Two Students walk by the VIU Residence

Explore Your Housing Options

Nanaimo is a diverse community with many different accommodation options to choose from.  It is important to find an option that works best for you, so that you can feel settled and comfortable before starting your studies.  The following are some of the options to consider while you study at Vancouver Island University (VIU). Note that some options have application deadlines several months ahead of your arrival.


VIU Residences are on the Nanaimo campus, close to classes, cafeterias and recreational facilities. Living in Residences is about building lasting relationships with other students from around the world. Accommodation choices include single private rooms with semi-private bathroom to shared double rooms. Student Residences have kitchen facilities. You can also buy meals in two campus cafeterias, open weekdays during school hours.

Learn more about VIU Residences

Off-Campus Housing

Off-Campus Housing is private, rented accommodation. Students search for accommodation and sign a legal contract with a local landlord.  There are different types of accommodation to choose from and choices to make about your budget. The housing market in Nanaimo can be a challenge to navigate and it may take time finding your new home. Find out more about the local housing market and learn about renting in British Columbia as soon as possible.

Learn more about Off-Campus Housing


Homestay is an opportunity to live with and be part of a Canadian family. Your host family may provide meals and you help around the house and become a regular member of the family. Homestay offers a supportive environment to learn and practice your English language. It is a unique experience where you can learn about Canadian culture and make life-long friends.

Learn more about Homestay