Skip to main content

Before Move-In

three students posing inside a dorm room

Residence Hall living is filled with opportunities to meet new friends, engage in the community, and live within steps of everything on campus. Your residence hall room is your “home away from home.”

Before you move in, you should consider what items to bring, what to expect from roommate relationships, and how you might decorate your room. We invite you to explore the resources offered here and get ready for this exciting next chapter in your life.

Roommate Relationships Tips

two roommates sitting on a bed

Your college roommate isn't someone you simply share space with - they can have a meaningful impact on your college experience. The best way to have a good roommate is to be a good roommate.

Learn how to create a healthy roommate relationship with tips we call the "4 C's" of campus living. 

Meet Before Move-In

Reach out to meet up or FaceTime. Connecting before move-in can help you feel more comfortable with each other.

Learn more about one another - hobbies, interests, study habits, and living together. Discuss plans for organizing your new room.

Think about how you want to decorate and who will bring larger items (curtains, TV, mini fridge or mini fridge rental, etc.).

Jim Henson Statue and Memorial Garden in front of Stamp Student Union

Roommate/Unit Agreement

Once you get to campus, make sure to complete your roommate/unit agreement.

This will guide you and your roommate(s) as you figure out how to share your space and develop a respectful, cooperative environment.

two students talking in residence hall room

Respect Items & Space

Most students are new to the roommate experience.

It’s important for you and your roommate(s) to set boundaries and expectations about property use or borrowing, and cleaning up your side of the room.

two students shaking hands in dorm room

Communication is Key

Keep an open line of communication between you and your roommate(s). Being able to talk with your roommates about concerns or issues will enhance your roommate experience!

Familiarize yourself with one another's schedules.

Agree to some ground rules and communication about guests, upcoming exams, schedules, or travel plans. Do not let issues fester.

group of students talking in dorm room

Resolving Roommate Disagreements

Resident Life staff are available to help you and your roommate work through any disagreements.

Your Resident Assistant (RA) is the first point of contact for student concerns. RAs provide a friendly, empathic ear and resources and are trained in mediating conflicts.

group of resident assistants outdoors helping during move-in

Personalizing Your Room

residence hall room decorated with Maryland gear

Decorating your room is one of the ways you can begin making a comfortable and home-like space for yourself.

Remember, consult with your roommate and the Residential Facilities advice below when decorating your room.

All University of Maryland rooms in residence halls are furnished with:

  • Twin size bed and mattress (twin XL in Pyon-Chen and Johnson-Whittle Halls)
  • Five-drawer dresser (except Oakland Hall and Prince Frederick Hall, which have three-drawer dressers)
  • Desk with drawer and shelf; desk chair
  • Personal data line

Each room also has window blinds, closet space, smoke alarm, fire suppression sprinkler, and an overhead light. Storage space may be limited to the upper shelf and floor inside the closet(s) and under the bed(s).

room in Pyon-Chen Hall with typical furnitureinside dorm room

When you arrive at your residence hall room, your furniture will be set to optimize space and airflow for the Heating and Air Conditioning Unit (HVAC) systems. If you and your roommates decide to rearrange the furniture, please keep the following points in mind:

  • Keep a minimum of 12” clearance or one floor tile from the HVAC units as well as the dehumidifier (if applicable) for moisture control
  • Keep at least 6” distance between the beds

Please note that no university furnishings may be removed from rooms or suites and apartments.

double room layout with bunk beds double room layout with beds side by side


You are free to hang posters, pictures, etc., on the walls using "blue painter's tape," which is readily available at home improvement stores, or removable poster "putty."

Residents will be charged for repairing holes in walls, doors, and ceilings caused by tape, nails, tacks, or screws, as well as other damages to the rooms and university furnishings. 

wall decorated with photos wall decorated with sticker lettering


For fire safety and health reasons, cooking is prohibited in all student rooms with the exception of a university approved microwave attached to the MicroFridge Smoke Sensor combination unit (available as a rental). This is why students in the residence halls are required to participate in an approved dining plan.

Permissible Appliances

Standalone microwaves are not approved. Microwaves are approved in dorm rooms only as part of the MicroFridge Smoke Sensor combination appliance unit (available as a rental).

Air popcorn poppers and hot water pots which have enclosed heating elements and bear the UL seal. These items should not be used in student rooms, only in a designated cooking area inside floor lounges.

Most buildings have hallway kitchenettes or floor lounges that are equipped with a microwave, stove, sink, disposal, instant hot water tap, and refrigerator (varies by building) that are adequate for cooking or cleaning utensils.

Small Refrigerators

Small refrigerators are permitted in student rooms and available as a rental from They must meet these safety specifications:

  • 3.6 cubic foot maximum
  • 1.5 normal operating amps
  • 120 volts, 60 cycle AC
  • Grounding type, 3-prong electric plug and 3-wire cord
  • Underwriters Laboratory (UL) Seal of Approval
  • Energy Star rated models preferred
residence hall lounge and kitchen student loading small refrigerator into golf cart driven by DRL staff member



Each resident has a personal high speed data line. The residence halls also have 100% wireless internet coverage. Learn more about connecting to the campus network.

Xfinity Stream

All residence hall students have free access to XFINITY Stream. Visit the Xfinity On Campus website and use your University credentials to login and learn more.


