided into four suites as well, so you will only share your bathroom with a maximum of four other students.

In Rice, no more than 23 students will live on your floor. However, this residence is apartment-style, so you will only share your bathroom with two or three other students.


What size is my bed?

Please see the chart below for a general guide to bed / mattress sizes in our residences.


Room Type


Twin Long


Loyola North Single / Double




Loyola South Senior Apt Single




Loyola South Senior Apt Super Single




Vanier Single / Double




Vanier Senior Apt Single




Vanier Senior Apt Super Single




Rice Single / Double




Rice Super Single





What type of residence floor am I on?

Please see the chart below for a general guide to floor types / designations in our residences for 2021-2022. Any floor NOT listed in the table below is designated a regular co-ed floor for the 2021-2022 academic year.

Floor Quiet Alcohol-Free Coed All- Female All-Male
Loyola South 09 x x x    
Loyola South 10 x x x    
Loyola South 19 x x   x  
Loyola South 20 x x   x  
Loyola North 04 x   x    
Loyola North 05 x   x    
Loyola North 09 x x x    
Loyola North 10 x x x    
Loyola North 13       x  
Loyola North 15   x x    
Loyola North 19 x x   x  
Loyola North 20 x x   x  
Loyola North 21 x   x    
Loyola North 22 x   x    
Rice 02 x x     x
Rice 03 x x     x
Rice 06       x  
Rice 10 x x x    
Rice 14 x   x    
Rice 15 x   x    
Rice 16 x   x    
Rice 17 x   x    


Can I see my residence room before I move in? 

Unfortunately, given residence operates throughout the year (including the summer months) and the complex logistics involved in turning over 1000 beds, we are not able to show residents their specifically assigned bed spaces/rooms prior to their assigned check in dates.

However, we do have 2 dedicated tour rooms available for year-round viewing: a Loyola Single and a Vanier Double. Individuals interested in tours / rooms viewings can arrange them through the Centre for New Students. The Centre for New Students can be reached by calling 902.491.8691, by emailing or by stopping by the Centre located in McNally Main Building.


How do I do laundry in residence?

Our laundry machines are card-operated. There are card vending and loading machines in front of the Loyola Residence Desk that allow residents to purchase a loadable laundry card and then add value (money) to their laundry card using a credit or debit card. Residents can also register online through Coinamatic, our laundry provider, to add value online at Laundry cards are available for purchase during move-in weekend in the fall and the card vending machine allows residents to purchase a replacement card throughout the year.


How do I receive mail in residence?

The Residence Mailroom is located in Henn Alley. Residents pick up their mail from the Residence Mailroom. A mail clerk is available at certain times to distribute packages which do not fit into individual resident mailboxes. Mailroom hours of operation are posted outside the mailroom.

The Residence Mailroom is NOT able to accept any mail, packages, or other items that require a 19+ signature. Anything delivered to the Residence Mailroom requiring a 19+ signature will be immediately returned to sender.

The Residence Mailroom / Housing Office / Loyola Residence Desk / University are NOT able to accept any delivered items, perishable mail, packages, or other deliveries / items (such as prepared meal boxes, flowers, etc.).

Unfortunately, we are not able to hold or forward mail for individuals after they have checked out of residence. Before checking out of residence, individuals should make sure they have provided a forwarding mail address to anyone who needs it and / or redirected mail / parcels appropriately.



The mailing address for students in all three residences is:

Full Name

Room #, Residence / Building Name

Saint Mary's University

923 Robie Street

Halifax, NS  B3H 3C3


Individuals should ensure that mail is properly addressed. Please note that improperly or incorrectly addressed mail, including mail addressed to individuals not currently listed as living in residence, will be returned to sender.



Individuals ordering from Amazon should strongly consider having their Amazon orders shipped to a nearby Amazon Pick Up Location, such as the one located on Fenwick Street near the Saint Mary’s campus: FENWICK PO, 5595 FENWICK ST, HALIFAX, NS, B3H 1R0 Canada. This shipping option is available when checking out with Amazon. Using this method will help reduce issues associated with the courier delivery services Amazon often uses.



Packages and deliveries from couriers (FedEx, UPS, DHS, Intelcom, etc.) must be collected directly from the courier or delivery service by the resident receiving them. The Residence Mailroom / Housing Office / Loyola Residence Desk / University Mailroom are NOT able to accept any delivery service or courier-delivered items.

