Moving off campus comes as a relief. You finally have freedom, your own space, and living areas you only share with a few people (at most). To make the move as successful as possible, here are a few things you need to do.
1. Decide Who You Want to Live With
Some of your friends could make ideal roommates — whereas others not so much. You want to share with people who have similar lifestyles to you, including similar ideas about how much time to dedicate to studying and how much to socializing or partying. They should also have the same standards of cleanliness as you and be people you can trust. When picking your roommates, have an open conversation about your expectations to ensure that you are compatible.
2. Create a Cleaning Schedule
To avoid conflict with your roommates and to keep your home tidy, you’ll need a cleaning schedule. Decide what is everyone’s responsibility (such as washing the dishes after you’ve used them) and how often you need to do other tasks (like cleaning the bathroom).
3. Calculate Your Budget
You should already have a budget from when you were living on campus, but you’ll want to update it when you move into an apartment. You’ll most likely be saving a large amount of money, but you’ll now need to account for new expenses, such as food, cleaning supplies, and perhaps furniture. If your rent doesn’t include utilities, remember to include these in your budget.
4. Figure Out What You’ll Eat
Talking about food, your meals will now be up to you. Whereas this is cheaper than relying on a meal plan, it does require extra effort. You’ll need to be ready to cook plenty of your own meals to avoid exceeding your budget. This involves deciding what to eat each week and purchasing the necessary groceries. Shop smart by buying healthy, inexpensive ingredients to create simple meals.
5. Assess Potential Apartments
Take a thorough tour of every apartment you’re interested in. Since you’re already living in the area, there’s no excuse to rely on pictures alone. Whenever possible, talk to the current (or past) residents and your future neighbours to find out if they’ve had any issues with appliances, the landlord, or noise. You’ll also need to figure out how you’ll commute from the apartment to campus to determine if this is feasible — especially in time for your morning classes. Finally, assess the safety of the building. It should require a key to enter through the main door and all the windows should lock securely.
6. Take Out Renters Insurance
It’s important to have insurance to cover you in the case of theft, fire, and natural disaster. You can often find decent coverage with low monthly payments — and it’s definitely worthwhile for the protection you’ll receive.
The most challenging thing about moving off campus is finding the ideal student apartment. For all-inclusive uOttawa housing, though, it’s easy: you have THEO. You’ll be close to campus and still around other students, but it will be up to you whether you want to share a room — or even share an apartment at all! Book an onsite visit to check out the apartments and facilities.