One of the decisions students have to make toward the end of each academic year is where they’re going to live the following year. Because I was abroad last semester, I had to make the decision during the fall as to where I was going to live this Spring.
Unlike the previous three years, I made the decision to move off campus and in neighboring Allston, which is down the street from BU’s West Campus. As mentioned in the title, moving off campus while in school is a bit of a step into the adult world.
One of the first things you have to do is pay bills. The basic bills include rent and utilities (electricity, heat, and water). Sometimes apartments will include utilities in the rent price. An additional bill that many people will pay is to a cable company for some basic cable channels as well Internet. One thing to also keep in mind is that it’s important to pay these bills on time so that you do not hurt your credit score.
Another basic part of living off campus is you probably won’t have a dining plan (fun fact: once you live off campus or in BU apartment style housing you’re not required to have a dining plan). However, that does mean if you don’t have much cooking experience, you’ll have to start learning. Thus far, my forays into the culinary world have produced half decent omelettes, overcooked steaks, and plenty of evenings in a smoky kitchen.
The area where living off campus really pushes you into adult world is when things go wrong. While living off campus, if something goes wrong, you can just call your RA, they’ll call the facilities department who will take care of the issues. However, while off campus if something goes wrong like the leak I had a few weeks ago, you have to get the landlord involved, as well as repair people. The biggest thing there is working in repair people with your class and work schedules, which for us COM students can be very full at times.
All in all, much like college in general, moving off campus is a step towards more independence as we move closer to adulthood. However, with that step come several more responsibilities, which people should keep in mind if they choose to explore the option.