are they really charging to cancel rooms. i never had to pay before i normally call the hotel directly and they take care of it.
Typically you can't call the hotel directly if you booked through con housing until the information has been transferred over -- I think it's usually a week or so before the event that it's in the hotel system. Not sure where you're getting info on being charged for a cancellation from ... That usually only happens if you cancel too close to the event, which is usually outlined in hotel policies.
On the FaniHousing website it says if you cancel after:
Cancellation Deadline: Last day to cancel is Friday, April 27, 2012. After this date, a cancellation penalty of one night's room and tax will apply.
I would imagine that you could still call and cancel through the hotel once the information is there which from Fanime should be:
DO NOT CALL THE HOTEL DIRECTLY FOR CHANGES OR CANCELLATIONS UNTIL Friday, May 18, 2012.
I tried asking about the details a while ago but as far as I know there was never a response.