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How To Find Functional And Budget-Friendly College Accommodation

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One of the most anticipated milestones in a student’s life is going to college. Usually, as soon as you’re a few months away from finishing your senior year, you’ll be working on your applications to various universities you’ve long wanted to attend. Then, you’ll be busy writing college essays and doing interviews until you hopefully get accepted into your college of choice.

But besides choosing your major, budgeting for your tuition fees, and getting ready for college orientation, one thing that every incoming college student must do is sort out their housing. Finding affordable yet functional college accommodation is a common struggle among college freshmen. Considering that you’ll be staying in the place you select for four years, it’s essential that you go for a good housing option suitable for your long-term budget.

So where should you start?

Here are some steps you can take to find college accommodation that’s right for you:

Figure Out Your Budget


Before looking into your options, determine your budget first and how much you’re willing to spend for student housing. A set budget will make it easier for you to narrow down your choices and only focus on those you can afford. You can opt for either on-campus housing offered by your college or private housing that comes with amenities such as a gym and study rooms. However, such options can be quite expensive.

To reduce accommodation costs, you can rent an apartment off-campus either through an agency or a landlord. This option is more cost-effective compared to on-campus housing. Regardless of your choice, having a clear budget can help you stay on track while searching for a place to stay.

Get Started As Early As Possible


Sometimes, the key to finding affordable student accommodation is beginning the search ahead of most people. Housing units like the one at and on similar websites provide discounts to students who sign rental contracts early. Moreover, starting your search sooner allows you to find more decent and functional rooms that are still available and choose the best one for you. Otherwise, you might end up having to select rooms or housing units that are the least liked.

If you’re opting for on-campus college accommodation, make sure to reach out to your university a few months before your reporting date. The more proactive you are about your student housing search, the more likely you’ll find quality accommodation.

Make A Comparison Between Living On And Off Campus


Many students consider on-campus housing as the safest option for students. On-campus living can be excellent for those who wish to spend more time at the library or get an on-campus job. While it may be more costly, on-campus housing fees usually cover electricity, water, and, sometimes, even cable and internet. If you happen to have a car, you can also save money on gas since you won’t need to drive to school.

On the other hand, off-campus and private student housing may require a security deposit for their rooms and furnishing. You may also need to budget for your gas, internet, or energy bills if they’re not included in the set monthly fee. On a brighter note, there are private off-campus housing options that may have reasonable fees already inclusive of electricity and water.

Find A Roommate


Another thing you can do to make your college accommodation more affordable is finding a roommate with whom you can share the housing cost. Regardless if you want an apartment or a whole house, getting one or more roommates to live in the place with you can significantly reduce your expenses. But before you start looking for roommates, analyze the situation first and assess whether you’re ready for room sharing and how many students you can tolerate staying in the same unit.

Once you’ve decided to go for room sharing, make sure to choose a roommate who’s responsible and timely when paying bills and maintaining the upkeep of the place. You don’t want to find yourself breaking the lease because you can’t bear living with your roommates any longer. Breaking lease requirements could cost you a lot. Consider consulting your college’s student welfare department and inquire if they know anyone actively seeking housing or roommates.

Explore Different Housing Options Before You Settle


One of the common mistakes some students make when looking for college accommodation is settling too soon. As much as possible, don’t go for the first option you come upon. Rushing the decision may only result in missing out on options that could’ve been safer, more comfortable, and more affordable than the first one you encountered.

As you go hunting for housing options, it’s ideal to explore as many units as you can in different locations. That’s why it’s best to search early so you can have plenty of time to look around until you find one that best fits your budget and standards. Moreover, try to search for accommodations relatively further from your college campus as apartments in closer proximity tend to cost more.

When talking to landlords and housing managers, don’t forget to take note of the answers to your questions as well as other details that would affect your decision. Later on, you can go back to your notes for each housing option and compare them before you finally choose the most appropriate accommodation for your circumstances.

Find Student Housing Options Online


For students attending colleges a thousand miles away, the best option for you is to look for student housing online. However, be aware that just because this method is more convenient doesn’t mean it’s easier.

Since you won’t need to drive around to find options, take your time determining each website’s authenticity and getting information such as the available leases and the type of neighborhood the housing unit is part of. Once you’ve found the right accommodation, you may personally check it out and see if the photos of the place match the real thing before you sign the agreement.

Explore The Town Surrounding Your College

Suppose you’ve already found adequate, budget-friendly accommodation. Before you sign the leasing agreement, make sure to explore the town where your apartment or dorm and school are in. Doing so will give you an idea of what it feels like to live in that neighborhood and see if it’s safe and convenient for students.

The Bottom Line Searching for affordable yet functional college housing can be challenging given that every student is finding ways to minimize their college expenses. So to secure quality housing without breaking the bank, follow the steps above and put in enough time and effort until you find the best option that matches your needs.

Also Read: The Simple Yet Broad Concept Of ‘Homeschooling’



The Educational landscape is changing dynamically. The new generation of students thus faces the daunting task to choose an institution that would guide them towards a lucrative career.

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