Campus Life

Residence Procedures

New Students 
Wait-List Procedure
Residence Confirmation Deposit 
Residence Agreement 
Residence Privileges 
Room Change Requests 

Room Assignments 
Roommate Mediations
Terms of Occupancy
Withdrawing from Residence 

New Students

Students attending Saint Mary's for the first time who are interested in living in residence MUST complete a residence application through the online Housing Portal. Please see our portal instructions for the step-by-step process of how to apply. Applications for the current academic year are accepted continuously throughout the year, provided spaces are available.

Returning students also use the online Housing Portal to re-apply for residence. Application fees are non-refundable.

The $25 application fee must be paid with a credit card through the Housing Portal before you will be able to proceed with the application process.

An Overview of the Housing Application Process:

  • Student completes an application through the online Housing Portal and pays $25 application fee.
  • University processes application and emails the student an application package or wait-list package.
  • Student pays $500 Residence Confirmation Deposit and submits a signed copy of the applicable Residence (or Wait-List) Agreement / contract.
  • University assigns a residence bed space or a position on the wait-list.

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Wait-List Procedure

Each year the University receives more Residence Applications than there are available beds. Once the residences are full, students can only be conditionally accepted into residence and are offered an opportunity to be added to the Residence Wait-List.

There are two steps to be completed in order to confirm your acceptance of the Wait-List offer: 

  • Paying $500 Residence Confirmation Deposit
  • Submitting a signed copy of the "Wait-List Agreement" to Housing & Residence.

Positions on the Wait-List are determined be the DATE and TIME the University receives both the $500 deposit and a signed copy of the Wai-List Agreement. 

Once you have been placed on the wait-list there are two ways in which your position/number could improve: 

  • If someone currently assigned a room/bed space withdraws academically from the University. 
  • If someone ahead of you on the Wait-List withdraws their Residence Application.

If offered a bed space, you must acknowledge the acceptance of the offer within the specified deadline (determined when the offer is made). At this point you will be officially assigned to your bed space.


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$500 Residence Confirmation Deposit

Once a student has been accepted for residence, they will receive written notice that the University has made a commitment to provide a place of residence for the upcoming academic year. In return, students must confirm their intention to accept the University's offer by sending a Residence Confirmation Deposit of $500 to the University by May 15 to be included in the first round of rooms assignments. Deposits will continue to be accepted after May 15 and additional room assignments completed until our available bed spaces have all been filled.

Students accepted after this date will be given a period of time after acceptance in which to send their deposit. If the deposit is not received by the required date, the application is automatically withdrawn. 

Students who are offered a position on a wait-list for residence must send in a $500 confirmation deposit to secure their position on the wait-list. Students on the wait-list will be notified of their status. They will also be asked to sign a “Wait-List Agreement” before their deposit is processed.

Upon receipt, the $500 Residence Confirmation Deposit is held by the University and will be applied towards the second semester residence fees in January. Students who withdraw from the University forfeit the deposit.

The University will refund $250 of the deposit if the student cancels the room reservation in writing ( to the Housing & Residence Office by August 1. The balance of the deposit ($250) is neither refundable nor transferable. The $500 Residence Confirmation Deposit is neither refundable nor transferable after August 1.



In the case that COVID-19-related travel restrictions and/or travel bans remain in place and prevent individuals from coming to Halifax for the Fall 2020 semester, the $500 Residence Confirmation Deposit will be fully refundable.



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Residence Agreement

Prior to entering the residence, each student is required to sign a Residence Agreement. 

This is a contract between the student and the University outlining the student's obligations with regard to the terms of occupancy, conduct, payment of fees, etc.

Students under 19 years of age must have the Residence Agreement signed by a parent or guardian.

Students may not be permitted to move into residence until they have completed and signed the agreement. If a student fails to sign a Residence Agreement, for whatever reason, prior to taking up residency, the terms and conditions as outlined in the Residence Handbook will be the basis of the contract between the University and the student. (“Student” for the purpose of the Agreement, refers to anyone attending an educational institution, whether it is Saint Mary's University or another institution).

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Residence Privileges

The University reserves the right to refuse an application for residence accommodations, to cancel/suspend residence privileges at any time, and to reassign students to other rooms for reasons it deems appropriate.

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Normally, students must be in full-time attendance at Saint Mary's University in order to be eligible for residence accommodation. Students who are registered as part-time may be considered for residence at the discretion of the Director, Housing & Conference Services. Students whose status changes from full-time to part-time during the academic year must notify Housing & Residence in writing (

The University reserves the right to refuse an application for residence accommodation, to cancel residence privileges at any time, and to reassign students to other rooms for reasons it deems appropriate.

