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Where to Live Near UF if You Don’t Want to Live on Campus

By Gavin

Living in a dorm seems like a quintessential thing to do in college, but most students at UF only live in a dorm during freshman year. In fact, 84% of the student body at UF lives off campus.

So, once you decide you want to live off campus, where should you start your housing search?

At Sweetwater, we’ve helped hundreds of students on their student housing hunt, and we know it can be difficult to know where to even start.

That’s why we created this guide to help you begin your search for off-campus student housing options near UF.

kitchen in sweetwater's model unit

Representative image of kitchen areas at Sweetwater, featuring tile backsplash, stainless steel appliances and quartz countertops.

Where to Live Off-Campus Near UF

Because Gainesville is a college town and most of the city is centered around campus, the city is commonly divided by area rather than by neighborhood.

Two common areas that students live in that will not be discussed in this article are Sorority Row and Fraternity Row, which are home to most of the Greek houses. These areas are considered to be on campus, so we didn’t include them.

The main off-campus areas that students live in include:

Map of Gainesville Areas

University Avenue

​​For students who are very social and love to meet new people, this is the perfect area for you to live in. Most housing options on University Avenue are no more than a 10-minute walk from the bars and restaurants located in Midtown and are just across the street from campus.

Read Next: 5 Reasons Students at UF Should Live Near Campus

This area is popular for all undergraduates because it enables you to be as involved as you would like to be, both on- and off-campus.

While you save money on Ubers from the bars, you spend more money on rent, with this being one of the most expensive areas around campus to live in. However, most students would say the experience of living in this area is worth the price.


yoga room in Sweetwater

Sweetwater’s yoga studio has floor to ceiling windows which flood the space with natural light to elevate your zen experience.

With luxurious rooftop pools and parking garages available, apartments on University Avenue are built for students who value having fun and academic success equally (well, mostly equal).

Students who live in apartments in this area often attribute their ability to meet new people and try new restaurants to where they live. Students are able to mingle at the pools, meet new people in the game rooms, and pull all-nighters in the study rooms.

Overall, the student housing apartments on University Avenue definitely enable students to focus on their studies while also maintaining an active social life that keeps school fun.

Some popular apartments located on University Avenue are The Standard, Sweetwater, Hub University and Stadium House.

Read Next: Where Do UF Students Live?

Traditional Houses

North of Midtown, there are plenty of off-campus houses to choose from. These houses tend to be older, but the location is hard to beat.

Houses in this area either come with a parking spot or enable you to buy a city parking decal to use the street parking in the area.

Located just a few streets from campus, students who live in houses in this area can take a 10-minute walk to the stadium and an 8-minute walk to Library West.

Greek Houses

University Avenue is home to three fraternity houses: Pi Kappa Alpha, Delta Upsilon, and Delta Tau Delta. As with all Greek houses, you have to be a member of the organization in order to be able to live in the home associated with it.

Greek houses usually have meal plans and utilities included in rent. This means that you don’t have to pay for electricity and water usage and you don’t have to worry about buying groceries.

Each Greek house sets their rental rates individually, so we can’t estimate the average cost of rent, but typically, rent at Greek Houses falls in the middle of rent costs in Gainesville.

13th Street

Located just beyond the west side of campus is 13th Street. 13th Street is long, and there are many housing options located on it, so in order to best understand the housing options in this area, we’ve divided it into two parts: North 13th Street and South 13th Street.

The main housing option on 13th Street is student housing apartments. Popular apartments on North 13th Street are Hub on 3rd and Social 28, and popular apartments on South 13th Street are Lark, Liv+ and Lyon’s Corner.


The student housing apartments on 13th Street are complete with upscale amenities and most complexes have parking options included.

Apartments on North 13th Street are located next to Publix and Starbucks, and are just a 3-minute walk to other popular apartments on University Avenue.

Apartments on South 13th Street are about a 6-minute drive from Paynes Prairie, a popular destination for students to watch the sunset.

Overall, apartments located on 13th Street are comparable in price to apartments that are on University Avenue, but are sometimes slightly less expensive depending on the year the complex was built and their proximity to campus.

Read Next: 5 Benefits of Signing an Individual Lease

Archer Road

For students who are not as concerned about living close to campus, Archer Road housing is a great option. The main housing options in this area are student housing apartments and traditional apartments.

The housing options on Archer Road tend to be much less expensive than the housing options on University Avenue and 13th Street and most include free parking. However, they come with less luxurious amenities and students typically have to take the bus or ride their bikes to get to campus.

We hope that this article helped show you your housing options if you don’t want to live on campus but want to live near it. If you have any questions regarding housing options near UF, or would like to know more about Sweetwater, please contact our leasing staff who love to help you on your student housing search.


Gavin is the Leasing Manager at Sweetwater. He is a junior at UF majoring in Sports Management.

July 06, 2022

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