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Finding off-campus housing as a University of Hawaii student can be an exciting yet daunting task. With so many options to choose from, it’s important to consider all the factors that will determine whether a rental is the right fit. This comprehensive guide will provide an in-depth look at everything you need to know about securing off-campus housing in Honolulu and the surrounding areas.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Some top neighborhoods for University of Hawaii students looking for off-campus housing include Waikiki, Ala Moana, Makiki, and Manoa. Be prepared to pay around $1,000-$2,000 per month for a studio or one-bedroom. Start your search 2-3 months in advance.

Popular Neighborhoods for UHM Students


Waikiki is one of the most popular neighborhoods for University of Hawaii at Manoa (UHM) students. Its close proximity to the beautiful beaches and vibrant nightlife make it an attractive choice for students looking for a lively and exciting atmosphere. Additionally, Waikiki offers a range of housing options, including high-rise apartments, condominiums, and shared houses, making it suitable for different budgets and preferences.

Ala Moana

Located adjacent to Waikiki, Ala Moana is another neighborhood popular among UHM students. It is particularly attractive for those who prefer a quieter and more upscale environment. Ala Moana is known for its world-class shopping center, beautiful parks, and access to the ocean. The neighborhood offers a mix of housing options, including luxury apartments and townhouses.


Makiki is a residential neighborhood located just north of downtown Honolulu, making it a convenient choice for UHM students. It is known for its tree-lined streets, local parks, and proximity to popular hiking trails like Manoa Falls. Makiki offers a range of housing options, from affordable apartments to single-family homes, making it suitable for students with different budgets.


Manoa is a neighborhood located just east of the University of Hawaii at Manoa campus, making it a popular choice for students who prefer to live closer to the university. The area is known for its lush greenery, quiet streets, and community feel. Manoa offers a mix of housing options, including apartments, townhouses, and single-family homes.

When choosing a neighborhood for off-campus housing, it is important to consider factors such as proximity to campus, transportation options, cost of living, and the atmosphere that best suits your lifestyle. Exploring these popular neighborhoods can help you find the perfect place to call home during your time at UHM.

Apartment Hunting Tips

Start Your Search Early

When it comes to finding off-campus housing near the University of Hawaii, it’s essential to start your search early. The demand for housing in the area can be high, especially at the beginning of the semester. By starting your search early, you’ll have a better chance of finding the perfect apartment that meets your needs and preferences.

Determine Your Budget

Before you begin your apartment hunt, it’s crucial to determine your budget. Consider how much you can comfortably afford to spend on rent each month, taking into account other expenses such as utilities, transportation, and groceries. This will help you narrow down your options and ensure you don’t overspend on housing.

Look Beyond the Major Rental Sites

While major rental sites like Zillow and can be helpful, don’t limit yourself to just these platforms. Explore other resources such as local classifieds, university bulletin boards, and community Facebook groups. These alternative sources may have hidden gems that aren’t listed on the mainstream rental sites.

Ask About Amenities and Utilities

When contacting potential landlords or property managers, be sure to ask about the amenities and utilities included in the rental. Some apartments may offer amenities such as a fitness center, laundry facilities, or parking. Additionally, inquire about what utilities are included in the rent, such as water, electricity, or internet. This information will help you make an informed decision and avoid any unexpected expenses.

Types of Rentals Available


Apartments are a popular choice for students looking for off-campus housing near the University of Hawaii. They offer convenience, affordability, and often come fully furnished. Many apartments in the area are specifically designed to cater to the needs of college students, with amenities such as study lounges, fitness centers, and laundry facilities. Rent prices for apartments vary depending on factors such as location, size, and amenities. It’s important to start your search early and consider factors such as proximity to campus, transportation options, and budget when choosing an apartment.


Condos are another option to consider when looking for off-campus housing near the University of Hawaii. These units are typically owned by individual landlords and offer more privacy and independence compared to apartments. Condos often provide a range of amenities, such as swimming pools, parking spaces, and communal areas. Rental prices for condos can vary depending on the location and size of the unit. Some condos may also require additional fees for utilities or maintenance. It’s important to carefully review the terms of the lease and understand any additional costs before signing a rental agreement.