Individuals should ensure they have provided a phone number to the courier or delivery service (so they can be contacted by delivery personal) and courier-delivered items are able to be picked up immediately at the time of delivery from the courier / delivery service by the resident in question. If a resident is unable to accept their courier delivery at the time it arrives at the residence complex, the resident and the courier will have to make alternate arrangements for a new delivery time.

The address to provide for couriers and delivery services is:

Full Name

Room #, Residence / Building Name

Saint Mary's University

5865 Gorsebrook Avenue

Halifax, NS  B3H 3C2


What can I do if I am not getting along with my roommate or suitemates?

Sometimes roommates find it awkward or uncomfortable to speak directly to their roommate about issues that are occurring in their room or on the floor. The mediation process is a great way for roommates to directly and respectfully address their concerns with each other in a safe, structured manner. Residence Assistants (RAs) have received training to facilitate this type of confidential meeting in an unbiased, non-confrontational, and non-judgemental manner. They will also make sure the meeting stays on track and that the meeting guidelines are being followed. Here is a brief overview of a typical mediation session:

  • RA reviews guidelines for meeting (i.e. one person talks at a time, be respectful, no interrupting, no name-calling, telling the truth, etc.).
  • First person states their concerns - RA clarifies and paraphrases.
  • Second person states their concerns - RA clarifies and paraphrases.
  • Both parties agree upon the key issues that need to be addressed.
  • Both parties work together to brainstorm ideas to resolve each issue, one at a time.
  • RA writes up what was agreed upon - roommate contract - and each party signs.
  • Either party can request to re-visit agreement in the future, if it is not working.


How can I apply for a room change?

Residents are expected to occupy the room and bed assigned to them by the Housing & Residence. However, if students are experiencing problems with their particular room assignment they can apply for a room change. 

All room changes must be pre-authorized by the Housing & Residence.

Room change request information is available from the Housing & Residence Office (LR114) in late September, via email, a few weeks after classes begin. Request for room changes will not be considered before this time. 

Room changes are prioritized at the discretion of Housing & Residence, based on the needs of all those who apply (not just on a first come first serve basis). Naturally, all room changes are also subject to the availability of alternate accommodation. Unfortunately, not all room change requests are able to be accommodated.


What is a Notice of Fine (NOF)?

A NOF is a monetary fine, normally ranging from $50.00 to $100.00, issued for minor violations of Residence policies and/or community standards (which are outlined in the Residence Code of Conduct in the Residence Handbook). These fines are issued by Residence Staff, Residence Services Officers (RSOs), Residence Assistants (RAs), and/or Residence Coordinators (RCs).

The NOF becomes payable to a student’s account after four (4) business days (and is payable online using self-service banner or in person to the Service Centre).

A student who is issued four NOFs within one Academic year will have their residence status reviewed and may be dismissed from Residence at the discretion of the Director.


Can I appeal an NOF I feel I did not deserve?

If you feel that you are receiving a NOF undeservingly it is in your best interest not to dispute the fact with the Residence Staff issuing the fine. Arguing with the Residence Staff members may result in an additional fine for being uncooperative with Residence Staff.

Once you receive your copy of the NOF, please refer to the appeal instructions noted.

Please review the Residence Handbook, including the Residence Code of Conduct, to find out what your rights and responsibilities are as a resident.


Can I have overnight guests in my residence room? 

Normally, yes, you may have overnights guests, however, you must remember that you are responsible for your guest's actions while they are in residence. They are subject to residence Rules and Regulations as well. Any misconduct of your guest will be your responsibility.

It is the basic right of every student to have privacy in his/her assigned room. No student should feel obligated to relinquish this right. In a shared accommodation, overnight guests and visitors are allowed only with the consent of all roommates. Further to this, an overnight guest or visitor may be asked at any time to leave the room in the interest of preserving privacy.

Your guest is allowed in residence for two consecutive nights (assuming you have the consent of all roommates). Should you wish to have them stay longer, you must contact Housing & Residence to gain permission.


Where can I find information about living off-campus?

Student Affairs and Services and SMUSA have collaborated to put together a webpage with some off-campus housing resources, links, and tips.


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