Making the Move off Campus as Smooth as Possible

College is more than just a given place: it’s a chapter in a person’s life—and an incredibly important, formative one at that. For example, a big moment in a person’s life may come when, during their college years, they finally move off campus and rent their first home or apartment. The act of moving off campus is something that many college newcomers anxiously look forward to (lots of schools oblige their students to live on campus for the first year), but for which they are not necessarily properly prepared. There are several factors to keep in mind when planning a move off campus, from the obvious consideration of how much money the housing arrangement will cost per month to the less obvious considerations of convenient location, general neighborhood safety, and so on. Here, we’ll tackle some of the more important factors that students moving off campus should have present to make their up-and-coming off campus debut as pleasant as possible.
Cost: Few things can be as stressful for a busy college student as not being able to make the monthly rent payments, especially if the student is personally responsible for them (as opposed to having parents that take care of the matter, or even having a line of credit to cover rent). Though renters have been known to have more patience with college students than with fully grown adults, students won’t be given the benefit of the doubt indefinitely, and will sooner or later be evicted for rent delinquency. Students should sit down with their parents or an independent financial advisor to put together a reasonable cost frame with regards to rent payments. (Tip: renting along with several other students in the same house will lower your monthly share and make moving off campus more feasible.)
Location: One of the biggest mistakes committed by students moving off campus is the fact that they wind up settling on a place a little too far afield. This may be rationalized by the fact that rents are lower the farther the place is from campus, but this argument rarely holds up under scrutiny. That’s because whatever money was saved with lower rent payments will be more than made up for by constant and hefty transit fees (the price of gas, paying bus fares, etc.), and furthermore a student’s academic performance may start to suffer as a result of being so far flung. While somebody living on or near campus will be able to rush to class after ignoring their morning wake-up alarm, a student with a considerable distance to cover (especially when they don’t have a car) will pay dearly for the same immaturities that any college student is likely to display at one point or another.
Safety: Especially for colleges that happen to be in the inner city or located in or near areas of higher than average crime rates, moving off campus can raise serious safety concerns. If you do move off campus in an area where safety concerns are legitimately grounded, try to rent in an area where friends and contacts abound, thus taking “safety in numbers” in a certain way. Or perhaps you could choose a neighborhood with a private security service; there are many options for increasing security, and it is worth looking into them all.