Be the Coolest Kid On the Block With Off Campus Housing
Some may say that entering college is taking the first real step towards adulthood. Mom and Dad suddenly aren’t there policing your every move — you’re responsible for showing up to class, doing all your work on time, managing your academic and social schedule, and more. For those who move into off campus student housing during their undergraduate career, this first step becomes even bigger. Suddenly you’re responsible for paying your rent, any utilities, buying groceries and cooking, doing your own laundry, and more! It can feel very freeing for some and very overwhelming for others. However, living in off campus apartments can be a great way to stretch your wings and provide you with different opportunities than living on campus.
Why Choose Off Campus Housing Instead of the Dorms?
First and foremost, living off-campus may save you a hefty bundle — important when you’re already facing steep tuition fees. Room and board can often tack upwards of $10,000 extra. Looking for apartments that offer monthly or semesterly rent and buying your own groceries can often save you half of that. Additionally, with off-campus housing, you have more privacy. You can choose to live on your own or with friends, but in most cases, you’ll have your own room. Many students prefer off-campus housing because of the extra privacy they get. Off campus plans are also a good back up plan if on campus housing gets too full.
What Should I Look For In An Off-Campus Apartment?
You’ll want to make sure that you’re getting what you paid for. Make sure appliances work, that there’s no mold or water damage present in any of the rooms — things that can cause structural issues and even health problems — and that you know what existing damages and problems are already present with the apartment. This way, if the landlord tries to charge you for them, you can reliably tell him that they were there before you moved in and won’t have to be financially responsible.
Know what outside costs you’ll have to pay for and what you would have to replace if they got damaged or broken — that’s important in maintaining your budget. When looking for apartments, It’s also important to know how safe your location is and how close it is to amenities like grocery stores and campus.
Who Will I Live With?
When looking for apartments, many times friends will choose to look together. However, if you’re a first year student or don’t really know anyone, many times the college will facilitate rooming prospects. Get in touch with their residence life staff — they often have a list of those living off campus and who are seeking roommates. If your campus is in a bigger city and you live off campus there, there are many housing websites available where you can link up with someone. Your graduating class may also have a social media page where you can connect with other people looking for housing.
Moving into your first apartment can be an exhilarating experience, especially with good planning and foresight. The extra responsibility can be a great way to prepare you for post-graduate life and you’re sure to make many good memories.