Brandeis International Business School

Your housing guide: Finding an apartment in the Waltham area

Searching for the right place to live can be hard. Here are some helpful tips

House searching on laptop

My housing search started on Facebook through a housing group dedicated to Brandeis students. I would definitely recommend beginning your apartment search around three months or so before your program starts. My other top recommendation is to identify your roommates (or flatmates, for our non-U.S. readers) as early as possible. The moral of the story: be sure to get an early start to save time and money to ensure you find a great place (with great roommates). 

Everyone has different needs and expectations when it comes to housing. Below I’ve listed several important factors that I used during my apartment search. Feel free to focus on whatever is most important to you.

Cat playing with dishwasher


Dishwasher: Not all houses have a dishwasher. If you plan on living with several people, I highly recommend getting a house that has one. This keeps the dishes out of the sink and makes cleaning easier and faster. Also, when you have people over you don’t have to worry about doing the dishes!

Rent (with or without utilities?): Make sure you understand whether the rent includes utilities like heat, hot water and electricity. Utilities can range from $60-$100 per person each month, depending on the weather (New England winters are cold). This can be a significant additional expense that you will want to plan for if it is not included in your rent.

Distance from shuttle stop: Several campus shuttles and van routes are available for students that run across Waltham and the campus of Brandeis University. These are very helpful for students who don’t have cars. The Brandeis “BranVan” has several stops on its loop through the city. I recommend looking for housing that is close to one of these stops. It will be very convenient, especially during the winter.

Distance from the business school: Similarly, you also need to be aware of the distance between your house and the International Business School (not just Brandeis). While I was looking for houses, I felt 1-1.5 miles could be an easy walk to campus. But during winter, that walk became more difficult because of the snow and cold. 

Grocery stores: Having a house close to the grocery store is ideal! You can look up grocery stores on any map app and see which are closest to your address. Patel Brothers, India Market, Hannaford Supermarket and Market Basket are some of the more popular grocery stores in Waltham.

The best way to improve your housing search is to join the Facebook housing groups for Brandeis students. Here students and landlords post room/apartment openings, subleases and even furniture for sale. 

I will end by reminding you one more time to start your search early. For more information and helpful contacts, be sure to visit the Graduate Student Affairs office’s Finding an Apartment page. I hope these tips help you with your search. Happy house hunting!

Student Insights features blog posts and videos produced by current students and recent graduates of Brandeis International Business School. The views, thoughts and opinions expressed here belong solely to the author.

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