Your are in the college now...
Living with roommates in college dorms doesn't work out as often as it fails... 'Tis sad but true. More people report unhappy relationships with their roommates than they do the opposite! Even a search for "college roommates" via the internet will reveal zillions of sites with titles along the lines of "[how to] annoy your college roommate" but only a rare few will offer such touching words as those posted on "to my college roommate." Part of the problem is that it's human nature for us to pick out a person's negative aspects much quicker & with greater ease than it is for us to realize their positive ones. This is especially true when it comes to living with people in a situation that compromises both of your privacy levels. You're bound to see the person/people with which you live at their best and you're also bound to seem them at their worst. We often tend to remember those "worse" moments and talk about them more than we do the others. After all, "normality" can be boring.. It's sensationalism that sells. You're more likely to tell war stories about the time someone spilled their breakfast all over you than you are about the pleasant conversation you had over cereal. Just remember, you're likely to be around them while they're in a pleasant mood and you're likely to be around them while they're pissed off at the world. If you work hard to view those with whom you live as people and remember that they're GOING to have some faults (and so are you!), you'll find the whole experience that much easier!
College roommates - Living in on campus apartments
Before getting an on campus apartment you may need to consider that despite any potential luxuries, living arrangements may be even more tricky than those common in simple dormitory situations. For one thing, your on campus apartment is going to have more than one student living there and multiple roommates CAN cause multiple headaches if you're not a "roomie"-type of person. In such a case, you should probably consider looking for an off campus apartment with only one person sharing the rent instead. But if you already have experienced living with one or more other people and have enjoyed it, then on campus apartments offer a great, reasonably-priced [well...usually reasonably-priced] alternative to their off-campus counterparts! Just remember: apartments have a lot more space and several more rooms than dorms. On the bright side, this enables you more frequently to separate yourself from your roommates but on the downside, it usually adds kitchens and living rooms which can become your idea of very messy or dirty thanks to those who share the space with you. As always, the best advice we can really offer is: before jumping into anything, consider all of your options. Let us know if you have any questions!
Roommates & Off Campus Apartments
At many colleges, dormitories & apartments can be so noticeably grungy that resident students refer to them as "the projects." Consequently, even some of the least attractive off-campus apartments can seem like plush penthouses when compared with their on campus counterparts. As a result, real estate owners tend to purchase as many properties as they can near college campuses for the sole purpose of renting them out to students. We've all heard some municipalities referred to as "college towns" and part of what truly makes a surrounding community into a bonafide "college town" is its vast number of tenant-filled dwellings which house local students.
So how do students find an apartment that's "right" for them? Calculate your budget first. Before going apartment shopping, make sure you know exactly how much you can spend. Don't waste your own valuable time being shown around apartments that you know you can't afford. Use the newspaper classifieds, use apartment guides, use the internet, & spend one full day making a list... and even a folder of "candidates" that you feel are within your price range and needs. Be realistic about how close the apartment you want is to your school, consider the potential costs of utilities, and be careful to consider how long you could go on affording it with or without a partner!