Young people are ready to invest much in proper education, especially when it comes to high-quality education abroad. The USA is one of the largest and most popular student destinations and it works hard on making foreign students feel welcomed. One of the most important things U.S. schools offer students is housing. On-campus accommodation is available to all students and has decent conditions. However, if a person isn’t interested in living in a dormitory, they are not left on their own. Every establishment is ready to offer advice on how to find the best rental properties.
Such an arrangement has its own ups and downs, just like on-campus offers. A student has to think carefully on all sides of agreeing to either of those options. Freshmen should be especially careful during this decision as they have no previous experience and nothing to compare to. So, let’s take a look at the off-campus housing in general and discuss its benefits and downsides.
The list of off-campus housing is a subjective matter as various students have different demands and priorities. This is a list of the generally-accepted pros and cons that are not limited by the following positions.
There are many benefits of living off campus. Most features are very desirable for an average student, either a local or a foreign one. One of the biggest benefits its freedom to choose what to do in an apartment yourself. You get freedom to have friends come, to come and go whenever you like, etc.
Another benefit is having your own space, even if you have a roommate. Dormitories are often crowded with other students and they are constantly buzzing around. People migrate from one room to another easily and often. Thus, your roommate may have guests whenever they like and your opinion isn’t the main factor. Besides, living on-campus is filled with constant noises. People are buzzing around, chatting, laughing, and even snoring around. You hardly get any time to be in peace and enjoy the silence. Most houses for rent offer you solitude and peacefulness. Besides, studies are also easier in quiet environment. Though you don’t have an opportunity to ask seniors for help at any time.
Starting your rent history while studying gives you more options for when you graduate into adult life. You already have experience and a record of rentals that make you a preferable candidate. Besides, you start living in the “real world” right away and learn what it is like to be an adult.
And the most important factor for some people is no need to share anything, especially bathrooms. A common kitchen and living spaces are manageable to some degree. However, the question of hygiene and shared bathrooms are often too much for students. This is one of the main factors that drives people away from dormitories and pushes them toward apartment finder sites. Of course, there are various options concerning the number of people having to share common places, but it is always more than in a rented apartment.
There are also some disadvantages of off-campus living. Though they may be few, some of them are crucial and can (distress) all the advantages easily.
One of such alarmingly important cons is the long distance from campus. You never know what location the search will lead you to. So, an apartment that suits your needs and meets the budget may turn out to be very far away from campus. As a result, the way there and back can take too much time to feel comfortable and be quite costly. That leads to another disadvantage that often ruins the hopes of students.
Money may be a problem. Often, living off-campus is more expensive than the dormitory accommodation. Students have to pay so many bills. Firstly, there is rent itself; sometimes accompanied by a security deposit. Secondly, there is a need for furniture sometimes. Thirdly, a variety of bills comes each month including the Internet, utilities, cable TV, and so on. Also, students spend money on transportation. According to statistics, people living off-campus also spend more on groceries and, thus, spend more time on cooking.
There is also a need to look for a roommate yourself and be fully responsible for the one you choose. Finding a common ground with a person may be difficult as well. The number of roommates to look for depends on the size of the chosen apartment. So, if you do not want a crowded flat, try to avoid those 3 bedroom apartments.
So, knowing all these advantages and disadvantages, a student should be able to make the right decision. There are a few additional tips an apartment guide that may help in choosing the best place to live.
Do research on the city areas. Find out the coziest neighborhoods to live in. Also, pay attention to the locations that are closer to the campus to save money and time on transportation. Are there good grocery shops nearby? Is this a safe neighborhood? Do the locals seem friendly? What about public transport? All these questions are essential when it comes to choosing an apartment.
Do not hurry to rent a place. Start your search beforehand and go through many options to understand the average prices and what you can expect on your budget. Initially, take a look at the 1 bedroom apartments in case they are cheap enough to rent them on your own. If you do not have such money, something a bit bigger for two or three people will do.
When searching for a place to stay, you may ask for help at your university. They may offer you a few tips and places with ads. Look through a couple of housing sites to see all your options.