As rental prices continue to go up, students on strict budgets may start feeling dismayed. How can you find a good place to rent and focus on school while still keeping your costs low? Here are some tips for finding affordable student housing as you make your college plans for your upcoming semester.
1. Rent a private room
Instead of starting your search with student apartments, start looking for a single room for rent. Many people list a single room in their home for rent in order to bring in more cash flow, and these places often include utility costs and internet. The cost of a single room is often lower than renting an apartment, even if you are sharing the student apartment with somebody else.
2. Check out "roommate wanted" advertisements
Next, check local classified ads online for roommate advertisements. You might find someone willing to split the cost of a student room rental, effectively lowering your own rental cost. Even though utilities go up with extra people in the house, those costs don't usually double, so you save money there as well.
3. Sign a year-long contract
Many student rental companies offer deals if you sign up for a year of living space, and not just two semesters. If you plan to stay on campus year-round doing summer classes or working a job close to campus, you can benefit from the discounted yearly rate.
4. Be willing to forgo some amenities
Like all real estate markets, you can find a wide variety of student apartments. Some are fancier and offer plenty of extra features for tenants, such as community pools, clubhouses, and onsite gyms. Other apartments have prime real estate with locations very close to campus.
To save money, try looking into older apartment complexes that are further away from campus. Older apartments can still be well cared for and a nice place to live, but you won't be paying the premium for all the extras. Even though a longer walk to school can be less convenient, it's an easy way to save money if you're on a tight budget. To offset the inconvenience, you can make a habit of studying on campus at the library and even using campus gyms for free workouts.
5. Find a house to rent
Finally, if you have a group of friends you want to live with, try looking for a house to rent in your area. The cost to rent a house is higher, but when divided between 4 or 5 people, you may find that it's less costly than renting rooms separately.
Check out local student housing options to learn more.