Apartment Resident Handbook

Family & Graduate Housing is pleased you have chosen to live with us. We hope you enjoy your new home and find our community to be a friendly and exciting place to live. Our services and programs are designed to help you make the most of your time with us.

This handbook will acquaint you with the many programs and services available in Family & Graduate Housing and the surrounding community. Participating in our events and activities is a great way to meet your neighbors and expand your experiences. Our policies and procedures are also included. This book does not replace the terms and conditions of your lease, which you can refer to for additional lease questions.

Handbook Contents

    Nondiscrimination Policy

    The commitment of the University of Illinois to the most fundamental principles of academic freedom, equality of opportunity and human dignity requires that decisions involving students and employees be based on individual merit and be free from invidious discrimination in all its forms. It is the policy of the university not to engage in discrimination or harassment against any person because of race, color, religion, sex, pregnancy, disability, national origin, citizenship status, ancestry, age, order of protection status, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation including gender identity, arrest record status, unfavorable discharge from the military or status as a protected veteran and to comply with all federal and state nondiscrimination, equal opportunity and affirmative action laws, orders and regulations. This nondiscrimination policy applies to admissions, employment, and access to and treatment in the university’s programs and activities. Complaints of invidious discrimination prohibited by university policy are to be resolved within existing university procedures. For additional information on the equal opportunity, affirmative action and harassment policies of the university, contact the Office of Diversity, Equity and Access (ODEA). For additional information on Title IX, ADA or 504, contact the Title IX Coordinator at the Title IX and Disability Office.

    - Illinois Student Code, 1-108(a)-(d)

    Sexual Misconduct Policy

    The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is committed to providing a safe and welcoming campus environment free from discrimination based on sex, which includes sexual assault, sexual exploitation, stalking, sexual harassment, dating violence and domestic violence (collectively referred to as sexual misconduct). The university prohibits and will not tolerate sexual misconduct because such behavior violates the university’s institutional values, adversely impacts the university’s community interest, and interferes with the university’s mission. The university also prohibits retaliation against any person who, in good faith, reports or discloses a violation of this policy, files a complaint and/or otherwise participates in an investigation, proceeding, complaint or hearing under this policy.

    Once the university becomes aware of an incident of sexual misconduct, the university will promptly and effectively respond in a manner designed to eliminate the misconduct, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects. 

    -Illinois Student Code, 1-111(a)

    Apartment Policies

    Apartment Life and Noise

    Apartment living is different than living in your own home. You may have to adjust to a smaller living space. Getting to know your neighbors as friends will make it easier for you to adjust to your new apartment and neighborhood. If a problem occurs, it will be much easier for you to talk to your neighbor about it if you know them.

    Family & Graduate Housing is home to people from more than 70 different countries. Residents bring their own unique heritages, ideas, and ways of doing things. Some families may be very quiet in their apartment because they view their homes as places of tranquility. In other families, home may be the only place where people feel comfortable being lively or singing. Because different families are comfortable with different levels of noise, sometimes conflicts may occur between neighbors.

    We offer the following guidelines to encourage friendly relations:

    Be considerate.
    Some apartments carry noise more easily than others and certain noises can be heard by neighbors. Excessive running and jumping, moving furniture, music, and televisions are examples of everyday noises that may bother neighbors. These noises are especially annoying when they become excessive, are very loud, and occur late at night when people are sleeping. In general, we ask all apartment residents to make an effort to keep noise at a minimum after 10:00 p.m. every night.

    Please remember that this is a living area, not a library.

    Some noise from everyday activities can be expected. We all need quiet space to study, and there are numerous libraries on campus for that purpose.

    Talk with your neighbor if you have a concern.
    If you are irritated by the noise your neighbor is making, bring it to their attention in a calm and friendly manner. Expressing anger and making noise in retaliation can only make matters worse. If you need some assistance in resolving a noise problem, please contact your Community Aide or the Family & Graduate Housing office. If your Community Aide contacts you about a noise problem, please work with them to resolve the concern. Their primary interest is to resolve any conflicts between neighbors and make our community a pleasant place for everyone to live.


