Now that you have decided to live on your own, you couldn’t be happier. You’ve landed a great spot off campus, and now it’s time to make a move. You’ll need to do some things before moving day: packing up all of your belongings, making sure everything is in order with your landlord, etc. But there are also some secrets that only those who have been through this experience know about. Here are five secret tips for hassle-free living off-campus.
1. Make a Floorplan
Have you forgotten how small your place is in the excitement of moving in? Probably not. If you’ve been planning to live on your own for a while, then you know that any apartment or house will likely feel cramped when it’s just one person living there. But once all of your boxes are packed, don’t be surprised if you find out that things aren’t so cozy after all. This means that organization and decorating skills are important before becoming settled officially. You can get a short queen RV mattress that will help you sleep better.
It’s even better if the ones who do the heavy lifting (friends or family) also happen to be skilled at design and organizing the space they’re working with. Have them help you map out where exactly everything should go beforehand by making a floor plan.
2. Keep Your Bills in Order
The landlord probably explained that utilities are generally included in the monthly rent, but that isn’t always the case. Sometimes there’s “utility money” that you’ll be expected to pay upfront just for turning on electricity and gas once every month or so, so make sure to ask about this before moving in. Internet service is almost always an additional fee if it’s not included.
However, even if everything is included with your monthly rent, you should still know how much of each bill goes where–the person(s) moving out above should have no problem telling you where they set up their accounts and what their login information was, right? Ideally, you should set everything up through your landlord, but if you want to make sure everything is in order before the time comes, you should start this process early.
3. Know When and How Often to Clean
This might seem like a no-brainer: once every month or so is good for most places. But what about random messes? It’s easy to get lazy when there’s not someone else around who will be bothered by it, especially if this place belongs to you. If your off-campus living spot is smaller than usual (e.g., studio apartment), then expect that the quality of cleanliness will degrade faster than usual since there won’t be enough room to store things after they’re taken out but pre-cleaned. So, if you’re the type to avoid cleaning altogether, try setting a schedule and make sure that everything is done before your friends or family come over.
4. Get To Know the Neighbors
Breaking the ice with people who live close by is not easy, but it’s a good idea to do so. You never know when you’ll need help with something (e.g., packages delivered while you’re at class, a car towed from the street because you parked in the wrong spot, etc.).
Plus, if they happen to be throwing a party and you’re not into that scene, you now have a solid excuse to avoid it. Pullman student apartments, for instance, are ideal for you if you get along with the apartment community without compromising on your privacy.
5. Have a Backup Plan
Murphy’s Law is always in effect, especially when you’re living off-campus. What do you do when your heating system breaks down in the middle of winter? Or what if there’s a gas leak and the whole building has to be evacuated? Make sure that you have some backup plan, preferably one that doesn’t involve sleeping on your friends’ couches for an indefinite amount of time. This could mean having enough money saved up to cover at least a month’s rent or even just knowing which friends live close by.
Moving off-campus can be a great way to save money and have a bit more privacy. But it might not be easy, especially if this is your first time doing it. By following these five tips, you’ll be on your way to a successful move and a cozy new home.