Frequently Asked Questions

DO I NEED TO ALREADY HAVE ROOMMATES OR CAN A ROOMMATE BE PROVIDED?

Any student will be accommodated at Hillside Commons. If you already have another student that you know you would like to live with, you will be placed with them, within the same apartment. If you are looking by yourself, you will be put on our “Roommate Needed List” and matched with other single tenants of the same gender using our Roommate Matching System. The roommate matching questionnaire is part of your initial application that you fill out prior to signing a lease to live at Hillside Commons. We use your answers to this questionnaire and compare them with other residents’ answers and match everyone accordingly.

ARE THESE UNITS FURNISHED?

Current units are unfurnished.

Upgraded units are completely furnished. Furnishings include: sectional sofa, coffee table, 55” SMART HD flat screen TV, kitchen table with 4 chairs, full-sized bed(s) with a dual comfort hypoallergenic mattress, desk, desk chair, stackable dresser, full-sized or walk-in closets.

WHAT APPLIANCES ARE INCLUDED?

All kitchens are supplied with a full-sized refrigerator, a range/stove, built-in microwave, dishwasher and garbage disposal. (Washer/dryer provided in Upgraded units).

ARE UTILITIES INCLUDED IN THE RENTAL AMOUNT?

HD cable, internet (100Mbps/unit), and trash are all included.

WHAT IS INCLUDED IN MY RENT PAYMENT?

Contact the Leasing Office for more details.

IS THERE A SECURITY DEPOSIT?

Yes. There is a $250 Security Deposit for every tenant. The balance will be returned to each tenant, within 60 days after the end date of the lease agreement, less any damage charges or outstanding balances that may have been incurred at that point.

WHEN DO I PAY RENT?

Rent is due on the first of each month and must be paid by the 5th of the month to avoid late fees. Students who receive Financial Aid will be accommodated to pay later if all necessary communication with management has taken place beforehand.

HOW DO I PAY RENT?

Rent payments can be made by check, money order, wire transfer, credit or debit cards ($500 limit per transaction) in the Leasing Office or online through your Resident Portal account. No cash will be accepted. Most debit cards have a daily limit for charges, so check with your bank to be sure you have the ability to make large payments before attempting payment. Convenience fees will apply to any online payment and vary depending on your payment method. College Town Communities splits these fees with you and pays half, so the fee you pay is actually half of the entire fee. Checks are the cheapest way to pay!

IS PARKING AVAILABLE ON SITE?

Onsite parking is available for tenants at NO additional charge. Every tenant MUST obtain a Parking Permit Sticker from the Leasing Office in order to be permitted to park in the onsite parking lot. Any vehicle parked in Hillside Commons parking lot without a parking sticker will be given a one-time warning or towed upon discovery, depending on the circumstance. These actions are taken to preserve safe and well-lit parking for our residents who are paying for this amenity.

WHO IS ALLOWED TO LIVE AT THESE FACILITIES?
Any student enrolled at the University of Alabama.
CAN GUESTS/ VISITORS STAY OVERNIGHT?

Any tenant is allowed to have a guest visit or spend the night at any time without the need to register or sign them in. However, a guest is NOT allowed to stay for more than 3 nights at a time, and not more than 6 nights in a 30-day span. Roommate consideration must be taken into account with all visitors. Guests must be accompanied by the tenant whom they are visiting at ALL times when inside the apartment.

WHAT SAFETY MEASURES ARE TAKEN BY MANAGEMENT?

Leasing Office: Located at 1130 Jack Warner Parkway NE (Unit 1A), Tuscaloosa AL, our fully staffed leasing office is open from 10am-5pm Mon-Friday.  Saturdays 10am-3pm.
After Hours: All residents are to call the office phone number 205-556-4528 for any after-hours issues or concerns. 
Keys and Locks: All apartment entry doors and bedroom doors are equipped with a Schlage “Key Fob” lock system.  Each of these locks are deadbolt locks, installed on solid core doors, which allow for maximum safety.  Both the keys and the locks allow management to track activity and potential misuse of any area by their individual coding. These keys are not reproducible by the resident and can be taken offline immediately in the event that a resident’s key is ever lost or stolen.  All exterior building doors lock every time they close, so non-residents are unable to enter without the assistance of a resident. If these doors are “propped open” or held open an alarm will sound after 30 seconds alerting staff and residents that the door is not closed properly.
Parking Passes: Each resident that is interested in keeping a vehicle on property must register the vehicle through the Leasing Office. Each resident is assigned a numbered parking pass that is then tracked through our software management system and monitored by BOTH or on-site staff and contracted towing service. Any vehicle found to be parking on property without a Resident Parking Pass or Registered Guest Parking Pass will be towed upon discovery.
Lighting: Both parking lot and building entry lighting are set to be on from Dusk ‘til Dawn every day, any time of year.
Security Cameras: There are also over 50 security  cameras located around the facilities covering all entrances, outdoor and indoor common areas, as well as parking areas.  Security cameras cannot stop something from happening, but they are an excellent deterrent against wrong doing.
Controlled Access: Hillside Commons has a gated entry controlling access to ONLY the residents of Hillside Commons.   The gate is securely closed after-hours, requiring residents to use their assigned key card to gain access.  Key cards are not reproducible and are unique to each resident.
Special Certifications: Certified by the University of Alabama Off Campus Rental Education Program.
Fire Protection: Hillside Commons provides a hardwired, interconnected fire protection system inside each apartment.  Every apartment unit is also provided a fire extinguisher, either under the kitchen sink or adjacent to the kitchen hanging on the wall.   All extinguishers are inspected annually by a 3rd party fire protection company to make sure that they are in working order.

