Gender-neutral housing

The University of Washington Bothell strives to make campus housing a welcoming and safe space for all students.  Gender-neutral housing supports LGBTQIA+, gender expression, transgender and ally students.  Choosing this option means that you will be matched with a student regardless of their gender designation. 

Two housing types:

Same gender housing 

Roommate assignments are based on the gender, for example, females living with females. In other words, all residents in an apartment identify as the same gender.

This option is available for all students.

Gender-neutral housing 

Roommate assignments are based on the roommate preferences you select without regard to a student’s sex, gender identity or gender expression. The apartment will be designated as gender-neutral and everyone in that apartment will have selected the gender-neutral housing option.  This option is on a space available basis and available to all students, who complete the online pledge that will be emailed.

What is gender-neutral housing?

Gender-neutral housing is when two or more students share a bedroom and/or apartment regardless of students’ sex, gender identity or gender expression. In other words, this option allows for same gender or different gender identities to live together regardless of biological sex. The option is available to all students who reside in student housing who have completed the online pledge.

Why is gender-neutral housing needed?

Residential Life wants every student who chooses to live in our residence halls to feel safe, comfortable, and part of an inclusive environment for all our students. Historically, residence halls were designed to separate the genders into two groups – male and female. Residential Life felt that there needs to be diverse living options as it relates to sex/gender fluid room assignments.

Based on the diverse needs and requests of our students, we expanded on-campus housing options in ways that address these needs. It is important to remember that all options continue to exist.  

Who might be interested in gender-neutral housing?

We strongly discourage students from living with someone with whom they are in a romantic relationship. Gender-neutral housing may be especially appealing to:

  • Students in the process of discovering their gender identity
  • Students who do not wish to identify themselves by gender
  • Members of the LGBTQIA+, gender and sexual diversity communities
  • Allies of LGBTQIA+, gender and sexual diversity communities

How do I sign-up for gender-neutral housing?

When you complete the housing application, make sure that you indicate your desire to be part of Gender-Neutral Housing. When you receive your housing offer, you will receive the Pledge to complete. The Pledge is to make sure you understand the purpose behind Gender Neutral Housing. 

If you do not complete the pledge, you will still receive an assignement in Student Housing but not in Gender Neutral Housing. 

What is included in the pledge?

We ask four questions as part of the pledge:

  • Do you commit to proactively creating a welcoming and inclusive environment in your apartment for students that may identify as a different gender than your own? (Yes or No)
  • Do you commit to be respectful to your roommate(s) regardless to their sexual orientation, sex, gender, and gender identity/expression? (Yes or No)
  • I understand that Gender Inclusive Housing is defined as a housing option in which students of any sex or gender identity can live together. The intent of this community is to give students the option to reside with another person of a different sex or gender identity to provide an inclusive, diverse environment that appreciates, respects, and supports academic and personal growth and success. (Yes or No)
  • In the past, some students have struggled to fully understand the purpose of Gender-Neutral Housing. It is critically important to our ability to facilitate inclusive communities, that students clearly understand the purpose of Gender-Neutral Housing.  Students who are unable to accurately articulate the purpose of Gender Neutral Housing will not be assigned to Gender-Neutral Housing. In your own words, please describe the purpose of Gender-Neutral Housing and what you believe you are committing to by submitting this agreement. (Write in)

How are roommate assignments made?

For those who select the Gender-Neutral Housing option, assignments are made without regard to the gender of the individuals.  Placement is gender neutral. The only information that will be used to assign roommates will be the information provided in the roommate preferences page on the housing application and any roommate requests that student made – provided both individuals selected Gender-Neutral Housing.

Will selecting gender-neutral housing limit the bedroom-type?

Gender-Neutral Housing will not limit your bedroom type or apartment options. Gender-Neutral Housing may be assigned anywhere within student housing.

Can students live with someone with whom they are in a romantic relationship?

This option is not intended for couples to live together.  We strongly discourage students from living with someone with whom they are in a romantic relationship.  Research has shown that most students who choose to live in Gender-Neutral housing do so with friends and not with those whom they are dating.

Can I still request a roommate?

Yes, you are still encouraged to request a roommate.  You will be placed with a mutual roommate request regardless of whether or not they also signed the pledge.  Please note that in order to have gender neutral housing assignment, both students will need to complete the pledge.

Can I choose not to live in gender-neutral housing?

Yes. Only those students who choose to live in Gender-Neutral Housing will be placed with in with other students wanting Gender-Neutral Housing. You will select Same Gender Housing in your housing application and you will be assigned to a space based on the biological sex that is listed in the university’s information database.

Signing up for Gender Neutral Housing, does not give you a greater chance to receive a housing assignment. 

I have specific needs & want to make staff aware.

If you have specific needs that you would like Residential Life staff to be aware of, please email Director Katie Horowitz at after submitting a housing application.