Using Third Parties to Find International Housing
Third parties, such as agencies, realtors, or websites, may be a helpful place to start your search. For housing purposes, we deem a “third party” to be defined as any organization, free or paid, that aids you in the search for international housing. There are often reliable third party options to find housing that are specific to a country or continent you may not be aware of. OCHSS recommends that you remain very cautious when using a third party resource. OCHSS can provide advice on whether or not we deem a third party resource to be reliable, or if students have found success in the past using that resource. To learn more about the different types of third parties, read more below.
Global agencies for co-ops are organizations specific to students searching for a global co-op. These agencies may be able to assist Northeastern students in areas of co-op placement, professional development support, recruitment assistance, orientation activities, program management, emergency support, visa services, cross-cultural activities, commuting costs in-country, and housing. While these agencies often require fees, this can be a good way to work with a more full-service entity. Currently, Northeastern University actively partners with several agencies that vary in the services they provide, with many providing housing. Contact Employer Engagement and Career Design to learn about the services they provide, including housing, co-op, or internship placement.
Study abroad providers are organizations that facilitate or administer study abroad programs for students, and oftentimes help you manage the complexities of the many logistics that accompany studying abroad, such as housing. Contact GEO to learn more about the study abroad providers that Northeastern partners with.
Homestay agencies are agencies and organizations that can match you with a host family abroad. Ensure you do thorough research on the agency: read its reviews, know what resources the agency provides (such as transportation from the airport, prior contact with the family, etc.), and consult with other students who may be familiar with the agency.
Realtors or real estate agents are people or companies that aid you in finding and securing a rented accommodation. Similar to those in the United States, there may be a fee associated with their service. It is recommended that if you choose to use a realtor to assist you in finding a rented apartment that you do so using extreme caution. Of course, we do not recommend sending sensitive and/or personal information to realtors that you have not met in person or are unfamiliar with.
Websites, such as the resources listed under the in-country resources, are fairly intuitive. There are several websites that are country or continent-specific, and we recommend contacting OCHSS directly to learn more about legitimate websites to use when searching for housing. We also can indicate if students have found success with certain websites in the past.
Social Media, such as Facebook, can be a helpful way to find accommodations, but remaining extremely cautious is certainly recommended. We cannot stress it enough: we do not recommend sending sensitive and/or personal information to individuals that you have not met in person or are unfamiliar with. Additionally, remain cautious when looking at photos on social media of accommodations that you have not seen in person before. Safe and useful examples of Facebook usage to find accommodations could be (i) your university exchange coordinator has a Facebook group that includes all of the individuals in the program, or (ii) your employer inviting you to join a Facebook group that includes all interns or co-ops at the company. Additionally, Facebook groups run by trusted administrators that you recognize, such as the university you may be studying at, can be a great way to meet potential roommates or find accommodations.
Universities, while they may not always have on-campus housing, they may have an off-campus housing website (similar to the Northeastern OCHSS website), where the university may provide recommendations, trusted realtors, or trusted landlords in the area. Googling the name of the university (where you’re studying or the closest university to your workplace) paired with the phrase “off campus housing” could present several accommodation options as well.
Disclaimer: Off Campus Housing and Support Services provides information to Northeastern University students, faculty and staff members solely as a courtesy. Northeastern does not endorse any of the housing options listed. Northeastern University accepts no responsibility for the accuracy or reliability of housing listings with the office. Contact with persons listed herein must be conducted independently and at your own risk. The university does not screen, recommend, vouch for, or take responsibility for the condition or safety of housing arrangements made by students.