As college students, there may come a time during their college career when on-campus living just does not cut it anymore. Aside from the cost, sharing a living space (especially a bathroom) with three other people just begins to sound unappealing. As the years progress, a number of students begin to venture into the world of off-campus living. Planning ahead is a key step in apartment hunting. The process of planning involves a few steps.
The first step, and arguably one of the most important steps in apartment hunting is to determine a budget. It’s important to remember that living in an apartment that costs more than a specified budget, will only end in disaster. The purpose of living off campus is to find something better than on-campus housing. Some students argue the benefits of living in an apartment, rather than on campus.
“After I found my apartment, I compared it to when I lived in a dorm. It is $200 cheaper for me to live on my own,” said one sophomore.
As cheesy as it sounds, location is definitely something to keep in mind while apartment hunting. Living off campus means that students will be commuting to and from school. How long is the drive from the apartment to campus? Keep in mind that parking will now cut into the time allotted for getting to class. Is the apartment in a safe neighborhood? If a student plans on living alone, this is an extremely important fact to consider. Treat off campus living the way you would treat on-campus living when it comes to location.
Roommates or not?
You may be thinking, “Isn’t the point of living off campus not having a roommate? Well in reality, not every college student can afford to live on their own. Students will be able to split the cost of an apartment. Also, if you’re lucky, you may be able to find a place where you don’t have to share a bathroom with anyone. Choosing the perfect roommate is just as important as selecting an apartment.
Roommate selection is so important. You have to find someone you can depend on to be on time with payments, be available when you need them and also be friendly enough that you can support each other when you need it most.
Needless to say, roommate selection can make or break your entire apartment experience.
There are a number of other things to consider when moving into an apartment, but it is most important to remember that searching for your first apartment is meant to be an enjoyable and exciting journey. Stressing about every minute detail can turn the whole experience into a nightmare. So, keep the positive aspects of apartment hunting in mind, because it could be much worse.