Eligible Harvard-affiliated roommates who sign a lease together are referred to as “co-lessees.” Occupants who do not sign the lease, such as family members, are referred to as “non-lessee occupants” or Authorized Occupants.

Characteristics to Consider

Having roommates can be a great way to save money by splitting your rent. However, before deciding to live with someone, there are many factors to consider, such as:

  • Cleanliness compatibility
  • Work/school schedule compatibility
  • Common interests
  • Joint and several liability

Keep in mind that HUH does not mediate disputes between co-lessees, so it’s important to protect yourself by choosing people you can trust to follow HUH policies and meet the payment requirements listed in your lease.

Considering living with a roommate? Please view this two-minute HUH informational video.

Learn how to add a roommate during the application process.

Two male roommates sitting in a living room and laughing as they look at a laptop.

Roommate Eligibility

All co-lessees must meet Harvard affiliate eligibility requirements.

Occupants of any kind, both co-lessees and non-lessee occupants, are not allowed at HUH's single-occupancy properties, Cronkhite Graduate Center and 4-6 Mount Auburn Street, when those properties are available to lease.

Two women roommates smiling in their new apartment as one holds a box of apartment decorations.

Paying Rent with Roommates

After you add a co-lessee, everyone will split the rent evenly. Split billing can take up to two months to go into effect and will be reflected on your student bill or paycheck.

Even though co-lessees are billed even portions of the rent, all co-lessees are joint and severally liable for the entire rent amount. This means:

  • HUH holds all co-lessees responsible for the rent being paid in full each month.
  • The full rent balance is due each month, even if one or more lessees did not contribute their payments.
  • If all charges are not paid, all co-lessees may be subject to legal action, including eviction. 
  • Please understand, there is no paying “just your part,” regardless of how roommates divide the charges and expenses among themselves. If one tenant moves out early, does not pay their share of the rent, or causes damage to the unit, then each of the other co-tenants, individually as well as collectively, must pay that person’s share and the cost of repairs. If you pay HUH for charges due because of your co-tenant’s actions, it is solely up to you to collect from the non-paying co-tenant.

Questions about roommates and leases? Find more information in the Tenant policy manual (PDF). If you still have questions, contact us:

three roommates moving in together, walking up stairs and carrying belongings

Finding, Adding, and Removing Roommates

HUH recommends the following resources to find a Harvard-affiliated co-lessee:

  1. Visit Harvard Off-Campus Housing
  2. Visit your Harvard graduate school's Facebook page

Keep in mind that HUH does not match roommates. 

Important Privacy Information 

Personal information (login ID and password) does not need to be shared with a potential roommate to add a roommate to a lease. To protect your security, this information should never be shared with anyone.

HUH accepts co-lessee addition requests between April 1 and November 15 from lessees whose lease ends the following June. It can take up to ten business days to complete the roommate addition process. To add a co-lessee:

  • Email, and copy all co-lessees, including the new co-lessee(s).
  • In the email, include:
    • Your name
    • Your apartment property and unit number with HUH
  • In the email, also include the new co-lessee(s)’s:
    • Name
    • Email address
    • Lease start date
  • New leases will be prepared for signature and must be signed by all roommates, including the current leaseholder(s), and returned to the Leasing Office to initiate billing processes access. The roommate addition lease cannot be backdated.

If you've chosen to terminate your lease, or you are ending your Harvard affiliation through graduation or end of appointment, you cannot add a co-lessee. 

To remove a co-lessee from the lease:

  • Email, and copy all co-lessees
  • In the email, include:
    • Your name
    • Your apartment property and unit number with HUH
    • Name and email of the co-lessee being removed
    • Date being removed from the lease

A leasing coordinator will then send a Lease Adjustment form. Please note that a co-lessee can only be removed from the lease if all co-lessees release them from the responsibilities of the lease.