Monday, October 6, 2014

Where am I living next year?

It’s time to start considering your living arrangements for next year. I know it seems like you just got here, how are you possibly expected to choose a place to live in this new town you’re just getting used to? I have a few pointers to hopefully help make this decision a little easier.

First, it’s important to explore all your options here in Bloomsburg. Nothing is worse than rushing into something and later regretting the location you have already signed for. I am assuming most of you have never signed a lease before and it can be scary, but I promise it feels a lot better to sign when you’re 100 percent happy with your new space. The first decision you have to make is deciding whether you want to live on or off campus.

Living On Campus

On-campus living can be broken down into two areas: the dorms and on- campus apartments. Most of you are already living in the dorms and have a grasp for what dorm-living is all about.

In most cases you are able to select your dorm and can choose your roommate(s). This option remains a possibility for every year up until graduation as long as you remain on campus. Keep in mind that once you move off campus, you cannot move back. This also holds true for upper campus apartments.

On upper campus there are three apartment buildings you can sign up for to live in, which are first come, first serve.
  • Montgomery Place Apartments (MPA) are the closest to campus and have 2 bedrooms per apartment, hold 4 students and have 1 bathroom to share. 
  • Mount Olympus Apartments (MOA) are further up the hill and are townhouse styled apartments. They hold 6 students, with each student having their own bedroom and 2 bathrooms to share. 
  • Jessica Kozloff Apartments (JKA) are the furthest uphill, right near the Blue Lot. This apartment complex holds 4 students, with each student having their own bedroom and they also have 2 bathrooms to share. 
Keep in mind that these apartments all have a shuttle that runs regularly between lower and upper campus. Because these apartments are on-campus, there are CA’s and it is still considered ‘dry’, meaning no alcohol is allowed no matter your age. I think these apartments are especially great for those who may be nervous to make the transition from the dorms to downtown right away. Of course they are also great for those who want to experience a different kind of on-campus living!
  • Kile Apartments, located right behind Schuykill dorm on Penn Street are also considered on-campus, but they are slightly different. 
These apartments have 2 CA’s as well as a landlord. It is a little more expensive than upper campus apartments however they are significantly closer to town. These apartments range from 2-6 students, with the larger apartments having two bathrooms and the smaller ones having one bathroom. In this complex everyone gets their own room. You can always contact Res-Life for more information as well as pricing on any of these locations.

Living Off Campus

When I was a sophomore I chose a different route and moved off campus. Off-campus living offers a variety of options as far as where you live, how many roommates you can have and what is all included. These options are generally always more expensive than on-campus living and requires a little more responsibility since your living is no longer affiliated with BU.

I moved into an apartment my sophomore year, which was slightly more expensive than the average off-campus apartment, however it came completely furnished and all utilities were included except electric. You can also elect to sign for an apartment that is cheaper however you may pay that money you save in rent by renting furniture or paying all of your utilities.

My junior year I signed for a furnished house where my utilities were not included and it was definitely a shock compared to barely paying any my sophomore year and no utilities in the dorms as a freshman.

With that in mind it is very important to shop around and stay informed of your decisions. There are a wide variety of landlords who rent to BU students so check them all out, as they all offer different benefits.

Consider your budget and talk with your families and future roommates about what is best for you.

Deciding on a place to live for next year can be seem overwhelming and sudden but it is important to start thinking about this sooner than later. I can’t tell you exactly when certain places with fill up, but I do know the best places obviously go first. I have always signed my leases by the end of October to make sure I could secure the apartment I wanted, but if you need more time to figure things out you can always contact Res-Life or desired landlords to see what their availability looks like.

Good luck on your housing hunt and enjoy the rest of your semester!

— Sierra Kern, Class of 2015 #HuskyLife


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