For the art student, Boston offers a stimulating environment in which to work and study. It is a leading center of educational and artistic resources. Finding a place to live in a major metropolitan area such as Boston can seem overwhelming, especially with the multitude of neighborhoods and wide differences in rental units. No matter where you look, the search for housing in Boston can be intense, with thousands of students, young professionals, and families seeking a limited number of rentals. Don't wait for people to call you, or hope they will call you back. Be aggressive, without being rude.
- Off-Campus Housing 101
Boston Zoning (No more than 4!)
Five or more students sharing an apartment, single family house or any other dwelling unit, is a violation of the zoning code.
- Apartment Hunting 101
- Guide to Renting in Boston
Does the property I'm looking at have issues? RentSmart compiles data from ISD and 311 to give renters access to property violations, maintenance requests that provide prospective renters and homeowners with data about Boston’s properties. RentSmart Boston compiles data from BOS:311 and the City’s Inspectional Services Division to give prospective tenants a more complete picture of the apartments they are considering renting. The tool prompts users for an address and generates a report to assist prospective tenants in understanding any previous issues with the property, including:
- Housing violations
- Building violations
- Enforcement violations
- Housing complaints
- Sanitation requests and/or
- Civic maintenance requests
- Before You Move In
- Attorney General's Office Landlord-Tenant Rights & Responsibilities Webinar -
- Fair Housing
- CRD Lead Paint
- Housing Discrimination Testing Program
Know Your Rights
Property owners and tenants, including students who rent in Boston, have to follow certain rental rules in the City. According to the City of Boston's Know Your Rights When You Rent website, you may not be charged an application fee by a property owner or their brokers.
- A Massachusetts Consumer Guide to Tenant Rights & Responsibilities
- Mass Legal Help
All homes must meet the State Sanitary Code. Learn more about the regulations.
Massachusetts Accessible Housing Registry
Mass Access is a free program that matches people with disabilities with vacant, accessible housing.
A compilation of laws, regulations, cases and web sources on the law of service animals.
Academic Resource Center at MassArt
Can be used as a resource when navigating off-campus housing accommodations. For more information about ADA policy, you can visit the official Americans with Disabilities Act website.
Need to report a non-emergency? Use BOS:311! Dial 3-1-1 or download the BOS:311 app!
MA Commission Against Discrimination
Department of Public Health Services
Better Business Bureau
Greater Boston Real Estate Board
- City of Boston Information
- City of Boston Public Works & Utilities
- City of Boston Fire Department
- Boston Police Department
- Boston Parks and Recreation
The Boston Police Department would like to offer some safety tips to ensure that packages end up in the right hands throughout the year.