Medical Doctor Residency and Housing: What you need to know  By

Medical Doctor Residency and Housing: What you need to know

The journey to becoming a doctor is a long one. It entails four years of undergraduate studies to get a bachelor’s degree, four years of medical school, three to eight years of residency depending on your specialty, and possibly a fellowship after that.

In addition, many people take breaks between these years to study for various exams such as the MCAT or USMLE. One of the most challenging parts of the medical education journey is finding safe and affordable housing during medical school or during their internship or medical residency. After all, this is the time where doctors leave medical school and go through additional training for low pay. 

Whether you’re in medical school, doing your intern year or applying for residency or fellowship, it’s important to have the right housing. Fortunately, SabbaticalHomes understands the grueling process that physicians go through, and our platform makes it very easy for doctors and students to find housing all over the world during a busy and stressful time. If you are in the process of becoming a medical doctor, we have the information to help you find a place to call home during this time in the United States.

Related: 5 Simple Steps to Get Started on Sabbatical Homes.

Ten Medical Schools in Expensive US Cities

Ten Medical Schools in Expensive US Cities Image. Photo of skeleton in medical school classroom.

Becoming a physician is an exciting journey, but searching for a place to live during these years can be difficult.

Many well-known and highly-ranked medical schools and teaching hospitals tend to be located in expensive areas in America. Fortunately, SabbaticalHomes has affordable home rental listings in many of these areas.

Here are ten medical schools located in expensive U.S. cities with housing options in the area:

1. Housing Near Harvard Medical School

It’s no doubt that Harvard University is ranked as one of the top medical schools in the United States. Located in Boston, Massachusetts, people often don’t need a car because of the convenience of the subway system.

There are plenty of more affordable places to live nearby such as Arlington, Cambridge, Somerville, Watertown, and more. Monthly rent for a home in the Boston area can range from around $1,500 to 4,000 per month.

2. Housing Near University of California, Los Angeles School of Medicine
(David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA)

The great part about taking on an intense medical education at UCLA is being in sunny and beautiful Southern California. There are studios available in places like Beverly Grove that come beautifully furnished around $950 a month.

If you have a little extra money to spend, you can opt for a fully furnished condo for about $3000 per month. Usually, students live in Los Angeles areas such as Westwood, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, or Santa Monica.

3. Housing Near UC Davis School of Medicine

The cities of Davis, CA and the nearby capital of California, Sacramento, are both excellent places to live while going to medical school. You can expect a charming bungalow to cost around $2,600 per month or a furnished house to cost around $2,300 per month. It is possible to find apartments for $1,300 per month as well.

4. Housing Near University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson

If you love hiking, then you will love Tucson, Arizona. There are amazing trails and caves for you to explore. After all, medical school can be exhausting, so why not get a dose of mother nature to rejuvenate?

Luckily with Arizona, there are amazing places to live that are not too far from the medical school and are more affordable. A comfortable place in Tucson can range around $1200 to $2300 per month.

5. Housing Near University of Michigan Medical School

If you love nature and don’t mind the cold, you will definitely enjoy living in Ann Arbor, Michigan. During this stressful time of your life, it’s nice to be able to take a break from your work or studies and enjoy the beautiful scenery that Michigan has to offer. Be prepared to spend anywhere from $750 to $3500 per month.

6. Housing Near The University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine

Chicago, Illinois is known as the windy city, but it is also appreciated for having great pizza, restaurants, and places to explore. Here are some housing options during medical school or residency here in Chicago; you can get a fully furnished place where you can walk around the city for just $1100 per month. You can also get a fully furnished condo for $2,000 per month.

7. Housing Near Baylor College of Medicine

If you love juicy barbecue, then you will love living in Houston, Texas during your medical training at Baylor. You could find a bright spacious apartment in the Museum District for just $1000 per month or an elegantly furnished condo for $2,900 per month, depending on your budget.

8. Housing Near Stanford Medical School

Palo Alto and Silicon Valley are the home of the tech industry, and of course the prestigious Stanford Medical School. Because of that, places to stay in Palo Alto and Stanford, California tend to be much pricier than some of the other locations on our list.

Housing ranges from $6,000 to $10,000 per month! Many medical students and residents have a couple (or a lot!) of roommates if renting a home while working or studying at Stanford Medical School.

9. Housing Near NYU School of Medicine

New York is definitely a city that never sleeps and you might find yourself studying until the sun comes up at NYU Medical School. New York has a lot of great entertainment and restaurants that can help lower any stress after exams.

Living in Manhattan can be costly, but there are many options for housing in New York on If you want something private and more family-oriented, then you can rent out a furnished homes in areas like Bloomfield, NJ for around $2800 per month.