Single Family Homes

If you prefer a more spacious and private living arrangement, renting a single-family home might be the right choice for you. Single-family homes near the University of Hawaii offer more room for larger groups or families and provide a sense of community. Rental prices for single-family homes can vary depending on factors such as location, size, and amenities. Keep in mind that renting a single-family home often requires more responsibility in terms of maintenance and utilities. It’s important to factor in these additional costs when considering this type of rental.

When searching for off-campus housing, it’s always a good idea to utilize online resources, such as Zillow or, to browse available options and compare prices. Additionally, consider reaching out to local real estate agents or student housing services for assistance in finding the right rental for your needs. Remember to start your search early and consider factors such as location, budget, and amenities to ensure a smooth transition into off-campus living.

Transportation Considerations

Proximity to Campus

When looking for off-campus housing near the University of Hawaii, one of the most important factors to consider is proximity to campus. Living close to campus can greatly reduce commuting time, allowing you to spend more time on your studies and extracurricular activities. It is advisable to look for housing options that are within walking or biking distance to the campus. This not only saves time but also helps you save on transportation costs. Additionally, being close to campus allows you to easily access campus facilities such as libraries, sports facilities, and student services.

Public Transportation Accessibility

If living within walking or biking distance to campus is not feasible, it is essential to consider the accessibility of public transportation. The University of Hawaii is well-connected to the public transportation system, making it convenient for students to commute to and from campus. The Oahu Transit Services operates a bus system that serves the university and surrounding areas. The bus routes are designed to cater to the needs of students, with frequent stops near the campus. Utilizing public transportation not only provides convenience but also helps reduce your carbon footprint.

Biking and Walking Options

With its pleasant weather and beautiful surroundings, the University of Hawaii campus is a great place for biking and walking. If you enjoy an active lifestyle, consider finding off-campus housing that offers biking and walking options. Many housing options in the area provide bike storage facilities or are located near bike lanes, making it easy and safe to commute by bike. Walking is also a popular mode of transportation among students due to the compact size of the campus and the availability of sidewalks. Taking advantage of these options allows you to stay fit, save money on transportation, and reduce your impact on the environment.

When considering transportation options for off-campus housing near the University of Hawaii, it is important to prioritize proximity to campus, accessibility of public transportation, and availability of biking and walking options. By considering these factors, you can find housing that not only meets your needs but also enhances your overall college experience. For more information on public transportation routes and schedules, visit the official website of the Oahu Transit Services at

Student Discounts and Resources

When it comes to finding affordable off-campus housing near the University of Hawaii, students have access to a variety of resources and discounts that can help make the process easier. Whether you’re looking for roommates, student apartment complexes, or financial aid for housing, there are options available to fit your needs and budget.

Looking for Roommates

If you’re interested in finding roommates to share the cost of off-campus housing, there are several resources available to help you connect with other students. Websites like Roomsurf and allow you to create a profile and search for potential roommates based on shared interests, lifestyle preferences, and academic majors. This can not only help you save money on rent, but also provide you with the opportunity to form friendships and create a supportive living environment.

Student Apartment Complexes

Many apartment complexes near the University of Hawaii offer student-specific housing options with discounted rates. These complexes are designed with students in mind and often provide amenities such as study lounges, fitness centers, and social events. Some popular student apartment complexes near the university include Hale Mahana, Gateway West, and University Vista. These complexes are located within close proximity to campus, making it convenient for students to commute to classes.

Financial Aid for Housing

For students who need financial assistance with off-campus housing, the University of Hawaii offers various resources and programs. The Office of Financial Aid provides information on scholarships, grants, and work-study opportunities that can help offset the cost of housing. Additionally, students may be eligible for federal or state housing programs, such as the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program or the Hawaii Public Housing Authority. It’s important to research and apply for these programs in advance to ensure you receive the necessary support.


Finding the right off-campus housing for your needs and budget as a University of Hawaii student involves some research and planning ahead. Focus your search on popular student neighborhoods like Waikiki and Manoa, while utilizing online listings and resources tailored for UHM students. With the right information and preparation, you can secure affordable, comfortable, and convenient housing near campus.

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