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Room Change Requests

Residence students are expected to occupy the room and bed space assigned to them by 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 Housing & Residence.

Room Change Request Forms are available in the Housing & Residence Office approximately two weeks after classes begin. Requests for room changes will NOT be considered before this time.

Students may be required to participate in a mediation session with their roommate or suite (if applicable) before a room change is approved. 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) and are also subject to the availability to alternate accommodation.

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Room Assignments

Rooms in residence are assigned on a priority basis taking into consideration (but not guaranteeing) the specific requests of those applying. Students must occupy the room and bed space assigned to them by Housing & Residence. Room assignments for September will not be completed until after the $500 Residence Confirmation deposit deadline of May 15th, are are usually released in mid- to late-July.

The number of single rooms is limited, so first consideration is given to returning residence students who meet the requirements to retain their seniority. After these returning student requests have been accommodated, new students will be considered for single rooms, but are usually assigned to doubles or apartments.

Students applying for double rooms or apartments are encouraged to apply in pairs or groups of four respectively. Both roommates (or all four in the case of an apartment) must request each other before Housing & Residence will place them together. Housing & Residence will assign roommates to those without specific requests, taking into consideration the information presented on their application.

Returning Students: Students returning to residence are given priority/seniority over other applicants only if they submit their complete application before the Room Priority Deadline (March 1) and pay the $500 Residence Confirmation Deposit by May 15. Applications from returning students received after March 1 deadline will be considered if there are still spaces available, and priority will be based on the date their application and deposit are received.

New Students: Students accepted into residence for the first time are normally assigned based on the date(s) their completed application and Residence Confirmation Deposit are received, but Housing & Residence reserves to assign spaces as deemed apprpriate.

Room assignments for September are normally emailed out in mid- to late-July.

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Roommate Mediations

Roommates sometimes find it awkward or uncomfortable to speak directly to their roommate about issues 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. RAs also make sure meetings stay on track and that meeting guidelines are being followed.

A typical mediation session often looks as follows:

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

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Seniority/Priority for Room Assignments

Priority for residence room assignments is normally granted to returning students who:

  1. Re-apply for residence before March 1, and
  2. Pay the $500 Residence Confirmation Deposit before the May 15 deadline.

If either of these conditions is not met, a returning student forfeits their seniority for room preference.

Rooms are NOT assigned to returning students simply based on who applied first. Housing & Residence also reservces the right to assign bed spaces based as needs dictate.

First Priority for a room or apartment goes to the student(s) who lived there the previous year, provided they have renewwed their room / bed space by the applicable deadline.

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Terms of Occupancy

Move-In Schedule 
Students who have been accepted for residence accommodation will be sent a schedule of move-in dates and times and they must plan to arrive according to this schedule. The University will not accept responsibility for students who arrive outside the scheduled dates and times and it is the student's responsibility to find and pay for temporary accommodation until the next scheduled move-in time. Residence move-in usually takes place early in September (2-3 days before classes begin). Residence move-in for the second semester takes place in early January.

Occupancy Period 
The occupancy period for each semester begins with the scheduled date and time for residence move-in and concludes 24 hours after each student's last examination according to the formal examination schedule prepared by the Registrar. Therefore, the occupancy period may be different for each individual student. The occupancy period extends for the entire academic year as per the 8-month Residence Agreement.

December Holiday Break 
The occupancy period does not include the December Holiday Break. Students who are granted permission to remain in residence during this period are charged a Stay-Over fee (see Housing & Residence for more information) to be paid in advance. They may be required to temporarily move into a room other than the one assigned to them for the academic year. All students who are continuing their studies at the University are permitted to leave their belongings in their room over the holiday period.

Extra Days 
Under normal circumstances, students are not permitted to arrive earlier, or stay later, than the period described in the terms of occupancy. All requests for additional time must be made in writing to the Director of Residence. If extensions are granted, additional nightly fees apply.

For more information, contact us via email at

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Withdrawing from Residence

Students who wish to withdraw from residence MUST inform Housing & Residence in writing (, complete appropriate processes outlined by Housing & Residence, AND appropriately check-out / return their key(s) and access card(s) through the Loyola Residence Desk.

Students should consult the Residence Agreement and/or the Residence Handbook for specifics about the policies pertaining the withdrawing from residence, including associated fees / penalties.

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