Whether you’re a new or returning student, housing issues play a major role in your college planning process. On-campus and off-campus housing have various pros and cons.
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution for student housing, since each resident has particular needs and preferences. But four of the main considerations that college students face before choosing a student housing option are listed here.
Most college housing websites are fairly transparent with their dorm pricing structures, which allows you to get a baseline idea of how much campus housing will cost. It’s important to note, however, that many dorms are filled on a first-come first-served basis, so you should apply early to get the best rates.
Before committing to on-campus housing, be sure to scrutinize apartment listings near your campus. If you begin your search early, you might be able to secure your own room or apartment for a significantly lower price, depending on the real estate market in the surrounding neighborhood.
2. Commute time
Commuting expenses can be a significant factor in your housing decision. While you might score a great off-campus apartment, it might be far enough from campus that you get stuck with high gas or bus pass expenses.
Part of the appeal of campus-based housing is that you live near your classes. This can give you a major time and convenience advantage, since you won’t have to fight through commuter traffic at 7 a.m. to get to school.
Think hard about the amount of time and money you’ll need to shell out because of your housing decision.
Low rent and school commuting time aren’t the only expenses you’ll need to contend with. Use a mapping service, such as Google Maps, to get a clear idea of the amenities in your area.
Do you have easy access to grocery stores, libraries, gyms, and other desirable services? If off-campus lodging is isolated from these amenities, then you might get more out of living on-campus.
Take a tour of your future home and make sure it’s a safe environment before signing a lease. Broken facilities or faulty furnishings can conceivably lead to a personal injury case.
If you notice problematic environments in a prospective home, then opt for other options.
Leaving your family home to attend college is a major life change for most students. You can have the best experience by comparing the expenses, convenience, amenities, and safety factors of off-campus versus on-campus lodging before making your decision.