Wake Forest has a six-semester residency requirement and is committed to providing eight semesters of on-campus housing for residential students in good standing. 

  • Students are expected to fulfill the residency requirement consecutively, barring time away from the University (e.g. CES, withdrawal).  
  • Students living in University housing or studying abroad during the fall or spring semester earn a housing credit as of the census date each semester. 
  • Students who are away from the University (e.g. CES, withdrawal) as of the census date do not earn a housing credit for that semester. 
  • Summer sessions do not count toward the residency requirement.
  • Transfer students will receive a housing credit for each fall or spring semester completed at full-time status at another institution. Residence Life and Housing will work with the Office of the University Registrar on these evaluations. 

Students may request an exception to the residency requirement by submitting a written request to Residence Life and Housing at housing@wfu.edu should they meet one of the following criteria:

  • Living with a Parent/Guardian at their permanent residence in Forsyth County or a contiguous county
  • Living with a parent or guardian will impact a student's cost of attendance and students receiving financial aid should follow up with Student Financial Aid to determine the impact on financial aid eligibility.   
  • Living with and having parental responsibilities for a minor child in Forsyth County or a contiguous count
  • Married and living with their spouse in Forsyth County or a contiguous county
  • 24 years of age or older
  • Financially independent as determined by Student Financial Aid

The University’s commitment to providing eight semesters of on-campus housing for residential students in good standing. Students who are released from or have fulfilled their residency requirement may request a return to housing on campus based on availability.

For more information about the Office of Residence Life and Housing as well as their processes and policies, please visit their website at rlh.wfu.edu.

Off-Campus Housing

Students who have earned four housing credits and wish to be released from the University’s residency requirement early may enter the Off-Campus Lottery. This indicates a desire to live off-campus prior to fulfilling the residency requirement. As the Office of Residence Life and Housing finalizes the number of students able to live off-campus, they will use a random selection process to release the appropriate number of students.

Students who have earned six housing credits will have the opportunity to declare off-campus intent for future academic years as a part of the University's housing selection process. 

For more information on the lottery process and other policies related to living off-campus, please visit the Office of Residence Life and Housing's Off-Campus Housing page.

Off-Campus Address Registration and Orientation

Students approved to live off-campus must register their residential address and complete an online orientation course thereby declaring their compliance with the University’s off-campus expectations. Additionally, if a student changes residences, they must re-register their address and check to make sure that the new residence is registered. 

Students wishing to live in single-family dwellings must live in registered properties. City of Winston-Salem ordinances state that there shall be no more than four (4) individuals that are not related by blood, adoption, or marriage living together in a single-family dwelling. Residence Life and Housing will monitor the number of students registered in each single-family dwelling and will, at no time, grant permission to any individual(s) to exceed the city ordinance.