A Freshman’s Guide to Off-Campus Housing

Off-campus housing is a wonderful option for students who have to live away from home when they pursue a degree. Being off campus offers them a little bit more freedom when compared to living in a dorm on campus. There are a couple of downsides to living outside of the campus, but many would agree that it is an amazing option. Finding a good place outside the campus can be daunting for freshmen, but it does not have to be. Below are a few tips and tricks that can guide freshmen to finding the right place to live in.

Read The Lease Carefully: The saying “Always read the fine print” is especially true for lease contracts. Too many students rely too much on goodwill or faith that they sometimes end up falling victim to a provision in their contract that they never even knew about. Not reading the lease properly can make you bite off more than you can chew. It may take a while, but reading the lease is always a wise and prudent thing to do. If you are not sure what the contents of the lease are, then ask a friend or better yet, a lawyer for some advice on the ambiguity.

Use Virtual Tools: The internet is what most students use nowadays to find things. It is a lot more convenient and simple for students to find the right place for an off campus living space. Leveraging the internet’s infrastructure is not that hard when you know what to look for. Most of you would just use Google to find the answer that you need. Google is a great tool for finding answers, but you should not limit yourself to the search engine only. There are plenty of virtual assets out there that you can use to find the right place. Using websites is a great way to make life easier when you are looking for the right place to stay.

Websites are localized and specialized to cater towards a certain demographic. They are armed with a lot of information and resources that you can use, like this off campus housing website geared towards people looking for a place in Indiana. Look for something similar in your area.

Get A Responsible Roommate Who Pays: Most freshmen think that college life is great because it means that they get to live with a best friend in their own place. Sharing a room with a friend is appealing, but what is most important is living with someone who will pay their share of the bills on time.

There is nothing worse than having a roommate who does not pay their fair share on time, or worse, does not pay at all. Whether its utility, rent, or whatever else, finding someone who pays rent on time is important. Avoiding fights over bills is key to keeping your place a calm and stress-free environment.

Check If The Neighborhood Is Safe: Before you start your life as a freshman living in your own place, always make sure that your neighborhood is a safe place to live in. This is a basic rule that no student living on a leased property should take for granted. Again, the internet has a lot of websites that can help a student determine if they are living in a safe neighborhood.

Be Safe at Night: Night life can get crazy, especially if we are talking about college. you know how things can turn out to be. And students do not always remember that walking along at night is really dangerous. You do not want to walk alone at night when you are sober, now think about it again, as if you were intoxicated. There are many things to do in order to make sure you are safe. SAFEwalk can be your best pal – they will walk you home. You might also want to install Lyft or Uber. If you really need to walk home at night, make sure you are not alone. Ask someone to walk with you, so you would not be alone.

Be Professional: When it comes to apartment showings, there are some decisions to be made, and they are not easy. When going to an apartment showing, or, even better, a house show, you need to be professional. Do not just throw some clothes on your, think about your image for a bit. You need to show confidence and you need to show them that you know what you want and what you are talking about – even if, for most of the time, you do not. Make sure you also do your homework: see how renting a house takes places and think of questions to ask the landlord. Always be prepared with questions. If you as much as seem educated and that you know what you are talking about, the landlord will start to trust you and will soon start to see you as a responsible tenant.

When is it The Perfect Time to Search: The best time for this is late September to December. You will find better options if you start looking in September. By October, you should already know who you are going to live with, so it should be easier for you to find a place to live. Of course, it is not a written rule, you can still search after December, but keep in mind that when you decide to wait that much, all of the best options will be given to others who decided to look earlier. Also, if you choose to wait that much, your friend will probably have found someone else to live with – and that’s not fun.

You should also keep in mind that you are looking for an actual unit, and not a model one. It’s crucial, as a model unit may be arranged in the exact same way as an actual unit, but it may lack some important appliances or, even worse, furniture. And trust us, you want those important appliances and the furniture.

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