We abandoned collecting true housing deposits approximately 20 years ago. We shifted to a $200 pre-payment that is due at the time the housing contract is submitted. The pre-payment is applied to the fall semester housing charges. From a contract management perspective, the $200 pre-payment represents a good faith interest in the student's intent to reside on campus and is also motivation for the student to take action on a timely basis if they need to cancel due to withdrawing from the University or for a number of other reasons. There are deadlines and cancellation fees assessed based on when notice is provided and the pre-payment often serves to offset those charges. We do not have mandatory residency for any of our students. Overall, I believe the pre-payment helps us better project our occupancy. There is some debate as to whether $200 is a sufficient amount or if it should be increased.
Ronald Portwine, MBA, CASP
Associate Vice President for Administration & Business Affairs
Saginaw Valley State University
South Campus Complex A 146| 7400 Bay Road
University Center, MI 48710