WILL I HAVE A PRIVATE BEDROOM?

ALL tenants will have their own bedrooms.

HOW IS HILLSIDE COMMONS RENTED?

Hillside Commons is individually leased by the bedroom.

HOW FAR FROM CAMPUS IS YOUR FACILITY?

Hillside Commons is located 1 mile from the University of Alabama campus.

ARE PETS ALLOWED?

Hillside Commons is an animal-friendly facility. Any resident bringing an animal/pet MUST complete the Pet Addendum and pay the nonrefundable animal security deposit prior to bringing the animal into the apartment. Please contact our management office for further details.

ARE THERE LAUNDRY FACILITIES?

Residents are permitted to bring their own washer and dryer in current units.

Upgraded units include a FREE washer and dryer.

WHEN WOULD I MOVE IN?

A move-in date will be assigned upon lease signing.

HOW LONG IS A LEASE TERM?

There is an Academic year and a Full year lease term option. Check this website for specific details and pricing.

DO YOU PERFORM BACKGROUND OR CREDIT CHECKS DURING THE APPLICATION PROCESS?

Background checks are performed on every student who wants to live at Hillside Commons. A minimally invasive credit check is performed separately on the parental guarantor for the Hillside Commons tenant. There is NO cost to the tenant or the guarantor for this process.

IS THERE AN APPLICATION FEE TO APPLY FOR AN APARTMENT?

NO. There is no fee to apply to live at Hillside Commons. There is, however, a nonrefundable Administrative Fee once you have decided to complete a lease to live at Hillside Commons. This Administration Fee covers the online application process, renewal lease generation, resident and guarantor screening, resident financial ledger maintenance, and 24-7 access to the online Resident Portal. Residents wishing to renew their lease for the following year in the same bedroom will NOT have to pay a new security deposit but will have to pay a new Administrative Fee.

IS ALCOHOL PERMITTED IN MY UNIT?

Assuming you are of the legal age, you may consume alcohol in your apartment. No alcohol is permitted in the outdoor areas and we ask you to respect all community guidelines.

MAY I PAINT THE LIVING ROOM/ KITCHEN AREA/BEDROOM AREA?

No. The apartments are already painted. You may decorate your apartments with posters, tapestries, holiday lights, etc. Please use thumb tacks or nails when hanging things on the walls. Do NOT use Tape, Glue, Gummy poster hangers, 3M double sided sticky pads, etc. Do NOT use wall decals, as they will delaminate the face of the drywall. Any unnecessary damage to the apartment walls could be deducted from your security deposit.

DO I NEED TO BRING MY OWN BEDDING OR WINDOW TREATMENTS?

Hillside Commons does not provide bedding. Mattress frames and mattresses are provided, but additional bedding is not provided. Every unit will include mini blinds on each window and you may add window treatments if you desire, but the blinds must stay in place.

AM I REQUIRED TO CARRY RENTER’S INSURANCE?

We do require every tenant to carry renters insurance. Tenants may procure their own renter’s insurance policy and show College Town Communities management proof of that insurance and list College Town Communities as “Additional Insured” on that policy or tenants can work along with management to secure their Renter’s Insurance at move in by going with a third-party insurance company at that time. This is done in our Leasing Office and often represents the most inexpensive costs for the most comprehensive coverages.

ARE YOUR FACILITIES DIRECTLY AFFILIATED WITH THE UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA?

This property is rented to University of Alabama students. We work closely with the University of Alabama but are a privately-owned company.

CAN GRANTS, SCHOLARSHIPS, STUDENT LOANS, OR FINANCIAL AID BE APPLIED TOWARDS RENT?

Yes. You may use financial aid proceeds or any other 3rd party payment process to pay for your rent at any of our facilities. Typically, financial aid proceeds are disbursed directly to the student who in turn can then use those proceeds to pay for housing. If a rental payment is due and the tenant has not received their source of aid yet, proper documentation of this delay in aid must be presented to management in order to avoid any late fees to your account.

WHO DO I MAKE MY RENT OR SECURITY DEPOSIT CHECK PAYABLE TO?

Checks can be made payable to Hillside Commons.

OVER 3,500 STUDENT RESIDENTS

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