College Roommates Part II – Life After Dorms
Most incoming college freshmen live in the dorms their first year. In my opinion this is a wise decision and an excellent opportunity to experience new things. However, not all freshmen live in the dorms. Some move straight into apartments, condos, or houses. In College Roommates Part II, I will discuss my experiences living with roommates in an apartment. Not all are good, but overall apartment life in 100 times better than being in a dorm.
I moved into my first apartment in August of my sophomore year. I decided to find a place with a friend (we'll call him Mike) I have known for years. We asked several of our other high school friends to live with us, but no one was available. We drastically searched for two more roommates. We wanted to live in a four bedroom apartment because of the social atmosphere, but mostly because it is cheaper than living in a two bedroom. We eventually found two guys to live with us. They happened to live in the dorms with Mike, so they were friends of his but total strangers to me. I was not worried one bit. After living with Kraut in the dorms, nothing could be worse, after all, in the apartment I would have my own room and own bathroom.
Apartments are so much nicer than dorms. You get your privacy back (well most of it), you get more space, and you get a better sense of independence. I had my own desk and my own computer. I had my own mini fridge in my bedroom and my own dresser. The only things we had to share were things in the living room. We chose to stay in one of the more social apartment complexes known for parties and fun times. We had an already furnished apartment that included all utilities and cable TV with the rent. We had our own washer and dryer too.
Living in my first apartment was one of the best years of my life. My new roommates turned out to be awesome people. We have all remained friends to this day. Having four guys in one apartment comes with its positives and its negatives. Some of the positives are always having people to play sports with (I can't count the number of times we played 2v2 basketball), always having someone to play video games with, having friends to go out with, and just being able to have fun with friends. But when you live with three other guys' things can get messy. Trash piles up everyday, no one cleans the kitchen, and someone always wants to party the night you have an exam to study for.
Overall my first (and only) apartment experience was a good one. I made two solid friends there, although I did not meet many other people in the apartment complex. We had good times, especially when we bought a ping pong table for the living room, and great memories. I would highly recommend everyone to live in an apartment at least one year during their college career that is unless you have a sweet condo or house.
My junior and senior year of college, my friend Mike and I decided to move into a condo with two of our friends from back home. Our roommates from the apartment were cool with it, and they both went to live with two other their friends from back home. We chose to move into the condo because A. it was cheaper and B. we needed a new scene. By moving in with a friend whose parents owned the condo, we did not have to pay a security deposit or any hidden fees. Our rent was straight forward and included all utilities. We had everything from the apartment and more.
The only downfall from living in the condo was that it was old. Things got moldy and things fell a part. Not all of it was normal wear and tear. During my stay at the condo, I survived 4 hurricanes, one of which was a direct hit. Florida got pounded in August of my senior year. Those hurricanes ripped the condo complex up, and the condo association did nothing to fix it. Trees were everywhere, roofing and siding came off, and mold and leakage grew in our rooms. Luckily we were able to control it.
We also had a dog while living in the condo. One of my roommates brought her home because she was abandoned. She was a sweet dog in the end, but a pain while a puppy. She chewed everything and peed on everything she did chew.
If I had to pick living in an apartment or living in a condo, I would choose the condo probably 8/10 times. They both have their pros and they both have their cons. I met some of my best friends living in both the apartment and condo. I did meet my girlfriend through one of my condo roommates and Mike met his girlfriend because she lived in the condo next to us. You can't go wrong either way. Anything is better than living in a dorm. I never lived in a house so I can not touch on that subject as much. In the next section I will discuss the pros and cons of apartments and condos.
Apartment Pros and Cons:
Pro- Social environment
Pro- Maintenance is prompt (usually)
Pro- Fixed bills (utilities, TV, and phone included)
Pro- Already furnished
Pro- More space and privacy
Con- No where to study
Con- Have to drive / take a bus to school
Con- Roommates steal your food
Con- No one cleans up
Con- Can be expensive
Condo / house Pros and Cons:
Pro- Have your won furniture
Pro- Utilities included in rent
Pro- Can have pets
Pro- Good parking
Pro- Social aspects
Pro- Usually cheaper
Con- You have to provide maintenance
Con- No where to study
Con- It can get loud living with 3 other people
Con- Roommates steal your food
If you have any questions regarding college living (whether it be dorms or apartments), please feel free to email me at [email protected]