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Ball State readies list of quality off-campus housing options

By Stephanie Wiechmann, IPR News | Published on in Ball State, Business, Community, Local News
Ball State students move into residence halls at the beginning of the school year. (Photo: Ball State University on Facebook)

Ball State University is nearly ready to make decisions about applications from local landlords and property managers that want to participate in the school’s new off-campus housing quality program. As IPR’s Stephanie Wiechmann reports, the initiative comes after local renters spoke out about poorly maintained homes.

Ball State does not mandate any students live in on-campus housing, not even freshmen. Part of that is that there’s not enough room for all of them. And Ro Ann Royer Engle, Vice President of Student Affairs, says each student needs the best environment for them.

“There are some students – the residence hall experience is for them.  They thrive in it.  I was one of those nerds, lived in my hall all four years until my senior year.  But there are some students that it is not for them.”

Ball State’s new Off Campus Quality Housing Initiative aims to hold landlords and property managers to higher standards and will list their properties as options on the school’s off-campus living website.  Again, Royer Engle.

“And although we can’t control what happens in off-campus housing, we can certainly empower students and develop standards and criteria for the kind of living spaces we want our students to be in.”

Ball State says with a week to go before the deadline, about two dozen people and companies had applied for this year’s list.

Recently, Muncie’s Middletown Property Group, LLC, which manages more than 1,000 rental properties in the city, was investigated by the state attorney general’s office for alleged deceptive practices and poor maintenance. A settlement has the company paying back renters a total of $35,000.

Read More: Muncie asks state lawmakers for more renter’s rights protection and asks other cities to join

Ball State officials also say 600 more students live in on-campus residence halls and Ball State-owned apartments this year.

Stephanie Wiechmann is our Managing Editor and “All Things Considered” Host.  Contact her at slwiechmann@bsu.edu.