Moving into your own place as a college student is so exciting. You feel as if you are just one little step closer to adulthood which can be scary and satisfying at the same time. With the following tips you can get a small idea on what you are getting yourself into when searching for an apartment on a budget as a college student.
1. Get Used to the Idea of Roommates
In an ideal world none of us would ever need to have roommates, but unfortunately few escape the college experience without having roommates at some point. Roommates can easily become lifelong enemies, strangers or friends for life- it all depends on who you end up with. In the end it will give you some interesting stories to tell about that crazy roommate you had when you went college.
2. Try to be Roomies with People You Know
One of the best way to avoid any major conflicts in a rooming situation is to room with people you already know. As friends you will know each others habits and mannerisms, so there will be no huge unpleasant surprises. If you do end up rooming with someone you don’t know make sure that they are familiar with your schedule, habits and expectations. You don’t want to end up with a roommate in there mid-30s who expects the house quiet by 9 PM if you are a college student who likes to stay out late at night.
3. Avoid Long Commutes
It can be tempting to try to save a little bit of money by making long commutes, but with gas prices being the way they are you could end up spending the money you save on rent on gas. That is without even considering the inconvenience and cost of not having easy access to food, bathroom and other amenities throughout the day. If you would prefer to live a further away at least take the time to sit down to estimate what it will cost for you to commute to school versus what you save by living closer.
4. Consider a Furnished Room
Even if you have furniture that you could move in, a furnished room can save you a lot of work and trouble. Also, if you don’t have furniture obviously a furnished room is going to save you from a lot of purchases for now, and that can be a blessing when you are on a tight budget in school.
5. Don’t Move all of Your Stuff In
It can be tempting to move all your books, posters, decorations and everything else into your new place from home, but I generally advise against it if your parents don’t mind holding onto the stuff. If you are just going to be living in the place for relatively short-term, moving all off this stuff over and over again gets old very quickly.
6. Be Careful on How Long You Sign a Lease
A year-long lease may not sound that long when you sign it, but life throws us all sorts of curve balls. When moving into a place, especially with roommates, signing short lease to make sure everything runs smoothly. You don’t want to end up stuck in an apartment due to a lease, because it really is one of life’s least favorable positions.
7. Allow Yourself to be Excited
Moving into your first place is a huge deal! Be as giddy as a child on Christmas Eve, no one is going to judge you!