Lottery info

Eliot House Housing Lottery Dates, Rules And Procedures 2017

March 21

Tuesday, Noon       

Q & A with Sue and Logan

March 24

Friday, 4:00 pm

Deadline to email Rules Exception Requests to Housing Committee
Medical Exception Documentation due in Eliot House Office

March 28

Tuesday, 8:00am- 2:00pm

Turn in all Rooming Group Data Forms and Draw Lottery # in Dining Hall

March 31

Friday, 12:00 pm

Group Merging or Splitting requests due (email to Housing Committee)

April 5

Wednesday, 8:00 pm

Lottery Day #1, Dining Hall

April 6

Thursday, 2:00

Lottery Day #2,Eliot House Office

Lottery Day 1 – Wednesday, April 5th 8pm -- Eliot Dining Hall

  • Senior Groups of 11 or more [n+1 rooms for n people]: by lottery number.
  • Senior Crowds [n rooms for n people]: by lottery number.
  • Senior Groups of 4 – 10 people [n+1 rooms for n people] in descending order by size (10's, 9's, etc..), then by lottery number.
  • Junior and Mixed Crowds [n-1 rooms for n people] by lottery number.  Mixed crowds with 4 or more seniors get n rooms.
  • Junior and Mixed Groups [n rooms for n people]: by lottery number.  Mixed groups with 4 or more seniors get n+1 rooms.

Lottery Day 2 – Thursday, April 6  2pm – Eliot House Office

  • Any new crowds, by lottery number
  • Senior groups of 4 or fewer people by lottery number. Ideally: 6 rooms for 4 people, 4 rooms for 3 people, 3 rooms for 2 people.
            However, we cannot guarantee (n+1) housing for seniors picking on Day 2.  We encourage you to try to pick on Day 1.

General Rules


  • General Eligibility to Enter the Lottery: Leaves of Absence and Other Special Situations

Students who will not be in residence in the fall, but will return in the spring:  You may not enter the lottery.  We will work with you to find appropriate housing in the spring semester.  We will have plenty of space available in the spring.  If you choose to enter the lottery and later decide to go away in the fall, the remaining members of your rooming group may be split apart and re-housed in other rooms, or they may have to take a "floater."  Please be upfront with your future roommates about your leave plans.

Students who will be in residence in the fall, but will be absent in the spring:  (This includes March degree candidates)  You must indicate this on your housing form.  In all such cases, the rooming group will typically be required to take on a "floater" for the spring semester.  Please be upfront with your future roommates about your leave plans.

Definition and Status of Rooming Groups

A rooming group consists of two or more people who wish to choose their room(s) at the same time in the lottery.  Single students may not enter the lottery (please see the suggestions below for single students).  A rooming group will choose the appropriate total number of rooms based on their lottery status, regardless of whether the rooms are adjacent or not.  Senior groups who pick on the first day will get a total of only n+1 rooms, regardless of how they divide their group (that is, if a group of 8 wants to have a 5-person group in L and a 3-person group in B, one of the sub-groups will only have n rooms).  At the time of room selection, students must inform the housing committee which students will be living in which suite.  All room selections are final.

Men and women will be allowed in the same group only if they read and sign a Gender Neutral Housing Agreement.  Please see Sue in the House Office for more information.    Mixed-gender groups will receive no special status in the lottery.

A rooming group will have senior status in the lottery only if ALL the members of the group have legitimately chosen "senior status" in the lottery.  Any groups with both juniors and seniors will be considered "mixed."  Juniors who wish to live with seniors may also petition the Housing Committee to take "senior status" during their junior year.  Juniors can take senior status only once; as seniors, they will have junior status. Students are housed according to their social class regardless of advanced academic standing.

Current juniors who last year elected to take senior status will be classified this year as juniors.  IF YOU ARE NOT SURE WHERE YOU STAND CONTACT THE HOUSING COMMITTEE BY THE SPECIAL PETITION DATE, March 24


Splitting and Merging

Groups may split or merge at any time before noon on Friday, March 31.  Groups wishing to split or merge must send an email to the housing committee with all of the essential information (names of everyone in the group, current lottery numbers, new groups).  Merged groups will be assigned a lottery number that is the unweighted average of the constituent groups.  If that averaged number is the same as another group who drew that number in the lottery, the group who drew the actual number will pick first.  Split groups will retain their original lottery numbers; representatives from the subgroups will flip a coin to determine who will pick first.

