Below you will find information that will help you in your move to Madison. Here are the topics covered:
The university offers some housing for postdocs, visiting faculty and students (e.g., the Eagle Heights apartment complex). If you are interested in University Housing opportunities, you should look here.
If you have any questions about your eligibility for Eagle Heights housing, contact housing services here.
The University has also recently set up the following website to help staff and students find off-campus housing:
You may need a UW NetID/email before you’ll able to sign in and access this resource. If you can’t access it, once UW has your appointment start date on record (e.g., after your visa paperwork has been filed), please contact us (email@example.com) immediately and let us know. We will then request a NetID for you from administration. This way you’ll hopefully be able to use the site before you actually arrive in Madison.
Here are a few brochures from a private company in town called Epic that describe the different Madison neighborhoods and give tips on how to find housing:
The document titled ‘Apartment/House Hunting Guide’ has some links to other places where apartments and sublets are advertised, so take a look at those too.
If you find a place that you are interested in and want to know more about the neighborhood, please feel free to reach out to Dr. Jonathan Lang (firstname.lastname@example.org) and ask questions. There are very few dangerous neighborhoods in the Madison area, but there are some by the lab that you might want to avoid.
Note for students/staff who are coming from out of country: Many landlords in town request US references before they allow you to sign a lease. If you have never rented in the US, you should put down Dr. Jonathan Lang, our Center Manager, as one of your primary references, as he can verify for the landlord that you have a UW appointment and meet the income requirements to travel to/remain in the country. His office phone is as follows: 608-262-7128.
Finally, if you are interested in communal living, there are a number of housing cooperatives (coops) in Madison. The benefit to living in a coop is that they are very affordable and often located in nice areas (e.g., in mansions right near the lakes). You can find more information about Madison’s coops and current/upcoming vacancies on the official website of the Madison Community Cooperative. You should be aware that not all coops are equal: They can differ in terms of how quiet they are, the quality of their location, their level of organization and cleanliness, their flexibility with regard to pets, etc. The best way to find out whether a particular coop is a good fit for you lifestyle is to looks at pics and profile information for each coop on the website and to contact the coops via email if you have any questions.
Affordable home goods for your new apartment
When people arrive from out of country/state they often need furniture and home goods right away. To this end, we often recommend that newcomers check out Goodwill and St. Vincent De Paul’s, two second-hand store chains in the area. Here is a map showing some nearby Goodwill locations, and here is a map showing some nearby St. Vincent locations. They sell used furniture, clothing, silverware, dishes, cookware, and sometimes even small kitchen appliances.
Discounted UW bus passes
As someone with a UW appointment, you are eligible to receive a discounted bus pass. As of the time of this webpage’s creation, an employee bus pass for the entire academic year (unlimited rides) costs ~$50. If you purchase the pass after the beginning of the academic year, the cost will be less as the pass will be prorated. This webpage details how to get your pass, while this webpage has location/hour information on where you can pick up your pass. Note: Although you can pay online and have your pass mailed to you, we recommend picking your pass up in person to avoid delays.
Free loaner bike to use while you are in Madison
Madison is one of the most bike friendly cities in the US, and using a bike here is a fast and easy way to get around town. Want a free loaner bike to use while you are in Madison? Check out the Redbike program. Availability is sometimes limited, so before you head down to pick up a bike call first (608-251-1663) to see whether they have any in stock.