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Finding Your Perfect First College Apartment

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Whether you’re a freshman not required to live in student housing, a sophomore looking for your first apartment after dorm-living, or a student just now moving out of your parent’s house, finding the perfect first college apartment is important. Amenities, roommates, and budgets all come into play in this exciting, yet terrifying part of growing up. Luckily, Apartments.com has some tips and tricks to help you find an ideal apartment for this stage of your life.

Most importantly, plan and set out a budget for your apartment and stick to it. Be sure to include utilities in that budget since some apartments use a “rent plus utilities” method.

Make a list of what you need, want, and don’t really need. Yeah, a lazy river and a neighborhood pool sounds awesome… but is it really worth paying bank-breaking rent? Figure out what’s important to you, what’s worth paying a little extra for, and what’s not.

Does your apartment need to be pet-friendly? If you’re going into your first college apartment with a pet, then your apartment obviously needs to have a pet-friendly policy. Even if you don’t have a pet now, but are thinking about adopting one later, check this first before you sign a lease.

Pick a reasonable roommate(s). You want your roommate(s) to pay rent on time, respect your privacy, and create a livable environment. Bad roommates can make for an all-around poor living situation. Do yourself a favor, and pick your roommates wisely to have the best first college apartment experience.

Decide on apartment size. A three- or four-bedroom can sometimes be cheaper, but having three other roommates to deal with can be hectic at times, depending on the roommates, of course. Figure out what works best for you living- and money- wise.  

Determine your ideal distance from campus. If you want to walk or bike to class, you’re going to need something closer to campus. If distance doesn’t matter as much to you, perhaps find an apartment with a nearby bus station, or even one with its own buses that routinely take residential students to and from campus. Again, decide what amenities are important to you, and which are not.  

Remember these tips, and use them when the time comes to find your perfect first college apartment. Apartments.com is ready and waiting to help with all of your apartment searching needs!

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