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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at VCU chapter.

Picking your first choice dorm on your freshman year housing application is a pivotal moment. Will you decide to live suite-style and share a bathroom with three others or will you opt for the community bathroom and share a bathroom with the whole floor? At first glance, sharing a bathroom with a floor of close to 50 people might immediately sound like the short end of the stick. However, there are some definite pros and cons of community bathrooms.

Pro: Community bathrooms are cleaned by university cleaning staff. You don’t have to buy bleach or Clorox wipes like other students who live in suite-style dorms.

Con: The cleaning staff comes by every day….Monday through Friday. Unfortunately, after the weekend festivities are the times when you’ll wish the bathroom got cleaned every 20 minutes.

Pro: Paper towels and soap are provided. You won’t have to purchase any of these items.

Con: When paper towels or soap run out, you have to wait until the next day when the cleaning staff comes by again. Invest in some hand sanitizer and a hand towel just in case.

Pro: Toilet paper is provided. You don’t need to purchase any, unlike a suite-style dorm.

Con: All of the provided toilet paper is one-ply….need I say more?

Pro: You’ll never have to wait for a shower stall. With five or more stalls, the chances that five more people want to shower at the exact same time you do is pretty slim.

Con: Your favorite stall might be taken when you want to use it.

Pro: There’s never a wait to use the bathroom.

Con: Having to walk down the hall to use the bathroom every time gets old really quick.

Pro: Running into the same people in the bathroom kind of makes you instant-friends.

Con: Sometimes these run-ins include the times when you’re throwing up after a Friday night, fresh out of the shower with no make-up or woke up in the middle of the night and really had to pee.

Pro: People respect your privacy and don’t give you a second glance when they see some of your questionable bathroom habits.

Con: People don’t respect the time of day they use hairdryers or play music while they shower or go through their daily shower rituals.

Pro: There’s always hot (or cold) water when needed.

Con: The water pressure isn’t always the best.

Pro: There’s an area to leave your shower items in the stall.

Con: Instead of being able to leave your belongings in the shower, you have to carry them with you each time. And if you drop anything in the deep, dark crevices of the shower stall, you might as well forget it ever existed.

Pro: You don’t have to clean your hair out of the drain like you have to at home.

Con: You’ll have to deal with hair–lots of other people’s hair– in the shower, too.

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