    Bicycles must have a property tag from Family & Graduate Housing. Residents receive property stickers at move-in or lease renewal. There is no fee for bikes in the apartments, and residents are responsible for placing these stickers on their bicycle. The following rules will apply:

    • If you sell, leave your bicycle, or give it to someone else, you must cancel your registration permit at the Family & Graduate Housing office.
    • Any bicycles not properly registered will be picked up and disposed of according to University policies.
    • Bicycles must be in operating condition to be registered. Any bikes that are missing wheels, seats, chains, etc., will be removed and disposed of according to University policies.
    • Bicycle repair stations are located at each laundry facility within Orchard Downs.
    • Bicycles need to be locked and stored in the bike racks provided in the front of each building. Please do not leave bikes near the buildings or attached to gas meters, stair railings, or in the building stairways.
    • Goodwin-Green has indoor bike storage facilities located in the basement of the 300 and 1107 buildings.

    Please note that bicycles parked near building doors make it much more difficult for personnel to enter a building during emergencies. Bicycles not in the designated bike racks will be disposed of according to University policies.

    Bicycles that will be on campus must be registered with the University of Illinois. Your apartment property sticker is not registration with the campus bike program. Bike at Illinois has more information and details about the registration process.


    While it is important to decorate apartments to make them feel like home, there are certain limitations you must observe. Do not use adhesive type hangers or attach anything to doors. Do not fasten bookshelves to walls or attach lamps or planters to the ceiling. Any type of carpet installation must be removed prior to moving out. Nails, tacks, and adhesives may damage floors and result in damage charges. Please review the “Conditions of Premises” on the Lease Terms and Conditions for further information.


    Possession or storage of weapons is prohibited on any property owned or controlled by the University, including Family & Graduate Housing. To review the complete University policy regarding firearms, please consult the University Student Rights and Responsibilities in the section titled Possession or Storage of Weapons as well as the Campus Administrative Manual in the section titled Possession of Weapons.

    Flowers and Planting

    Residents in Orchard Downs apartments may keep potted flowers or other ornamental plants in approved locations. Ashton Woods apartments do not have approved planting locations. Residents are responsible for following these planting guidelines:

    • Residents are responsible for maintaining, cleaning and weeding their plants.
    • Flowers and plants must be within two feet of the building.
    • Residents must remove their plants prior to moving out.
    • Residents must not plant flowers that will grow more than two feet high.
    • Vines (such as ivy) must not be planted.
    • Vegetables must not be planted in flowerbed locations and will be removed by grounds staff if found.
    • Plants and pots may not be stored outside from November 1 to March 31.
    The following are approved planting locations for residents:
    Orchard Downs:

    Residents may only have flowers planted in containers that can be left on the porch or walkway directly outside their apartment or placed on top of rock landscaping directly outside their apartment. These plants/containers may not block the path in or out of any apartment.

    Grill Use

    We recognize that many families enjoy grilling outdoors. Remember that your lease prohibits the use of a hibachi, grill, or other appliance in any balcony, stairwell, or entryway of any building. Family & Graduate Housing provides grills for your use in every community.

    Grills at Orchard Downs are located by the Community Center, by the playground at Hazelwood Court, behind the Family & Graduate Housing office, and behind apartment 2006 near the playground.

    At Goodwin-Green the grill is located in the courtyard.

    Ashton Woods also has grills available in the courtyards behind buildings 2217, 2303, 2307 and across the street from building 2311.

    If you do use your own grill on the lawn, keep a reasonable distance from the buildings so that the smoke does not disturb your neighbors. Family & Graduate Housing also provides trash containers for coal and ash disposals that are marked specifically “charcoal.” Coals should never be deposited in the garbage dumpsters—even if you think they are cold. Never place a grill next to a building or leave it unattended. Please use care when grilling.

    Guest Registration

    Guests and visitors are always welcome in your apartment; however, guests who will be staying longer than two weeks are required to be registered at the Family & Graduate Housing office.

    The occupancy of the apartment must not exceed the occupancy limit for the apartment type when guests are visiting. Visitors not included in the extended family category are limited to a total maximum duration of 30 days per year. Overnight guests are permitted in co-tenant apartments only if mutually agreed upon in advance of the stay.

    Lock Out: Key Lending and Card Access

    If you lose a key, Family & Graduate Housing can loan you a key while you look for your missing key. During business hours, come to the Family & Graduate Housing Office to get a loaner key that you will be able to keep for 24 hours. If your key has not been found after 24 hours, your lock will be changed, and we will provide you with new keys.

    After hours, please contact the on-call Family & Graduate Housing staff member at (217) 649-7705 for assistance.

