Tips for Tenants

To Rent on Campus or Off Campus

Some random thoughts: Many students want to rent close to campus for obvious reasons: walk to class, able to go home easily when you have a break from class, lots of restaurants, that’s where your friends are, etc. Sometimes non students like to live close to campus too so that they can be close to […]

Advantages of Renting

One of the best things about renting is that when something needs attention in your rental–a dripping faucet, trouble with the furnace, a stopped up drain–you just need to know one phone number, your landlord’s.  You don’t have to wonder who to call–are they good at their trade?  Will they show up?  How much will […]

Typical Lease Terms in Champaign-Urbana

Champaign Urbana is influenced by the academic calendar of the University of Illinois.  Often people who are not students are surprised to learn that most of our leases run from August of one year to August of the next year because of the University schedule.  Some apartments are available in January for second semester. Another […]

Checking up on Your Landlord

Wouldn’t it be great if there were a way to find out about your landlord?  As in –does he/she get repairs done quickly; does he return security deposits, things like that.  Well, in Champaign-Urbana there is a way–the Tenant Union.  They keep track of complaints against landlords.  They also give advice about renting. Just keep […]

Freedom Sweet Freedom

Do you think you are freer when you rent a home or when you own a home? Well, when you own your home you can have pets, you can decorate any way you please, you can  change things.  So it would seem like you have more freedom. There’s one big problem; what about when you […]


Ahhh–roommates.  Now that’s a big subject.  I won’t try to get too deep here but will just make a few observations. It is fun to live with your friends, and it can be a great idea to share expenses, but here are some things that I have heard from students. Sometimes it’s hard to get […]

The Bottom Line

When you are considering your price range for a rental, there are several items to think about in addition to the rent. What utilities are included?  Utilities have gone up a lot in the past few years, so they will be a big item.  Is garbage hauling extra? How about parking?  Cable,  internet? Is the […]

Campus living–Champaign or Urbana

There are differences between the two towns even though they are divided physically only by Wright Street.  I’m not an expert on this and so have only my opinions to offer, but here’s what I’ve observed. The Champaign side of campus is more lively; there are more apartment buildings, more bars and more parties. Consequently […]

Personal preferences

Before you start your search, think about what size apartment or house you need. And where would you like to live? If you are a U of I student, do you want to live close to campus? Do you prefer Champaign or Urbana? (More about that later.) What is your style preference–old or new? What […]

Looking for a rental in C-U

There are several resources that can help you find a place in our fine city. We have two newspapers: the News Gazette and the Daily Illini (University of Illinois student paper). They both have print and online editions with ads for apartments and houses. My favorite place to advertise is Craigslist because the ads are […]


Welcome to my new blog! We are going to be posting tips that we hope will help you in your search for apartments and houses in Champaign and Urbana. We will also be writing about rentals in general in the desire to make living here a happy experience for you.