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Abandoned Property Process


Abandoned Property: Any item left in a residential room, suite, bathroom, apartment, or community area.

Residential Area: A bedspace licensed to any person or any room, suites, bathroom, apartment, or community area within the University of Houston Student Housing & Residential Life managed space.

Community Area: Any space within and or around the building that is accessible to more than one person.

SHRL Procedure:

Student Housing & Residential Life (SHRL) identifies Abandoned Property as any item left remaining in residential areas when a person is no longer licensed to occupy that area and/or any item left at any time in a Community Area.

Residential Area

All occupants are responsible for removing from the building and premises any property which they own or used during their occupancy. Due to issues related to safety, staffing, and storage; any item left when a person is no longer licensed to occupy the residential area will be thrown away. 

Failure to remove abandoned property may result in charges for removal by the university. Removal charges may be assessed for abandoned property such as tables, chairs, sofas, refrigerators, street signs, bricks, lumber and similar items that by their nature cannot be disposed of through the normal university trash disposal system or require extra effort to remove.

Community Area

Items left in community areas may be thrown away at any time. Due to issues related to safety, staffing, and storage; any item left in a community area may be thrown away.

Items may also be, but are not required to be, reported to the University of Houston Police Department who may choose to retrieve and maintain the item(s) according to their policies.

Emergency Considerations

In the event of an emergency such as weather-related, pandemic, infectious disease, public concern or other emergency impacting the Houston, Texas area Student Housing and Residential Life (SHRL) may activate the following options for item retrieval.

For emergency considerations to be activated a declaration of emergency from an agency such as University of Houston, Regional, State, or United States of America governments should occur.

Emergency Options for Retrieval

  • Resident Item Retrieval/ Check-Out– Resident removes belongings from room and checks out at the front desk. Check out times will be designated via department communication. 
  • Proxy Item Retrieval/Check Out – Resident designates a person or group that will come and remove their belongings. The resident must email the Supervisor of Residential Desk Services (SRD) of their community to let them know the person who is picking up the belongings and what time they will be present. Proxy check out times will be designated and approved by the SHRL department. All proxies must provide identification upon arrival. 
  • Resident contacts designated SHRL staff and informs them that they their belongings are not trash but is unable to pick them up. SHRL will utilize a third-party company to pack up residents’ belongings, for a fee, that have been left behind after the resident has checked out of the Residence Hall. These items will be stored at the third-party company’s facility at the resident's expense. 
  • If the resident does not wish to retrieve their items, they should contact the SRD via email for their building to notify them that the items can be discarded as trash. If the student does not contact their Supervisor of Residential Desk Services, then SHRL will assume that these items are considered trash and will be disposed. 
Reasonable efforts will be made by SHRL to keep residents informed of processes and deadlines before they throw away any resident property. Timely notice will be given to residents informing them of these options at the outset of emergency protocol activation.