10. Housing Near University of Washington School of Medicine

The University of Washington is in a location filled with history and culture. The best way to absorb its legendary ambiance is to find a great place to live in Seattle, Washington so you can really experience the city when you have a free moment between classes and work. A furnished and spacious home or condo can cost around $2000 to $3900 per month, depending on the size and location in Seattle.

Related: Faculty Q&A: Dr. Alexander Green Discusses Disparities in Healthcare

What is Residency for a Doctor?

What is Residency for a Doctor? Image. Photo of medical students.

Residency references the additional years of training after medical school that doctors go through. Many people consider SabbaticalHomes to look for various housing options during these years of training that occur after medical school.

How Long is a Doctor’s Residency?

The length of time in residency depends on the type of specialty and your institution. For example, primary care such as family medicine, internal medicine, psychiatry, and pediatrics will take around 3 to 4 years to complete, depending on the institution.

Specialties such as radiology, neurology, pathology, dermatology, and anesthesiology will take around 4 years to complete. Other more grueling specialties, such as general surgery and orthopedic surgery, will take approximately 5 years, and neurosurgery will take 7 to 8 years. 

Either way, SabbaticalHomes has got your back when it comes to finding an affordable, convenient, and comfortable place to live while you concentrate on saving lives.

What You’ll Need During Your Medical Internship or Residency

Medical internships and residency usually mean working 80 hours a week; here are some things to make working that hard a little easier.

Adequate Housing

Adequate Housing Image. Photo of houses from bird's eye view.

It’s important to find a safe and proper housing at an affordable price. The best thing to do is to consider housing that is already furnished, so you don’t have to waste time and money renting or purchasing furniture. You want accommodations that are located in a safe neighborhood and near the hospital so that you won’t have to worry about your safety nor getting to work late.

Student Doctor Residency Housing Options

Off-Campus Housing

If you decide to live off-campus, it’s best to find a place that is already furnished and affordable. You can use SabbaticalHomes to find like-minded professionals to rent from or possibly to share a home with.

Many members are doctors, residents, and medical school grads who use the website to find places to live, making it easier to find roommates in the medical field. After all, medicine is a challenging journey, so why not find a group of passionate and supportive individuals who can help you succeed during your medical journey.

Related: University Off-Campus Housing Sites

On-Campus Housing

On-campus housing tends to be more affordable, already furnished, and have roommates. Usually, on-campus housing costs around $600 to $2000 per month. It really depends on what type of housing you choose.

Another thing to keep in mind is that a lot of on-campus housing does not allow pets or family members. If you have a significant other and/or children, then it’s best to find off-campus housing through a source like

House Hacking

House Hacking image. Photo of woman counting dollar bills.

In markets with lower housing costs, it may make more sense financially to buy rather than rent if you are planning to live there for a few years (or keep the property as a source of rental income).

House hacking is an excellent way to pay off a mortgage, rent, or make some extra income while you finish your medical training. You can invite other interns or residents to live with you and have them pay monthly rent. This strategy will help you pay off your mortgage and could increase your savings account.

With SabbaticalHomes, you can find trustworthy, like-minded members of our community who are interested in sharing your home.

With this in mind, house hacking has become a wonderful strategy to make an extra income.  If you are curious about ways to house hack, here are some ideas:

Related: City Regulations: 3 Things to Know Before You Rent or Exchange Your Home

Bring in a Foreign Exchange Student

There are some foreign exchange students who need a place to live while they pursue an education in the U.S. Some of their schooling only lasts for a couple of months.

It may be best to focus on college-age or older exchange students, who will be more self-sufficient. You can host a foreign exchange student for a couple of months and receive a monthly stipend from them or their family.

Rent Out Storage

You can empty your garage and rent it out for other people to store their belongings while you’re away. Many people will be more than happy to make monthly payments to use your garage as storage. The good part about this is that you can get paid without sharing your space if that’s not ideal for you.

Above Garage Apartment

You can build an apartment above your garage and rent it out. It may cost around $10,000 to make this happen, depending on permits* and construction costs, but if you rent it out for $1000 per month, you can receive your return on investment in under a year.

*Research if this is allowed in your area.

Basement Apartment

Converting an unused basement to a functional space to rent out is a great way to maximize the income generated by your home. In order for a basement to qualify as a bedroom that can be rented, it will require at least one window that is 24 inches tall and 20 inches wide, and no higher than 44 inches from the floor. This requirement is so the window can be used as a fire escape in case of a disaster. Plan for space for a bathroom, a kitchen or kitchenette, and a bedroom, although that can be combined with the living room if it’s a studio layout. 

Related: Home Listing Photo Tips

Take Home Message

If you have successfully matched into the residency of your dream, then the first thing on your mind should be finding a home. can help you find a furnished place at an affordable price so you can focus on your medical training.

If you want roommates, you can connect with people in the same field, save a little more money by splitting costs, and build an amazing support system along the way.

Related: Tops the List of 9 Best Alternatives to Airbnb.

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