A new program at The Ohio State University is connecting students to a network of property owners committed to a set of standards for cleaner, safer housing.
The university is committed to helping students make informed decisions through the Ohio State Off-Campus Housing Network.
“So this network gives them an opportunity to make sure that they can see a list of landlords that meet at least a standard,” said TJ Logan, associate vice president for the residential experience.
The network is a collaboration between Ohio State, the Office of Student Life, Student Legal Services, property owners and several City of Columbus departments, including police, fire, public safety and code enforcement.
The network establishes certain criteria for off-campus property owners. Those property owners that commit to meeting these criteria will be considered in-network.
Some of these criteria include:
- Properties must meet City of Columbus housing code
- Provide and maintain exterior lighting at the rear and front of all properties
- Provide carbon monoxide detectors
- Meet individually with Off-Campus and Commuter Student Engagement at least twice annually
In-network property owners receive exclusive benefits such as being included in the university’s offcampus.osu.edu housing search, invitations to in-network meeting and events and access to information, as well as various marketing opportunities.
For sophomore theater major Christopher Wright, the network helps bring balance to the relationship between a renter and the property owner.
Wright said he has already seen the benefits of a reliable property owner.
“When I first moved into my apartment, I actually did notice that there was an issue with my garbage disposal,” he said. “I was able to get in touch with my leasing agent, she came right over, came over with her team, and they fixed it right away.”
In-network properties are not endorsed or guaranteed by Ohio State or its network collaborators. The program helps students and families access information about in-network property owners to help make informed decisions about off-campus living options.
“If you’re a student, you can go to our website. You’re going to go to offcampus.osu.edu. That’s where you’re going to find all the different resources, including a link to the off-campus housing network,” Logan said. “And you can go there and you can see properties that have agreed to meet these standards.”