It’s that time of year again! The time where the city floods with new students moving into residence and old students getting kicked out of their summer leases. It’s one of the most stressful times of the year for students, especially if they’re going into an upper year. Most upper year students are going to be kicked out of the student residences, which are reserved for first year students. This means that it’s the beginning of the student rental housing hunt.
It’s not only tough for students to find a new place to live, but sometimes even after finding the perfect place, it’s hard for them to convince owners to rent to them because they’re students. They’ve got to look at a ton of factors including location, distance, space and obviously, rent. If they’re lucky enough to land the perfect place, there’s still the factor of competition between others and convincing the owner.
We’ve drafted up the ultimate guide, sort of a cheat sheet, with the best tips and advice for students looking for residential rental housing.
- Location. We believe that location should be one of the most important factors in deciding where you want to live. When you’re doing research on student housing, pick a couple of specific locations. This will help you narrow your search, and you won’t be forced to drive a half hour from one viewing to another (unless you picked out those spots). Choose whether you want to be closer to campus, or perhaps downtown somewhere. If you’ve got a car, location might be a smaller factor than say, price. However, for those of you who need to walk or take public transit, keep in mind where the bus routes are and where the closest grocery, laundry and convenience stores are. Base your location on what is most convenient for you and the places you will visit the most.
- Rent. We really wanted to put this at the top of the list, but price is usually dependent on location. Pick a price point that suits your needs and is realistic. If you’re stuck on a particular location, research the price point and compare it to areas that might be a couple of minutes farther or closer to campus. Typically, the closer to campus you look, the more expensive the rent. It might also help to figure out your other costs in order to determine how much more you can spend on rent. For example, if you plan on walking instead of taking public transit every day, you can add on the cost of bus fares to your rent, making your rent a little higher in price. That way, it may be more convenient for you to live closer and walk every day.
- Living Standard. A great way to determine what sort of student housing you want is to picture your ideal experience in school. A huge factor of your student experience is based on your living conditions. Are you a homebody and like to invite people over instead of going out? Or are you busy social butterfly who rarely stays home? These factors can help you determine the amount of time you’ll really be a home and how much time you’ll spend out of the house. By picturing your ideal student experience, you can determine how much you want to pay on rent and the location of where you want to live.
It’s not an easy feat trying to land the perfect apartment or house as a student. There’s lots of looking, researching and luck involved. Hopefully these tips will help you find your perfect home for the next semester. Good luck!