January 8, 2024 | , ,

Everything you need to know about finding off-campus housing in Philly


Philadelphia is a vibrant and diverse city that attracts students from all around the world who seek a quality education and an unforgettable college experience. And while on-campus housing can be convenient (and ideal for your freshman year), many students prefer the freedom and independence that comes with living off-campus.

However, finding the perfect apartment in this bustling city can feel like a daunting task… but don’t worry!

That’s where Common and Campus Philly come in.

We’ve teamed up to help you with the entire process. Read on for some insights into what to consider during your apartment search, along with tips, tricks, and advice as you start the process!

Give yourself plenty of time 

A common mistake to avoid is leaving your housing search until the last minute. Students typically follow a similar schedule when looking for housing to align with the fall and spring semesters, and Philadelphia’s rental market can get competitive, especially during these peak seasons.

So get ahead of the rush and start your search as early as possible, ideally 2-3 months prior to your target move-in date. This will help avoid any last-minute scrambling (trust us, we know how stressful it can get!). 

Decide which neighborhood is right for you 

Philadelphia offers a diverse range of neighborhoods, each with its unique style and personality, just like the people who make it such a great place to live. Research each neighborhood’s proximity to your campus, public transport options, and access to amenities like bars, restaurants, and grocery stores to determine which area best suits your needs. Philly is a big city with a small town vibe—so spend some time exploring all around the city to discover your favorite spots.

BTW: For an inside look at the best aspects of every neighborhood (specifically curated for students and young professionals) there is no better place to start than Campus Philly’s Guide to Philly.  

Common Frankford offers all-inclusive coliving suites with
beautiful amenities like this community lounge 

Explore coliving as an option

If you are new to the city, and looking for something short-term and fully furnished, a great option to check out is coliving. 

So… what is coliving exactly—and what do you get included in your rent? With a Common coliving home, residents get their own fully furnished bedroom in a private, fully furnished shared suite.

Renters look to coliving for convenience, community, and the value of all-inclusive rent; and, if you opt to live with roommates, you will experience cost savings of up to 20% compared to a private studio apartment. 

Another bonus is that Common coliving homes offers short-term lease options starting at three months, which is perfect if you just want to dip your toes in and find out if coliving is right for you. 

Mily on Green located in Spring Garden offers private 2- and 3-bedroom apartments

Have the roommates sorted… but now need the apartment? 

Often finding the right people to live with is half the battle, so you are on the right track! 

If you have your dream roommates sorted already, the next step is to find a private apartment. Common not only offers shared coliving suites, but also private 2- and 3- bedroom apartments, which is perfect for a group of friends who want to live together. 

Plus, a unique benefit to living in a Common home is access to the Connect by Common app, which will allow you to…

  • RSVP to curated monthly events exclusive for Common members
  • Connect with your neighbors, so you can simultaneously explore the city with your existing friends, but also have the opportunity to make new ones
  • And so much more. It’s just another way Common is making city living in Philly easier and more fun.

Don’t know anyone to move in with? No problem! 

Perhaps you just landed in Philadelphia and haven’t had the opportunity to meet anyone yet, or maybe you are looking to expand your horizons and live with new people. Either way, Common has you covered and is here to take the hassle out of finding a roommate.

With Common, you can rent a fully furnished and private bedroom in a shared coliving suite. This means you will be sharing with up to two people depending on the apartment layout in their coliving homes. 

The Common community is inclusive, welcoming, and diverse, and while it might seem scary at first, we know you will love meeting your new suitemates and neighbors. Plus, Campus Philly always has your back with ways to explore your city with your new friends, so building your community will be a breeze, too.

Check out our latest blogs (including guides on Philly’s best parks and an insider’s look to all the best foodie spots in the city!) right here.

Make roommate living stress-free 

If you have ever lived with roommates before you probably have some well, interesting, stories that you can share. We know it’s not always easy living with other people, regardless if they are friends or strangers. That’s why Common has made it their mission to make living with roommates as stress-free as possible.  

All Common coliving homes come included with utilities, Wi-Fi, household essentials, appliances, kitchenware, and shared supplies. Not only do these included supplies save residents time and money, but they also might save their relationship with their roommates. Imagine: no more passive-aggressive Venmo requests for toilet paper or being left without a toaster when a roommate decides the West Coast is calling their name.

Time to start your search

Once you have a clear idea of whether you’re moving alone or with roommates, start searching for available rental options in your preferred neighborhoods. Seek out the help of a professional, or take advantage of the numerous online platforms at your fingertips, like Zillow, Trulia, Apartments.com, and Craigslist.

Filter your search based on your preferences, including the number of bedrooms, rent range, and lease duration. You can also use your school’s official off-campus housing site, Facebook marketplace and groups, or roommate finder platforms.

Pro tip: As you begin to visit different websites, remember to keep a list of places you’d like to check out virtually or in-person! 

And, of course, if you’re looking to simplify your search, take a look at Common’s coliving and traditional apartments in Philly. Coliving options offer fully-furnished, all-inclusive rooms in shared suites, with access to incredible amenities, free community events, and exclusive perks.

Finding the perfect off-campus housing in Philadelphia is an exciting and important step in your college journey. By starting early, conducting thorough research, and considering your living preferences, you can ensure your apartment search and next move is stress-free.

Common at Broadridge offers all-inclusive coliving suites, private studios, and 2- and 3-bedroom apartments in the heart of Fairmount.

Find your dream apartment!

Whether you will be moving alone or sharing an apartment with roommates, Common can help you find a private room in a shared coliving suite, a private studio apartment, or a 2- or 3-bedroom apartment you can share with your friends in neighborhoods like Fairmount, Fishtown, or Spring Garden.

Interested in exploring Common homes in Philadelphia? Click here to learn more and book a tour! >>


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