Tips to Make Your Dorm Feel More Like Home

So move in day is finally here. You have been counting down the hours until you are able to get into that new space that you have been dreaming about for months. You get handed the keys and you rush into your new dorm full of anticipation of what is to come. However, when you open the door you look around horrified at what is in front of you and think to yourself, “Am I actually living here?”

Does this scenario bring back any memories for you? Is this something you’re nervous about happening to you? It wouldn’t be surprising, as most college dorms are less than desirable living spaces. From the beige concrete walls, the cold linoleum brown flooring, to the dirt marks stained into the wall from the last resident, it isn’t exactly the coziest space to be living in.

However, through four years of experience, I have learned that it is possible to turn this bare and dreary room into something that feels more like home; as it should.

Lighting is Everything

The overhead fluorescent light that most dorms have is without a doubt one of the most unflattering aspects of these residence halls. No one enjoys them when they step inside a dressing room for five minutes, so no one should have to deal with them within their living space. Lighting sets the mood or the “ambiance” of an entire space. Get lamps for your desk and bedside, string Christmas lights around the border of your room. But whatever you do, DO. NOT. USE. THE. OVERHEAD. LIGHT.

Photos Add Personality

Having photos of loved ones adds such a warming touch to any room, and to go one step further, putting these photos in frames instantly make a room feel more put together. The dollar store has plenty of cheap frames that you could get and spray paint for a nice decorative touch.

Area Rugs Are a Must

If you don’t already have carpeting, then getting a rug will not only make your room cozier, but it presents a good opportunity to add some decoration to your space. Get a fun pattern or color to go along with your décor.

Have a Space For Everything

I have a ton of crap, but it doesn’t necessarily seem like that because everything I own has a place it belongs. I use countless organizers and drawer systems to make sure that everything stays neat and put away so that my already small room doesn’t feel overcrowded.

Seating is Important

If you live in a dorm versus an apartment you may feel as though you don’t have much room to hang out with friends. I was able to combat this by making sure all my friends had space, and it absolutely worked as my small single room was always the hangout spot. I had a fold up chair I would keep behind one of those circle chairs I had in my room. I always had a large rug that people enjoyed sitting on (see #3), and kept my room clean to make sure there was enough space for us all (see #4). Having plenty of friends around absolutely makes where you’re staying feel like home.

Try these tips out and let us know in the comments of any tricks you have used to make you college space feel more like home!