Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Friday, May 20, 2011

U-M room and board rates approved for 2011-12

The Board of Regents on May 19 approved rates for residence hall room and board, and University Housing apartment rentals for the 2011-12 academic year.

Room and board for students residing in U-M residence hall communities next academic year reflect a 1 percent increase to partially offset projected costs to operate and maintain the facilities, services and programs necessary for living and dining on campus. Planned efficiencies in University Housing operations will offset other projected costs.

Residents also will pay an amount equal to 2 percent of the previous year's rate to fund major renovations of campus housing facilities. The basic cost per student for a double room with a standard meal plan, then, will total $9,468, an increase of approximately $138 per term from the 2010-11 academic year.

Rental rates in Northwood Community Apartments for upper-level undergraduates, graduate students and students with families will increase by an average of 1 percent. The monthly rate for a graduate or family unfurnished unit will range from $511 per person for a shared two-bedroom unit to $1,241 (total) for an air-conditioned, three-bedroom town house, an increase of $10-$12 per month depending on the unit.

The rate increases reflect adjustments for projected expenses, after planned reductions in University Housing operating costs. Offsetting a forecast increase of $2.6 million in employee costs, food supplies and expanded dining services, University Housing is reducing other operating expenses by an estimated $1.7 million for fiscal year 2012. Efficiencies include reduction of staff positions through attrition, limits in overtime expenses and reducing purchases of equipment, supplies, computers and office furnishings.

University Housing is a self-funded auxiliary unit of the university. Since fiscal year 2006, University Housing has achieved $9.6 million in cost reductions that have helped minimize increases in room and board rates over the years.

"The goal is to keep room and board rates as low as possible while maintaining a quality experience for resident students," said Linda Newman, director of University Housing. "Achieving that goal from year to year compels us to manage operating costs efficiently and to invest strategically in the delivery of core programs and facility improvements that support the academic, social and personal needs of our students."

For the past several years, residential students have contributed an amount equal to 2 percent of the residence hall room and board rate to fund major projects that are part of the Residential Life Initiatives, a planned capital program launched in 2003 to improve university housing and dining facilities. RLI commitments have included the construction of Hill Dining Center and North Quadrangle Residential and Academic Complex, upgraded fire alarm and suppression systems throughout all the residence halls, and comprehensive renovations of Mosher-Jordan, Stockwell, Couzens and Alice Lloyd halls. (Couzens will reopen this fall term, and Lloyd closed at the beginning of this month until August 2012, when it will reopen to students.)

Room and board rate recommendations are developed in collaboration with key university business offices, the student Residence Halls Association and the Northwood Community Apartments Rate Review Committee. The Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs ultimately proposes the recommended rate schedule to the Board of Regents, which has the final authority in setting major university fees, including room and board.