Rice Unconventional Wisdom

Housing

Temporary Housing - Hotels, Hostels & Dormitories

Information on area hotels is available at http://explore.rice.edu/explore/Hotel.asp.

Write or call ahead to make reservations. All prices are subject to change. 17% taxes are added to all hotel rates. If you would like the hotel discount for university students and personnel, please be sure to state this when making a reservation. Most hotels require paid reservations in advance or a major credit card account number. Unpaid reservations are usually lost after 6:00 p.m., unless the hotel is notified in advance of your late arrival plans.

Most hotels have free swimming pools and 24-hour coffee shop or restaurant. Some have free shuttle bus services. Some allow children to stay at no extra charge. The term “double” usually means two double beds. A “single” usually costs less for a couple. The cost of a “single” and a charge for an extra person may be less than that for the “double.”

Near Houston Bush Intercontinental Airport:

  • Holiday Inn - Airport - 1522 JFK Boulevard, Houston, TX 77032. Tel.: 281-449-2311 or toll free 800-465-4329. Complimentary shuttle to airport (4:30AM-Midnight) and Deer Park Mall.
  • Doubletree Hotel Intercontinental - 15747 JFK Blvd., Houston, TX 77032. Tel: 281-848-4000.

Near Hobby Airport:

  • Econo Lodge Hobby Airport - 8381 Broadway Street, Houston, TX 77061. Tel: 713-645-1333. Free continental breakfast.
  • Days Inn Hobby Airport - 1505 College Ave., Houston, TX 77587. Tel: 713-946-5900.
  • Hilton Hobby Airport - 8181 Airport Blvd., Houston, TX 77061. Tel: 713-645-3000.

Youth Hostel/Dormitory available at these locations:
(**Note: Hostels in the US may not be comparable to those in Europe)

  • Houston International Hostel - 5302 Crawford at Oakdale, Houston, TX. Tel.: 713-523-1009. Registration is between 8:00 – 10:00 a.m. or 5:00 – 11:00 p.m., or by arrangement. Call only during office hours. Reservations are available, but not required. It is located at a reasonable walking distance to Rice.
  • International House Dormitory - 2719 Capitol Ave, Houston, TX 77003. Tel.: 713-237-8443. Space is limited. Call in advance. However, safety is a concern in downtown Houston, especially in the evening.

Permanent Housing

On-campus housing - available for undergraduate students
Resources: http://housing.rice.edu/

Off-campus housing - Apartments and rooms for rent far from Rice University may be less expensive than those nearby. Public transportation may be a problem with the more distant locations, however. If you do not own a car, you should find out about bus routes before selecting a place to live.

Rates vary according to location, neighborhood, amenities provided, age, and condition of the complex. The average one bedroom unfurnished (without furniture, but with appliances) apartment near campus costs approximately $750-$1650 a month. Renting with furniture adds approximately $300 more per month. An unfurnished two-bedroom apartment has an average cost of approximately $950-$1500. Utilities (gas, electricity and telephone) are usually charged separately and add approximately $150 to your monthly costs. Students often prefer to share an apartment in order to save money. Occasionally, rooms in homes are available at a lower cost.

The standard apartment lease is for a period of six or twelve months. A small number of apartments also provide short-term leases, either furnished or unfurnished. You will be expected to pay a deposit of approximately $500 when you sign a lease on an apartment in addition to paying the first and last month’s rent in advance. If you break your lease or damage the apartment, you will lose your deposit. Be very careful before signing anything. Get advice from current students and from your academic department. Be sure to get as much information as you can before you sign in a contract. Read your lease carefully!

In the U.S., furnished apartments do not include bed linens, towels, silverware, china, or kitchen utensils (pots and pans). Basic items will cost you $350 or more to purchase. Be sure to include “garage sales” and discount stores in your search in order to save money on many household items. Graduate international students benefit from the use of the Graduate Student Loan Closet, which allows them to borrow used household items collected by the Faculty Women’s Club. This service is available at the beginning of the academic semesters and thereafter by arrangement with the project’s coordinator.


Recommended Resources
http://gradapts.rice.edu/ - Rice Graduate Apartments (713-348-4723).

Graduate students should have already received information regarding this option - if you wish to stay there, you need to return the application and pay a deposit as soon as possible. It is located on 1515 Bissonnet St. near South Main St.. There are 112 units, including one-bedroom, two-bedroom, three-bedroom, and efficiency apartments. The design includes a centrally located space for social activities, a laundry room equipped with washing machines and dryers on each floor, a study room equipped with computers, and enclosed areas with locks for bike racks. A free shuttle bus operates between the Graduate apartments and all parts of the campus. A shuttle provides transportation to area stores for groceries and household items on Saturdays. You may ask about housing issues during the International Student Orientation.

http://offcampus.rice.edu/ - Rice’s online resource website for listings of garage apartments, rooms, and students desiring roommates.

Apartment Locators – your free personal resource to finding housing in Houston
AMANDA BOOS
Almost Home Properties
3300 Chimney Rock, Suite 104
Houston, TX 77056
713-789-3777
1-800-798-3778
Email: aboos@houston-apartments.com
- Highly recommended, has helped many students/scholars in the past.


KAREN REICHEK - REALTOR
Martha Turner/Sotheby's

Email: kreichek@marthaturner.com
Cell: 713-826-6527
- Free service, highly recommended, has helped many international students/scholars at Rice.


Additional Resources

http://www.ninoproperties.com
http://www.umovefree.com/City/houston-apartments-tx

http://www.houston-apartments.com
http://www.apartments.com
http://www.myapartmentmap.com

http://www.apartmentlist.com/houston
http://www.apartmentguide.com
http://www.finditapartments.net
http://www.apartment-locators.com
http://www.apartmentwiz.com
http://www.renthouston.com
http://www.apartmentgurus.com

http://www.trulia.com/for_rent/Houston,TX

http://www.zillow.com/houston-tx/apartments

 

Utilities
Visit www.moving.com/movers/moving-relocation-tools.asp to locate and compare rates for different service providers. You may contact the company directly to verify rates.

Electricity: For electric companies, visit www.powertochoose.org
Deposits range from $80-$400 and up, depending on size of apartment. Deposits can be waived if co-signer can be found who will be responsible for amount of deposit if you do not pay the final bill. You may also get the deposit waived if you can show a ‘letter of credit’ from your previous U.S. utility service with which you did business for at least one year. The letter of credit must show no more than 2 late payments. Most companies require at least 24 hours notice before it can turn on your electricity.

Gas: For gas, visit http://www.centerpointenergy.com or call Tel.: 1-800-752-8036. A deposit of $45 - $120 (could be more expensive) is paid to the service man, who turns on the gas.

Landline Telephones/Internet: AT&T– visit www.att.com. If telephone outlets are available in the house or apartment, the basic installment fee is ~$55.00. There are additional charges for special services. Applicants may be asked to give a U.S. Social Security number and a Texas ID or Driver’s License number. If you don't have a Social Security number, you may be able to provide your passport ID number.