We are getting to that time of year when you should begin thinking about where you want to live next year. This is a big transition time, whether you are moving out of the dorms to your first place on your own, or if you’re looking for a change of venue. It is intimidating and by no means simple. On the other hand it seems scarier than it truly is, you just have to start. When I began house hunting for the first time last year I had no idea where to begin. I wish I had known about the resources Oregon State offers, and I want to make it easy for you to find those resources. Here is the link directly to the off-campus resources page. http://oregonstate.edu/uhds/off-campus. This would be a great starting point.
If the Oregon State resource page does not do it for you, the next step is to try Craigslist. You will find people looking to rent out homes or find companies that rent out a number of locations. I will say, you will be making many phone calls. Most of the places listed will have the cost, location, number of bedrooms, and any extra amenities it is important for potential renters to know about, but you may find some that interest you that you need more information on. It is quick and easy to make that phone call and get the information you need. Eventually you may make trips to visit these places, often set up through the company or individual who listed the place. I will say I visited at least five or six places before I found the house I am currently living in. Another idea is to walk or drive around the areas you are looking to live in and look for names on the apartment or condo buildings. You can go online and find out more about each place that interests you. The internet will most likely be your best friend through this whole experience.
Take your time searching for the right place for you because for those of you who are first timers it’s a big jump from the dorms. If this is not your first time, my advice remains the same. I know I wouldn’t want to settle for a place I am not completely happy with. So it is a good idea to give yourself plenty of time so you are not rushing at the end to find a place. Consider the people you will be living with because now you are all paying bills and have shared space and responsibilities. You learn a lot about someone while living with them and in all honesty there is a chance that it’s not the best pairing but you can take it as a learning experience. On the other hand you may find the perfect place and people that you can keep living with for years. I just think it is important to know there are two ways it could go and to be mindful. This is the big leagues now, complete adult responsibility but it’s also a great growing opportunity. It is scary at times and stressful but it is a continuous learning experience. We are college students which means we are here to learn right? This is just one more thing college can teach you!