Each bedroom has telephone capabilities, including voicemail and unlimited campus calling. Residents have to request telephone and voicemail activation via the Division of IT website.

student working at desk in dorm room two CAs sitting at front desk of residence hall


Items to Bring

student with personal belongings outside residence hall on move-in day

We recommend packing light and only bringing the essential items you need. You will have closet space and storage under your bed to keep things organized.

If you are sharing the space with a roommate, talk to them in advance of your arrival about possibly coordinating the purchase or rental of appliances and other shared items. 

  • Comforter, blanket, pillows, pillowcases
  • Twin-size sheets and mattress cover (36" x 75" x 6" mattress)
  • Mattress pad
  • Under-the-bed storage boxes (10" clearance)
  • Bed risers
  • Soap, toiletries, toothbrush, toothpaste
  • Towels, washcloths
  • Shower tote bucket / or hanging shower tote
  • Shower shoes
  • Robe
  • Laundry bag
  • Detergent / softener
  • Drying rack
  • Clothes hangers
  • Refrigerator (see safety specifications above or rental options)
  • Fan
  • Alarm clock
  • Smart television
  • Carpet or area rug (recommended size is 6’x9’)
  • Full length mirror
  • Desk/floor lamp
  • 2 waste bins (one for trash, one for recycling)
  • Handheld vacuum
  • Masks
  • Flashlight, battery-powered radio, extra batteries, emergency Kit
  • First aid kit
  • Touch-tone phone (voicemail is provided)
  • Cleaning supplies (preferably “green”)
  • Alcohol wipes
  • Snacks
  • Command strips
  • Blue painter's tape
  • Lock for laptop
  • Non-damaging wall fasteners for hanging items (blue painter's tape and poster putty recommended)
  • Tapestries, flags, posters
  • Succulent plants
  • UL/CSA approved power outlet strip with integrated circuit breaker (consider “smart power strip” to save energy)
  • Laptop and category 5 ethernet cable, no longer than 14 feet
  • Lock for laptop
  • Backpack (consider waterproof options)
  • Notebooks / pens / pencils
  • Desk organizer
  • Desk lamp (consider CFL or LED bulbs; no halogen bulbs, no lamps with gooseneck arms and plastic shades)
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Reusable mug/cup, straw, plate, fork, and spoon
  • Reusable shopping bag(s)
  • Hammock
  • Raincoat /umbrella
  • Hand truck
  • Packing bags / bins
  • Patience, positive energy, great attitudes
  • QAM-ready television and 15- to 20-foot cable (HD digital service in residence halls)
  • Small appliances (UL/CSA approved, ENERGY STAR certified models preferred)
    • Small refrigerator rental or purchase (3.6 cubic foot maximum, ENERGY STAR certified)
    • Air cleaner or air ionizer with UL Seal
    • Keurig hot drink dispensers (consider purchasing a reusable K-cup filter)
  • Window fan and room fans
  • Touch-tone phone with standard plug, line cord (voicemail is provided)
  • Carpet remnant or rug (the recommended size is 6’x9’)
  • Curtain (if desired, windows have installed blinds)
  • Cleaning supplies (preferably “green”)
  • Dustbuster/vacuum
  • Waste bins

  • Extension cords or power strips, surge protectors are permitted
  • Boxes, trunks, suitcases, etc., except what fits under your portion of bed (10" clearance) or closet
  • Clothing that must be hung in the closet that exceeds 2'-3' width
  • Excessive or bulky winter clothing and gear (keep in mind that you have limited closet space and some time before you will need those items)
  • Extra seating or other furniture
  • Excessive amounts of clothing, books, posters, and personal effects
  • Cinder blocks
  • Lamps with gooseneck arms and plastic shades
  • Disposable water bottles
  • Air-fryers (unless assigned to an apartment that has a kitchen and areas set up for cooking)
  • Bed risers with outlets
  • Extra-tall bed risers
  • Extension cords or power strips, surge protectors are permitted
  • Candles (lighted), incense, fireworks, weapons
  • Candle warmers
  • Electric skillets, hot plates, or any appliance with open or exposed heating element or coil
  • Toaster, toaster oven, skillet, crock pot, etc.
  • Halogen bulbs
  • Private air conditioner, space heater
  • Masking or cellophane tape, nails, or other products that damage paint/wall surfaces
  • Wallpaper and vinyl flooring stickers
  • Partitions, room dividers, and other structures
  • Microwaves (permitted only as part of a MicroFridge Smoke Sensor – available as a rental)
  • Alcoholic beverages (if under age 21)
  • Illegal drugs (grounds for dismissal), drug paraphernalia
  • Pets

Vendor Information

We work with Collegiate Marketing, Inc. and to provide bed loft and refrigerator rentals to residence hall students. 

A bed loft is a metal frame that supports the mattress and bed supplied by the University and provides space beneath the mattress for furniture. All triple rooms are furnished with a bunk bed, and a metal bed loft with a safety rail provided by Residential Facilities at no charge to residents.

Additional information and rental agreements may be initiated by visiting the Bed Loft website.

Multiple fridge rental unit types are available for rental to residents of all University residence halls. offers both the Fridge/Freezer Combo, as well as the MicroFridge Unit (Fridge/Freezer/Microwave all in one) for all residence halls.

The MicroFridge Smoke Sensor unit is the only approved use of a microwave in any individual residence hall dorm room.

Additional information and rental agreements may be initiated by visiting the website.

Back to Top