10 Things You Should Think About Before Moving Off Campus

I get it; living on campus is awful. Between the RAs, the Twin XL mattresses, and the roommates, it can all feel like too much to handle. Those were the reasons I chose to go off campus after my freshman year of college. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize everything that went into living off campus at the time, and I wish that I had. So, if you’re getting into the apartment game, here are 10 things that you should keep in mind.

 

1. Bills suck.

I mean, they really suck. When bill time comes around and you have to hand over $90 for wifi, it can feel like you got played out of a good deal with BU. Regardless of the fact that you won’t have to deal with the BU wifi crashes, you’re going to have to deal with your own. And when your roommate is streaming Netflix while you’re doing research for a paper, you might wish you had that good, old stable BU (802.1x) to depend on. Think about all the expenses—water, heat, lights, internet, etc.—you will have and whether or not forfeiting the cost of room and board is worth it.

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2. Sharing dishes with other people generally isn’t fun.

Unless you have an absolute set of rules set forth, your roommates might end up leaving that pasta in the pot for a while. Then when you want to use it, it might involve cleaning up after others. You will be sharing a space with other people so setting ground rules about who does what chores when is key.

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3. It’s not as safe.

My apartment, for instance, got broken into and my things got stolen out of my room. I had to buy a new laptop, new camera, etc. And there was no BUPD or security guard to call for help.

                                                                                                             Image Courtesy of www.sor.org

 

4. Moving in and moving out is horrific.

You can’t just grab your sheets off your bed and pack up. There are pots and pans and furniture you have to find a place for when you move off campus.

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5. Studying abroad is about to get more complicated.

Now you’re going to have to consider subletting as a condition of whether or not you can go. And you’re going to have to store your things somewhere. It can quickly turn into a pain.

 

6. You won’t live right next to your friends anymore.

There are no more 3 a.m. conversations when you head up the elevator to your own room. You won’t want to walk home by yourself late at night and, let’s be honest, it can be real cold out there.

 

7. Roommates might not always pay.

If you get stuck with a bad roommate who just can’t pay their rent that month, it’s going to be on your shoulders. You’ll have to find the money somehow so that you can make it to the next month. Think about the unexpected situations that may come up and if you are really prepared for them.

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8. Maintenance. Maintenance. Maintenance.

If your sink clogs in StuVi, you call BU maintenance and have them come up to fix it. If your sink clogs in an apartment, you’re going to have to get in contact with your landlord and wait until they can get someone to fix it. Otherwise, you’ll have to turn into your own handy-man or shell out the cash to have someone fix it for you.

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9. The whole new world of showings

Once you’ve decided to leave your apartment, then comes the showings. That’s when a realtor who is hired to list your apartment can bring potential renters into your house and even into your room. They can open your closet, go into your bathroom, walk into your kitchen—anything they want. Coming home to a boot print on your rug is certainly not ideal, and you never know who might be walking through your home.

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10. Dining plans.

It seems like a silly thing, but cooking your own food isn’t always as fun as you think it will be. Although you can finally try those Pinterest recipes, sometimes all you want to do is eat, with no preparation, and you just might miss those dining hall tacos.

 

Although there are so many perks to living off campus, there are just as many new responsibilities that you might not be ready for. Just make sure you know all the facts before signing your name on the dotted line of that lease.