    The fees for this service are as follows:

    • Replace mailbox key: $50
    • Replace laundry key: $50
    • Replace apartment key: $50

    Smoke, Cannabis and Tobacco-Free Campus/No Fire

    All University of Illinois campus facilities and grounds, including family and graduate housing apartments, are strictly smoke and tobacco-free. This includes tobacco for smoking and/or chewing. For specifics on this policy, please see the official policy: https://cam.illinois.edu/policies/fo-64/. Effective July 1, 2019, the state of Illinois has raised the legal age to possess and consume tobacco to 21 years of age. This is a complete prohibition of any smoking products and paraphernalia (defined as any device used in the consumption of tobacco). These materials include but are not limited to: hookahs, electronic or e-cigarettes, vaporizers/vapes or juuls. Smoking in University Housing facilities will result in a $25 charge per occurrence and escalate by that amount with each subsequent occurrence.

    The consumption of cannabis creates an unsettling odor which creates an unacceptable community disturbance. All residents are responsible for the actions of the guests that they host in their room, especially surrounding cannabis consumption prior to arrival. Although the possession and use of cannabis is allowed under Illinois state law in some circumstances, the possession or use of cannabis for medical or recreational purposes is prohibited on university property.

    Additionally, residents shall not use candles or incense anywhere within an apartment or indoor public space. Residents shall not have or permit any open or covered fire on or in any balcony, stairwell, or entryway of any building. Examples of this type of fire could be a hibachi or barbecue grill. Cooking and/or grilling within 25 feet of a building are prohibited. Please also see “Grill Use” in this handbook.

    Approval Process for Smudging & Pipe Use

    In accordance with the Federal Religious Freedom Act, 42 U.S.S sections 1996 and 1996a, smudging and pipe ceremonies are allowed in University Housing owned and operated spaces including but not limited to individual residential rooms, outdoor spaces, community spaces, and apartments with prior submission of an exception form, meeting with University Housing, and completion of an understanding agreement. Approval by University Housing is required before any event can take place. Registrations can be done at: https:forms.illinois.edu/sec/6695600

    Smudging is the use of smoke (generally from organic sources such as sage, sweet-grass, or cedar) in spiritual, religious, prayer, or faith practices most commonly used by Native Peoples. Pipe ceremonies is the use of tobacco in spiritual, religious, prayer, or faith practices most commonly used by Native Peoples.

    While the University of Illinois is a smoke-free campus and is committed to promoting a smoke and tobacco free environment for all students, employees, and visitors to campus, we must take into consideration the deeply held cultural beliefs of our Native American students, employees, and visitors to University Housing spaces. Reasonable efforts should be taken to reduce or eliminate the community impact of such smoke within the area being smudged whenever possible.


    Family & Graduate Housing provides parking facilities for residents living in the Orchard Downs and Ashton Woods apartment communities. A parking permit is required and must be renewed each academic year to park in any of the apartment parking facilities. If residents have a second car, they will be required to obtain approval from the Family & Graduate Housing Office for a second parking permit prior to parking in the Orchard Downs or Ashton Woods lots. Residents must display appropriate parking tags on the rearview mirror of the vehicle window. Only currently licensed, registered and operable automobiles may be parked in Family & Graduate Housing spaces and only in designated parking areas.

    Goodwin-Green residents who would like to park in the Goodwin-Green parking lot must go to the University Parking Department to obtain a permit.

    Residents shall not drive or park any vehicle on the grass or sidewalks, and may not mark any parking space for individual use.

    Motorcycles & Scooters

    Residents who would like to park a motorcycle or scooter on campus will need to obtain a parking permit at the University Parking Department. In addition, residents will be expected to place one of their Family & Graduate Housing issued bicycle stickers on their motorcycle or scooter.


    All residents are allowed to have fish tanks that are 50 gallons or less. Residents who require service animals will be permitted with approval. Residents in Orchard Downs and Goodwin-Green apartments shall not keep or harbor dogs, cats, reptiles, or any other animal on the premises. Unapproved animals found are subject to immediate removal by the University. Cost of removal, any damages, and cleaning will be billed to the resident’s university account.

    Ashton Woods apartments will allow pets under the following guidelines:

    Permission to keep a pet is granted at University’s sole discretion and is subject to the resident’s strict adherence to all aspects of the Ashton Woods Pet Policy, which is a separate document. Residents must obtain approval from Family & Graduate Housing and sign a pet agreement prior to obtaining a pet. Upon approval, proof of current vaccinations must be provided, and a copy of the vaccinations be kept on file in the Family & Graduate Housing office.

    Only common household pets considered to be companion animals and fish tanks of 50 gallons or less will be allowed. Farm animals, production animals and exotics will not be allowed.

