And so, my graduate housing saga continues. After being assigned the more expensive option, and accepting that option, I've received a lease. Within that lease, of course, are a number of restrictions...
... namely, there's to be no smoking anywhere near the building, and no pets whatsoever. At the start of the UC-I graduate housing application, there are questions about cats and smoking. You can apparently come with up to 2 cats.
Hypothesis: My optimal strategy, as someone with a limited budget and allergic to cats, would have been to claim to have 2 cats. This would have guaranteed that I was assigned to the cheaper housing; since they surely don't want too many cats per apartment, that probably would have minimized my chances of being assigned to another cat while saving several hundred dollars per month - on average, enough to keep me rolling in antihistamines in the event I turned out to have to deal with one.
Now, why this information wasn't presented at the start of the process, I can guess, but I have to say I don't like that system so far. And I still have a bone to pick about the affordability of their housing. I foresee an interest in committee-work in my future.