"Note that during splitting and merging, every student retains his or her original lottery number. Any students who split apart may not merge back together to form a new group."

Junior groups of any size or Senior groups of 4 or less may split apart at any time up to and including the night of the lottery. Each subgroup will then choose at the appropriate time for its class status and lottery number.

Groups of 5 or more seniors have a privileged position in the lottery.  On the night of the lottery, they may split apart only if they cannot find suitable rooms adjacent or near to one another.  If they must split apart, each new subgroup will pick later in the lottery at the appropriate time.  For instance, if a group of 7 seniors splits into subgroups of 5 and 2, the 5-person group will pick with the other senior 5's later on Day 1 of the lottery, and the 2-person group will pick according to lottery number on Day 2. 

Available Suites and "Bumping" of Sophomore Suites

The available suites will be posted on a list along with the maps in the breezeway.  The list will also give the total number of rooms in each suite.  For instance, a suite consisting of a common room and two bedrooms will be considered an "n=3" room.  No changes will be made to the available rooms after noon, March 31; any requests to make sophomore rooms available in the lottery must be emailed to the committee by that date. 

Special ExceptionsALL requests for special exceptions must be sent by email before 4pm on Friday, March 24.

Medical: Students who for medical reasons need special housing must contact the Student Disability Resource Center (phone: 496-8707; email: sdrc@fas) and provide written documentation by 4 pm on March 24 to the House Office.

Religious: Please notify the committee by the special petition date (4pm on March 24) that you will be looking for a room that structurally accommodates your religious practices. Also, provide us with the names of the people in your rooming/blocking group. There are usually several entryways that have the architecture to accommodate these situations. No special lottery is conducted for this purpose. However, if you see during the lottery that it is getting to the point where there is only one appropriate suite left, please approach the lottery table and we will give you that room at that point. It is your responsibility to monitor the rooms available, although we will try to help you as well. Based on past lotteries, students in this situation have been able to get an appropriate room through the main lottery.

Squatting: Any student may petition to squat in his or her current suite if he or she arranges a crowded rooming group for that suite for the subsequent year. Such groups will not enter the lottery. All other current members of the group must agree to the "squatting" of the new group. Please email your request to the housing committee by March 24, 4 pm. Include names of your current roommates that agree to your request and the names of the people who have agreed to live crowded with you in that room next year.


Anybody may choose to enter the housing process as a "floater". However, you should contact Sue Weltman in the House office as soon as possible even if you are just thinking about leaving your current group as a floater. There are no suites for singles in Eliot, so it is in your best interest to form a group with other floaters or join a group seeking to increase their size. Sue manages this process and can assist you in finding the right group. This is the exception to Rule #1-- you do not need to inform everyone on the committee about your situation. Students are often happier getting out of their current rooming group and pairing up with another student with whom they can live with well, even if they were not friends before the room selection process. There are quite a few Junior doubles in this year’s lottery who will be looking to find a third person to make a junior triple.

Floaters who do not form or join a group by the number drawing on Tuesday, March 28 do not pick a lottery number, but are required to turn in a Room Drawing Form.  Floaters who do not form or join a group by the lottery date will be housed during the summer where space is available.  In such cases we cannot guarantee that the floater will be housed with students of the same class.

Groups seeking to increase their size and other singles can view the singles list and can ask singles to merge with them to form a new and/or larger group.

  • Newly formed/merged groups must email the appropriate information to the housing committee by noon Friday March 31.
  • After March 31 groups may pick up floaters, but the group will keep their original room selection order.  (For example, if 7 seniors pick up a floater the day of the lottery, they may pick 9 rooms but would still pick with the original Senior 7's.)

Questions? Comments?

Please submit all questions by email to the housing committee, as listed in Rule #1. Please note that submitting a question does not suspend the effect of any rules. Thus, it is important to submit questions as soon as possible so that they may be answered prior to important deadlines.




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