    No more than two pets will be allowed in each apartment. Pets are to be kept inside the resident’s apartment. Living space where pets are housed will be kept clean, safe, and free of parasites, including, but not limited to, fleas.

    Pets will not be left for extended periods of time in any apartment, and the resident is responsible for any disturbance or nuisance caused to neighbors by their pet.

    All pets must be maintained in accordance with applicable state and local laws. Dogs and cats must wear current vaccination and identification tags at all times; vaccination tags must include current rabies tag. Pets must be maintained under a standard measure of restraint (leash or carrier) at all times when out of the apartment.

    Pet feces must be disposed of properly. It is the resident’s responsibility to remove feces from university grounds, dispose of in a plastic bag, and place that bag in outside garbage bins. Cleanup must occur immediately. Cat owners must place soiled cat litter in tied plastic bags and dispose of bags in outside garbage bins.

    If a pet attacks, bites, or behaves in an aggressive or threatening manner, the animal is subject to immediate removal from the community.

    Pets must be contained when a University Housing staff member needs to enter the apartment for completing a work request, routine maintenance, or pest control. When submitting a maintenance Work Request, pet owners must include information about their pet so that a scheduled visit may be arranged.

    Prohibited Items

    Resident shall not attach an aerial, awning, or clothesline to the exterior of the building, nor affix anything to the exterior of the premises, including plastic coverings over windows. Plastic coverings over windows will only be acceptable during winter months and must be approved window kits distributed by Family & Graduate Housing. Window kits must be removed each spring by the resident. Satellite dishes may not be installed. The use of trees, grass, balcony railings, or picnic tables for washing or drying personal belongings is prohibited. Cut, real trees are prohibited on the premises due to the safety hazard they pose. Residents are not permitted to install, use, or store a mechanical clothes washer or dryer, a mechanical dishwasher, or a waterbed on the premises.


    Goodwin-Green residents have access to large storage cages in the basement of each building. The cages are in a locked area; however, the cages are not completely enclosed. You may request a storage cage online or at the Family & Graduate Housing office. Residents are responsible for securing their belongings and the University does not take responsibility for the resident’s property. Residents must provide their own personal lock for their storage cage.

    Balcony areas may not be used for storage (e.g. mattresses, household furniture, clothing, clothesline, auto parts, etc.). Balcony areas may only be used for outdoor furniture and flower containers. The only outdoor furniture allowed is folding lawn chairs and plastic resin stacking chairs designed for outdoor use. These items are approved for public storage April 1 to October 31 only.

    Stairways, lawn or sidewalk areas, the area under stairways, elevators, lounges, or entryways must not be obstructed or used for children’s play or for storage of personal belongings, including but not limited to bicycles, children’s toys or strollers, household furniture, volatile substances, shoes, etc. We understand that it is custom or habit for many residents to slip their shoes off at the door before entering their apartment; however, Fire Codes prohibit the storage of any kind of footwear in hallways or apartment entryways. These small items could easily trip someone who is trying to escape from fire or smoke, and they could get in the way of fire fighters and their equipment.

    The only item allowed in the hallway or entryway of an apartment is a welcome mat with a nonskid backing placed directly in front of the apartment entry door.

    Indoor furniture that is left outside will be treated as abandoned property and disposed of immediately.

    For safety reasons, personal property must be stored away from the hot water heater and the furnace in each apartment. Residents are not allowed to store any items in furnace rooms as this creates a fire hazard. Residents must not attach anything to the plumbing fixtures or store clothes on heaters, furnaces, or on balconies.

    Family & Graduate Housing reserves the right to remove all obstructions and dispose of those items at its discretion. Family & Graduate Housing is not responsible for any loss or damage to items being  improperly stored or removed.

    Trash Disposal & Recycling

    University Housing provides garbage collection six days a week. Large garbage dumpsters are located in the parking lots in Orchard Downs and Ashton Woods. At Goodwin-Green, garbage dumpsters are conveniently located outside of 300 S. Goodwin and 1107 W. Green. Please place garbage inside the dumpster, not on the ground around the dumpster. Family & Graduate Housing and University Housing are committed to our recycling program, and we hope residents will support it as well. University Housing does not provide glass recycling. Several drop-off sites are available throughout the Orchard Downs and Ashton Woods communities. At Goodwin-Green, recycling bins are available outside 300 S. Goodwin and inside the 1107 W. Green building. Please drop materials off at these sites.

    Air Conditioners

    Orchard Downs

    Family & Graduate Housing supplies one window air-conditioning (AC) unit for the Orchard Downs apartments. Note that the electricity used by the AC unit is part of your power bill. Residents should contact Maintenance if they are experiencing problems with their air conditioner.


