It is recommended that you begin your search three to four months in advance. Begin your search online through stonybrook.edu/offcampusliving. Follow the link to Off-Campus Housing, which has a searchable database of legal properties to rent.
When you have found something that seems promising, check out the regulations (zoning laws and town codes) of the town your housing is in. Links are available on the Off-Campus Living website to help you learn more specifics about your township’s codes. Know what the requirements are before you move in so you can avoid fines or even eviction.
When you arrange to visit the property, bring a trusted friend or family member with you to help you do a thorough review. The Off-Campus Living website provides printable versions of Inventory and Renter’s Checklists. These are also very helpful to bring along.
- How much can I afford per month for rent?
- Do I want a roommate(s)?
- How long will it take me to get to school, work, etc.?
- What type of transportation will I require?
- Can I afford the cost of utilities, food, gas, cable, etc.?
- What is the neighborhood like?
- Who will be responsible for damages? Repairs? Landscaping?
Please note that Off-Campus Housing does not inspect, approve or supervise any premises listed with its service. The University does not become party to private landlord–tenant matters.
Please note that the following steps are suggestions. You do not have to follow these steps in the order that they are laid out. You do not have to take each and every step outlined. These are only recommendations.
- Know your budget (loans, job earnings, parental support)
- Assess whether rental units are furnished or unfurnished
- Assess whether utilities are included or excluded
- Evaluate the commuting situation (car, bus, train)
- Establish when the landlord can enter the property
- Determine who takes care of and pays for any repairs, if necessary
- Assess the parking situation
- Establish who shovels and clears any driveways of snow
- Assess rental units for safety
- Evaluate whether the rental unit is legal or illegal; all listings on the Off Campus Housing website are certified as legal housing by their respective townships
- You may also want to meet with them--this will likely happen when you visit the house (we strongly suggest that you see all rental units in person before signing a lease and moving in)
- Print out and bring a copy of the Renter's Checklist when you visit properties
Don't forget to ask about
When and how payment is due
You do not have to, nor do we suggest that you sign a lease when you first get it
Do not be afraid to ask questions or propose changes
- Only sign the lease once both parties, prospective tenant and prospective landlord, understand and have agreed to the terms in the lease
Make sure you get a copy of the lease
- Make sure it is clear when and how all types of payments will be made (lease, utilities, etc.)
- Electric, PSEG: 1 (631) 755-6000
- Gas, National Grid: 1 (800) 930-5003
- Trash service
- Water Service
- Will you use moving services? Or will you rent a UHaul?
- Do you need to purchase furniture? Will you need to schedule deliveries?
Verizon, not available in the Town of Brookhaven
Optimum, available in the Town of Brookhaven