Before you start college one of the main things to think about is where you are going to live. Campus student housing? Off campus housing? Regular renting? Roommates? There are many things to consider it can almost be a little overwhelming at times. Here are a few tips to help you in making the right decision.
First of all: campus student housing. Let’s look at the pros:
- It is easier to be involved.
- You have better access to the computer labs and library etc.
- You will likely be living closer to friends.
- Less of a commute to class so possibly no car needed.
- No cost of bus or gas to get to school.
- Ability to meet with adviser more often.
- Ability to see professors more often.
- You pretty much have to stick to their meal plan.
- Probably roommate means limited privacy.
- No chance to take a break from the campus environment.
- Have to share appliances like washers and ovens.
- Student housing restrictions on parties.
- Sharing the shower and bathroom.
Off campus living pros and cons are pretty much just the reverse of the above reasons. However, if you were going to live off campus for rent student apartments here are some good questions to ask before signing the lease.
- Or any utilities included in the rent?
- If not, what is the typical cost of each of the utilities?
- Are pets allowed?
- If so, is there a fee?
- Does the house or apartment have air conditioning and heating?
- Are there washing machines inside the home or shared?
- If shared, who uses them?
- Is there parking available?
Keep in mind that if you stay in student housing or your own apartment there will be other students looking for housing so you have the option of a roommate. There are advantages and disadvantages to having a roommate.
- Help with the rent
- Help with cleaning
- Automatic friends
- Never a lonely atmosphere
- Everything is shared even if it’s not intended to be
- They may not be the cleanest person
- No guarantee you will get along
So here you have the pros and cons of several options. If you are still feeling a little overwhelmed at the thought of it all, take things one step at a time. Decide first if you want to live alone or with people, on campus or off campus and from there things get a lot less complicated once that decision has been made.
Deciding on campus student housing can be a fun job or a stressful one, it really ends up being what you make of it. Chances are, if you make it a fun job, it’ll be a fun living experience but if not, well, you’ll probably regret your choice anyway! What other pros and cons can you think of or what other living arrangements are there?