    Family & Graduate Housing supplies window air-conditioning (AC) units for the Goodwin-Green apartments. Sleeping rooms and efficiency apartments are provided one living room window unit. One-bedroom apartments are provided with one living room unit and one-bedroom unit. Please note that the electricity used by the AC unit(s) is part of your power bill. Residents should contact Maintenance if they are experiencing problems with their air conditioner.

    Ashton Woods

    Ashton Woods apartments are furnished with central air-conditioning units. Residents should contact Maintenance if they are experiencing problems with their air-conditioning system.

    Home Care

    Mold Prevention

    Mold can develop in an apartment when conditions are moist and there is little air circulation. Most often it develops when the weather is cold, windows are closed, and there is no air circulation in the apartment. Typically mold occurs in bathrooms on the walls and ceiling; it may also develop in living areas behind furniture where there is no circulation.

    To minimize mold development in the apartment please use the following suggestions:
    1. Whenever possible, keep window shades and blinds open. Closed shades and blinds block air flow across the window surface and prevent the movement of air through the apartment due to temperature change. Air flow will also prevent condensation on the windows.
    2. When the bathroom is not in use, leave the door open to allow circulation.
    3. Immediately report leaks or plumbing issues to Maintenance at 217-333-2779.
    4. Use a dehumidifier unit in the winter months.
    5. Never turn the furnace off or turn the thermostat below 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Allowing the temperature of the apartment to get below 65 degrees will in turn allow the surface temperature of the walls and floors to drop quickly. The concrete walls and floors take a long time to warm back up once they are cooled. When the furnace cycles on again, the ambient air temperature in an apartment increases quickly. The difference in temperature between the ambient air and the concrete surfaces, will result in condensation forming on the walls and floors. After allowing this to happen, it will take several days for the furnace to raise the surface temperatures enough to stop the condensation from forming.
    6. Do not store items up against walls as this will keep the warm air from heating the walls, allowing condensation to form. Cool, dark, and damp surfaces are the perfect breeding ground for mold and mildew. It is important to maintain air circulation around all items stored along walls. We also recommend that residents store in plastic bins rather than in cardboard boxes which can absorb moisture and potentially cause damage to items stored inside them.
    7. Failure to maintain a minimum ambient temperature of 65 degrees Fahrenheit in your apartment, will result in unpleasant living conditions and potential property damage to your apartment and neighboring apartments. It is the responsibility of every University Apartment leaseholder to follow the above listed recommendations.

    Pest Control

    Good sanitation practices are necessary for pest prevention. Failing to maintain a clean apartment may be considered a violation of your lease. Do not leave out food or dirty dishes, or store trash in the apartment or patio as this will attract household pests such as cockroaches, ants, rodents, etc. Pests also live in and consume cardboard boxes and the glue used to seal them. Avoid storing boxes in your apartment.

    University Housing provides pest control services to you at no cost. Pest control treatments in the apartments and common areas are done at least twice a year. Pest control treatments are mandatory and cannot be refused by residents.

    If pests or insects become a problem, please contact Maintenance to have your apartment treated in addition to the regularly scheduled treatments. Where a pest infestation is found, the entire building may need to be treated.

    Pesticides used by our staff are no more harmful than most common household cleaners, and Material Safety Data Sheets listing pest control ingredients can be obtained upon request.

    Failure to comply with pest control treatment or maintain proper sanitation can result in non-renewal or termination of a lease. If you have a pest problem, please contact Maintenance at 217-333-2779 or submit an online maintenance request.

    Bed Bugs

    There is always a risk that residents may unknowingly transport bed bugs by purchasing used furniture or mattresses in an apartment that had been inspected prior to move in. If residents suspect they have bed bugs they should contact the Family & Graduate Housing office or Maintenance immediately. This will ensure that pest control can treat the bed bug problem before it becomes advanced.

    Bed bugs are small, oval, wingless insects that reach about 1/5” in length. They have flat bodies, are reddish-brown in color, and are sometimes mistaken for ticks or small cockroaches. Bed bugs are not believed to carry diseases; however, they do bite. Bed bugs are most active at night and bite exposed areas of skin while an individual is sleeping. Bites may go unnoticed or be mistaken for flea or mosquito bites. Infestations occur when bugs or eggs are transported into apartments in suit cases, cardboard boxes, personal belongings, and old used furniture.

    Cleanliness has little to do with most infestations; however, excess clutter does give bed bugs a place to hide.