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Housing and Food

An aerial view of downtown Blacksburg

There are many options for housing in Blacksburg. Although students are expected to find their own housing accommodations, the LCI will help them locate housing, furniture, and necessities for housekeeping after they arrive at the Institute.

On-campus housing in Blacksburg

Housing on the main Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg is subject to availability. Accommodation prices vary by building and type of room. 

Residence hall rooms contain basic furniture such as beds, desks, dressers, and cabinets. Students who live in the residence halls must provide their own sheets, towels, and blankets. Students should wait until they arrive to purchase these items because the beds are an unusual "long twin" size. Most rooms have a sink. Some buildings have bathrooms shared by multiple residents, others have private bathrooms shared by roommates. All residence halls contain limited cooking facilities.

Students who live in residence halls on campus are required to purchase one of three dining plans. Menus are diverse and offer a range of options, including halal and vegan/vegetarian offerings. For more information check out the Dining Services interactive menu at

Students may apply online for on-campus housing.


Homestay, or accommodation with an American host, is available in Blacksburg. Homestay placement may be arranged in advance to be available upon arrival. A host may be a "traditional" American family with a mother, father, and children or it may be a couple without children. The host may also be single, with or without children.

Homestay accommodation consists of a private furnished room (single occupancy) in a home. Furnishing, at a minimum, includes a bed, desk, and closet. Sheets, a blanket, a pillow, and towels are supplied, and students will have access to laundry facilities. Most homestay homes will be within easy access of public transportation and will be within a reasonable commuting distance of the LCI.

"Rules of the family" apply to homestay guests. Smoking, for example, may be prohibited in some homes. If students are smokers, they could, of course, smoke outside the home.

Americans commonly keep cats and dogs as pets. These animals often live in the house. Students should indicate to their homestay coordinator if they do not wish to be in a home with a pet.

For information on homestay accommodation near the Blacksburg campus, please see:


Most Virginia Tech students live off campus. Students who bring their families are required to live off campus. An apartment — usually with one or more bedrooms, a living room, a kitchen, and a bathroom — is normally rented by a family or shared by two or more students. Many apartments are within walking distance of the LCI or are on the town bus routes.

Apartments usually include cooking facilities. Bathrooms are usually shared among apartment-mates. Rent may or may not include utilities such as water and sewer or trash collection. Gas and/or electric services may also be a separate expense; these costs can be significant during winter months because of heating. Students are advised to ask landlords about these extra costs before signing a contract to rent.

Almost all apartments come unfurnished. Furnishings are generally available from secondhand stores, private "yard sales," rental companies, or local stores.

People who want to rent an apartment must sign a lease, or housing contract, usually for 12 months. Shorter lease terms are difficult to find in August but may be available in January and May. Once it is signed, a lease cannot be broken or changed. When a lease is signed, a security deposit for potential damages is usually required. This can range from half a month's rent to a full month's rent. Students should plan for this deposit when making their budgets if they want to live in an apartment.

Following are some links to assist in finding apartments in the Blacksburg area:

Finding familiar foods

Students may purchase a meal plan from Virginia Tech, eat at a restaurant, or cook for themselves. The following stores offer national foods for sale:

903 University City Blvd.

Oasis World Foods*
1411 S. Main St.

Food Lion*
801 Hethwood Blvd.

708 N Main St. # A

Annie Kay's Whole Foods
1531 S. Main St.

*Kosher and/or halal selections available


The inclusion of any service, property, or rental unit on this website does not constitute, and shall not be construed or reported as (1) an endorsement or approval by Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) of the landlord, its properties, or its business practices, or (2) a warranty or representation by Virginia Tech or LCI as to the quality, safety, or other features of such property and/or its owners or management agent(s). Virginia Tech and the LCI expressly disclaim any and all responsibility for any problems that may arise with regard to such property or rental units or with regard to disputes between landlords and tenants concerning such property or rental units. All prospective tenants are encouraged to exercise their own good judgment when evaluating a prospective rental unit or landlord.