USF Students forced to pay more for housing

Posted at 4:56 PM, May 06, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-06 19:59:01-04
It’s moving day at USF.
Students and parents had with their hands full and bags stuffed to the brim. 
Some students are moving out for the summer, others tell Action News they’re leaving for good because they can’t afford it. 
“Its increasing from $706 to $828,” said Bianca Larsh. 
“That’s crazy, I would just rather find somewhere else to live,” said Samuel Hernandez. 
The university’s new housing rates comes as a shock to students who say they weren’t notified about it until after the deadline to apply for on campus housing next year.  
“I signed the deposit, I gave them money, but they told us after, and I couldn’t afford it anymore,” Larsh said. 
Kristen Dimento said she’s going to be paying nearly $400 more to live on campus next year and says she’s going to have to pay for it with student loans.  
“I’ll definitely change what I spend on and next year. I’m not going to have a meal plan just to save that money,” Dimento said. 
USF follows a national trend of universities increasing housing rates, but this is the first in four years.
Tom Miller, Vice President for Student Affairs said the increase is needed to pay for the mortgage and other debt obligations.
“We were forced to make this adjustment,” Miller said. 
Right now, 5,300 students live on campus. But next year there will only be 4,000 beds.
The decrease in numbers is because USF is tearing down several older dorms to make room for the construction of new one called the Andros Complex. 
The cost falls on students. 
“There’s a con and pro to it. Con: It's $200 more. Pro: They’re fixing things,” said Adriana Martinez a sophomore at the school. 
The housing increase was finalized in an emergency meeting with board members this week. Students who can’t afford it will be allowed out of their lease without penalty.
“We’re doing our best to be as flexible and accommodating as we can be,” Miller said. 
“It happens. I’m going to live wherever I can live at a cheaper cost,” Larsh said.