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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Wash U chapter.

It’s my first year living off campus, and adjusting to apartment life can take some time! There’s the added commute to classes but also the freedom of not being in a dorm. Here are some of the tips I have for making your apartment a warm and welcoming place.

  1. Try different layouts! In the dorms, there are only a few ways you can arrange the bed and desk, but you may be living in a bigger room now or have different window placements that open up more possibilities. Personally, I spent a lot of time arranging my furniture before I found a way to give me some separation between my desk and my bed.
  2. Decorate. It may seem simple, but putting up photos of friends, motivational posters, or fun lighting makes a huge difference. You won’t realize how bare your walls are until you do it.
  3. Meet your neighbors. I live in a building with only five other units, so I knew I wanted to know everyone by name. My roommates and I baked cookies and stopped by each unit to introduce ourselves. Now it’s great to see people around the building, bringing back that social aspect of dorms.
  4. Leave the work on campus. Admittedly, I’m not the best at this, but my goal is to get all my work done on campus so that my apartment is a place of relaxation and fun. I think it’d be a great way to create a work-life balance while in school and help develop time management skills.
  5. Have a housewarming party. My roommates and I did this, taking photos of all the guests, then putting them up in the living room as a guestbook. It’s one of my favorite parts of the apartment, and it’s also a great way to gather friends and celebrate your new place.
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