Are you a college student who can't decide whether to live on or off-campus? This is a decision that practically every college student considers when they initially decide to attend college and continues for second and third-year students. While living in a dorm has advantages such as being immersed in campus culture and living with other new students, apartment living ultimately wins out.

Apartment living can offer a different change of pace and amenities that aren’t available in most dorms on campus. While living further away from campus can be an adjustment for some students, learning to live on your own can help prepare students for life in the real world.

Here are some benefits to consider when deciding whether to live in an apartment or a dorm as a college student:

1. Lower Cost

On-campus housing is often more expensive than living in an apartment off-campus. Though this is not always the case, some dorms are priced higher than normal because the University knows that they can require first-year students to live on campus. This requirement is done to allow for the student to get immersed in the campus culture. It is also an added bonus for the college to maximize their profits from students who do not want to worry about finding a place off-campus and who want an easy transition. If you do have the opportunity to research off-campus living, depending on the school you attend and the housing market, you can actually find places with better benefits at lower prices.

Dorms usually include all the costs associated with on-campus living such as food plans, utilities, and laundry services that an apartment isn't likely to include.

2. Alone Time/Privacy

Coming to college for the first time comes with the added freedom and independence that you might not be accustomed to after living at home. In most dorms, students have to share a room or a bathroom with one or more students, leaving you with little privacy. Privacy is one of the many benefits that come with living off-campus because you can have your own room separate from roommates. If you want to live by yourself, you also have the option to choose a one-bedroom apartment that is usually not offered in most dorms. Having a private space to decompress or deal with personal troubles is so important when adjusting to new college life.

3. More Cooking Space

Having a fully equipped kitchen is one of the many benefits you can experience if you choose to live off-campus. Coming from home-cooked meals every day to budgeted college meals can be a huge adjustment as a student. On-campus food and cafeterias are not always open and students do not always have the advantage of buying their own groceries to cook a meal without a fridge or oven. A dorm can only offer you so little in the cooking department because most cooking appliances have the potential to cause fire hazards such as a hot plate or toaster.

An apartment can offer you a wide range of appliances such as an oven, stove, and grill to help you cook anything you want that doesn’t come from a microwave.

4. More Amenities

Off-campus housing can come with more than just a bigger kitchen and a private bedroom. Most apartments offer outside or recreational amenities that you cannot experience with on-campus living. Many on-site amenities such as pools, patios, fitness centers, study rooms, and even game rooms are included in a certain apartment’s overall package to offer students an extra perk. Some apartments even include restaurants or snack stores on the lower level to provide students with easy access to food. Compared to a dorm that can only offer proximity to on-campus life, an apartment can offer you additional activities to help you build a community as well.

5. Fewer restrictions

Dorms can often come with added door security and a resident advisor or RA. Because of this, students do not have as much freedom as they normally would have if they lived in an apartment. Residential advisors can have control over music levels, quiet hours, and even visitors coming in or out in some dorm buildings. In an apartment, you will find very few rules and restrictions to stop you from doing anything you want to do. Most apartments can also come with security systems if you are worried about safety being further away from campus.

How We Can Help

Here at Liberty Properties, we are committed to providing well-maintained off-campus properties to make any college town feel like home. We are a boutique property management company based in Auburn, Alabama that specializes in student and family living, office and retail rentals, and leasing. We are more than just a management company and are dedicated to offering superior service and affordable prices for students to find the best option for renting in Auburn. Contact us today to find a place that feels like home during your college transition.

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