Housing Allowance (주거지원비):

The housing allowance is 400,000 Won, and should be used in lieu of the provided housing from your school.

If you are on your way to Korea for the first time and would like to opt for the housing allowance, you must let EPIK (the national office) know prior to the beginning of your contract. You must also provide EPIK with a valid mailing address in Korea prior to arrival in order to qualify for the housing allowance.

If you're a renewing teacher, you must let your school know that you'd like to switch to the housing allowance at least 2 months prior to the beginning of your contract (in the case of a renewing teacher who is transferring schools, you must clear it with your new school). This is so that you give your school ample time to apply for the money, and to also close all accounts with your current landlord. You do not require permission from the DMOE to ask for the housing allowance. Additionally, your school is obligated to provide the housing allowance if it is requested.

The housing allowance should be included with your paycheck, once a month (or separately, but it must be once a month).

Housing allowance is included as taxable income.

PLEASE NOTE: If you choose to opt for the housing allowance, it is your sole responsibility to look for, and look after your apartment. Any key deposits, maintenance fees, real estate broker fees..etc must be borne by you. You are, of course, able to ask your co-teachers if they would be willing to help you in any capacity, but they are not obligated to do so. Also, the DMOE and EPIK program officially permits joint housing for married couples only.

FURNITURE: If you choose the housing allowance, your school will not be obligated to provide you with any of the furniture that is stipulated in the contract. If you are a renewing teacher, please keep in mind that the furniture from your old apartment is technically the property of your school, and you may not be able to use it once you move. But, of course, you are always free to ask!

You cannot switch your housing preference in the middle of your contract; only before your contract begins.