Moving Off Campus: Is It Time?

Dorm life is fun with friends nearby and you can always find a study buddy. But, after a while, you start to want your own space, make your own rules, and you certainly don't want a curfew anymore. Moving off campus is a big step toward becoming independent. Before you kiss the dorms goodbye, here are some living-off-campus tips.

The benefits of moving off campus

There are so many benefits to getting out of the dorms and on your own. You’ve probably already realized many of them.

  • Entertaining – you can have an actual get-together in your home, like an awesome housewarming party or a football watch party.
  • Room to spread out – you can finally get a queen-size bed, a dining room table and have a great closet. You don't have to worry about someone hogging the bathroom.
  • Less rules – you can light real candles. You can stay out as late as you want. Heck, you can get a DOG!

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The challenges of living off campus

In the dorms, many things are currently being taken care of for you, so you can focus on school. By moving off-campus, you’ll have more responsibilities.  Seriously consider the impact of these ramifications.

  • Budget – you’ll have rent, utilities, food cost, and a number of other expenses each month. You’ll have to stick to a detailed budget so you don't end up in the red each month.
  • Neighbors – You’ll have to get along with your neighbors. They may not all want to party with you until 4:00 AM. In the dorms, your RA tells you to keep quiet. In an apartment, the police show up at your door, then you receive a warning (or worse) from your property manager.
  • You’ll be cooking …. or spending a fortune – At the dorms, you likely have access to three meals a day. In off-campus housing, you have to provide your own meals. Cooking at home is far more cost-effective than eating out several times a week.

Moving out of the dorms and into your new place is so exciting. You finally get to have a space that is uniquely yours. It's the first step toward becoming an adult. However, it's important to realize what you’d be getting into, so you aren't caught off guard by your decision.

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Bekah Steenbock Bekah Steenbock is a freelance writer with a background in real estate and business growth. She is a native Austinite, but has called Seattle, Mankato,Milwaukee, Las Vegas and Atlanta home. Bekah, her husband and their three children love exploring the outdoors in their spare time.

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