Student Affairs

Housing and Transportation

Incoming Student Information for 2012-2013 Academic Year

General Housing Information in Costa Mesa, California

Whittier Law School does not own on- or off-campus housing nor does it “place” students in apartments or participate in any rental commitment or negotiations with managers or landlords. However, there is a wide range of housing available minutes from the campus. How can we help? The Office of Admissions provides resources to assist students to plan and find suitable off-campus housing accommodations. The law school maintains referral services to assist students with their search for roommates. The office also has reference maps, lists of apartment complexes, and information on bus schedules and other transportation options. In addition, the Office of Student and Alumni Affairs provides free telephone use for incoming students for making housing hunting calls (please call ahead to schedule an appointment).

Choosing an apartment

While it is possible to arrange housing in advance, either over the telephone or through the mail, we recommend that you visit the apartment sites in person before making a choice. Things to consider when choosing an apartment are price, location, distance from law school, length of the lease or rental agreement, whether or not it is furnished and if utilities are included.

Rental leases are available month-to-month, six months or one year in duration. Usually, apartment managers will offer a special move-in rate if a student signs a year long lease. The academic year (fall and spring semesters) is nine months long. Does it pay to negotiate with leasing managers? Always. The worst thing they can say is “no” to your request.

Beginning your search for housing can be overwhelming and time consuming. However, with a little planning, you should be able to secure housing within a reasonable amount of time. The following pages will give you a few suggestions to consider when beginning your search for housing.

When and how to begin looking for an apartment

We advise students moving to the area to arrive no later than four weeks prior to the beginning of classes. It is to your advantage if you can arrive sooner. Finding a place to live can take a few days to a couple of weeks depending on your budget and the amenities you desire in your housing accommodations. Please note that apartments listed for rent are usually advertised a month before they are available. WARNING: The first week of law classes is very condensed and requires a lot of time and attention. Worrying about housing is the last thing that you will want or have time to be concerned with.

Consider all sources when looking for rental housing. A good way to start is by stopping by the law school upon your arrival. The Office of Admissions provides resources to help you plan and complete your housing search. During June, July and August, the office maintains listings on the following:

  • Apartment complexes near the law school – this includes rental listings from property managers and/or privately owned dwellings. Average rents are in the $850 and up range for a studio, $1200-$1400 for an unfurnished, one-bedroom apartment, and $1300-$1700 for an unfurnished, two-bedroom apartment depending on amenities and location. Please note, most apartments for rent in Southern California do not include refrigerators. You may need to purchase one or rent one. Rentals are available on a monthly basis.
  • Roommates Wanted Listings – This information consists of students who already have housing (such as an apartment or house) and are looking for other students wishing to share the living arrangements. Students interested in renting will most likely need to provide their own furniture (such as bed, desk, chair, kitchen utensils, etc.). Average rents to share range from $625 to $900 per month plus utilities.
  • Roommate Referral List – Probably the best way to reduce your rent cost is to have a roommate. WLS does not “assign” roommates. As a service to those who may need help locating a roommate, WLS does coordinate roommate information for students wishing to locate a roommate and share living accommodations. From this list, you will be able to contact and make individual arrangements to share an apartment. Students who are interested in being placed on this roommate list must complete the Housing/Roommate Questionnaire Form included in this packet and return it to the Associate Dean for Student Services Office ASAP. Students who return a completed questionnaire will be placed on the roommate list and will receive a copy of it by mail or email.
  • Rooms for Rent – this list may include rooms for rent in an apartment or private home. Usually, it is the most economical housing available. Kitchen and household privileges are commonly available. Average rents range between $625 to $900 per month. Utilities except for telephone are usually included.
  • Apartment Relocation Services – These companies provide free personalized professional services in securing apartment rentals
  • Realtors – Students who prefer to rent a house or guest cottage may want to call a realtor in the area in which they wish to live.
  • Other sources – student bulletin boards – The student mailroom area in building three contains several bulletins boards. Students often post flyers there advertising that they are looking for a roommate(s).

One good source to check on your own is this website, which lists apartment complexes and rents:
My Apartment Map