What’s the most exciting thing about going to college? Yes; it’s about learning, friendships, and parties. But most of all, it’s about independence. If this is your first time living away from your family, it will be an entirely new experience. Your responsibility will be put to the test.
So let’s talk about living on campus, shall we? It’s not always the most attractive option you have. Sure; it’s usually more affordable than an apartment, but it doesn’t always give you the level of independence you’re looking for. There are too many people, too many roommates, and too much noise all the time.
If you want to be truly independent, you’re probably considering living off-campus. That’s a great decision, but it’s also a bit challenging. You’ll face daily struggles related to finances, commuting, and adulting.
You’ll Have to Learn How to Manage Your Finances
When you’re off campus, your expenses are not put together in a single big payment. The fixed expense is limited to the rent. You have control over everything else. You can control the electricity you spend, the money you spend on groceries, the internet service provider, and everything else.
You have to know where your money is going all the time. A budget management app on your phone will help a lot! It will keep track of the expenses, letting you know exactly how much money you have at your disposal.
Remember to Manage Your Time
When you’re in your comfy bed and you think about a 30-minute commute in -15 degree weather, the idea of skipping class will come naturally. Resist that temptation! You have a schedule and you have to keep on track with it. Otherwise, you’ll start procrastinating and you’ll eventually delay your own graduation.
Sarah Cooper, a contributor of A-Writer, explains that time management is the biggest issue for students living independently: “When you’re in full control over the way you live, you’ll naturally strive for comfort. That leads to skipping classes, delaying the work on an important project, and wasting time in every other way possible. These students have to learn how to use their calendar. I’m serious!”
Your Roommate is the Closest Friend You’ve Got
Having a roommate is great! Not only because you’ll split the expenses, but also because you’ll always have a friend to count on. However, when two young people are in a room together, you can’t expect rainbows, unicorns, and happiness all the time. There will be dirty clothes on the floor, there will be noise when you want to rest, and other struggles you’ll have to learn how to deal with.
Honesty is the best way to ensure a successful friendship. When you’re bothered with something your roommate does, tell them in the nicest way possible. “Could you pick up the clothes from the floor? I can help if you need me to!” That’s a nice way to resolve a conflict, don’t you think?
You’ll Need to Learn How to Cook; It’s Fun!
When you live in an apartment, you’re responsible for your own food. You can eat whatever you want, as long as you learn how to cook. Start watching YouTube videos of chefs preparing easy meals and be sure to practice; you’ll get into cooking in no time.
Why is it important to learn how to cook? – Because grocery shopping is way more affordable than eating out. Plus, the food you cook yourself will be healthier.
How about Getting Your Own Wheels?
Commuting is the main struggle for students who choose to live away from campus. To say that public transport is not enjoyable is an understatement.
- How about getting an old car? It will not only get you wherever you want to go, but it will also be the place where you keep all your books, snacks, and backup clothes while you attend classes.
- If the car’s maintenance is too expensive for you, how about a scooter?
- If your place is not too far from campus and the road is safe for bikes, that’s a huge bonus. A bike is the most affordable option you have and it helps keep you fit.
Yes, there will be challenges, but don’t let them discourage you. You’ll have a great experience living off-campus; you just have to learn how to manage your time and finances, find an easy way to commute to campus, learn how to cook, and become friends with your roommate. You can do that, right?
Audrey Pilcher is a passionate blogger and freelance writer at college-paper.org. Being engaged in numerous international internships during studies, she gained invaluable experience. Since then Audrey was willing to share it with others. Therefore she became an article writer on studying, self-growth issues.