Tag Archives: Dorm

Dorm vs. Apartment – Which Is Better?

Filed under: College Life, Living, Tips - Angelina
Tags: , , ,

Serena Piper BookRenter Blogger Biography





The beginning of any school year comes with a plethora of decisions to make that can shape your entire year. Most of these decisions are fun because there is a certain reassurance knowing we can always change our minds later. Some may be a little harder to make if it’s a decision you’ll be stuck with for a while, such as choosing whether to stay in an apartment or a college dorm. No matter which one you choose, you’ll have to be fairly confident in your decision because you might, depending on your college, be stuck with it for at least a semester. Chances are you have already moved in to where you will be for the school year. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t still think about your decision (and maybe change it if possible), or prepare yourself for a change next semester/year.

Living in a college dorm is different from living in an apartment, but which is better?

1. Expenses

The first thing you should consider when choosing where to live, is what kind of budget you’re on. Financially speaking, dorms can be a lot pricier than living in an apartment or house off campus because meal plans and utilities (sharing a bathroom, etc.) are included (and required) in the individual price. Dorm fees are usually cheaper with the more roommates you have, but this can vary upon which dorm you are in and can even still be too costly. Having roommates in an apartment can help reduce rent too, but usually this is still a cheaper option overall since you can all share costs of utilities, groceries, etc. However, the biggest difference in cost with an apartment and a dorm is usually when payments have to be made. Typically, living in a dorm requires payment in full upfront, while an apartment generally expects smaller payments each month throughout your stay. In order to make a payment for a dorm, you will likely either need to have saved up, have earned a grant/scholarship, or will need to pay the costs with a student loan. To pay for an apartment, you should have a part-time job to allow you to make these monthly payments.

2. Freedom

Living in an apartment does generally allow more freedom. You can decide what you eat each day (and not have to stick to what the dining hall offers) and what time (dining halls are not usually open 24 hours), you can have anyone over (some dorms are gender restricted), and typically apartments have less regulations than dorms (no quiet hours, different policies on what items are allowed, etc). However, with more freedom comes more responsibility.

3. Personal Life

Aside from the fact that I just couldn’t afford to live in a dorm, the main reason I chose to live off campus was to separate my school life from my personal life. I liked being able to leave school grounds at the end of my classes. The separation of my personal life from school life meant I could go home at the end of the day and not feel like I had to socialize if I didn’t want to. It’s a different experience to live on-campus and be in the middle of the college buzz 24/7, but some people prefer to have that experience.

4. Roommates

Most college students cannot afford to live alone. In dorms, roommates are generally assigned to you without ever having any idea of who they are, what they’re like, or if you’ll get along. Some schools allow you to make roommate requests, but freshmen especially are usually paired up since they may not already have friends at the school. Apartment life requires you to find your own roommates, which allows you the opportunity to find someone with your similar living habits and interests.

If you’re still having trouble deciding, make a pros and cons list for each option, or seek the opinions of friends and family. The more input you receive from those who have been there, the more assured you’ll feel about your final choice. Some college students even feel like they want to experience both the dorm-life and apartment-life and decide to live in the dorms for the first couple of years of college, and then get an apartment off-campus with some close friends. When you realize what experience and lifestyle you want, you will easily be able to decide what is best for you.

Do you live in a dorm or an apartment? What do you like best about it? Share your experience with us in a comment!

Add a Comment

Springtime DIY Room Decor

Filed under: College Life, DIY & Crafts, Tips - Angelina
Tags: , , , , ,

Darlene Megino Blogger Biography





Getting tired of the same old decorations? Fear not! I have three easy DIY room décor ideas that you can easily do that’s great for a student on a budget! These décor ideas will definitely spruce up your room just in time for spring!

1. Flower Jars

Mason jars are VERY in this year. You can use them for making gifts, cups, or even room décor! All you need to decorate your mason jars are some fake flowers and some paint! Pour paint into the jar to cover it about ¼ of the way, and then swirl the jar around so that it completely coats the inside of the jar. Keep swirling the jar and tilting it until it reaches the top. Once you’ve gotten the top coated, begin pouring the paint back out to coat the rim of the jar. Afterwards, let it sit for a few hours to dry and when it’s ready just add your flowers! To make the jar even more decorative, you can add some string to it. Tie it into a bow and maybe glue on a shiny button for added glam.

2. Framed Magazine Collage

This DIY décor idea is very chic and very cheap! All you need is a large frame and some old magazines. Using the paper backing included in most frames, cut out and glue inspirational pictures onto the paper backing. Make sure you lay it out prior to gluing it so that you know exactly how it will look. Use bright colors, inspirational words, and eye catching patterns to really spruce up your room. You can also make this into a dream collage, college collage, or a general collage about you.

3. Candle Holders

Candle holders are the best décor to put in your room. It adds a fresh feel and sleek look to the room. Using a bunch of fake or real flowers (make sure to change it out often if you choose real) take your candle holder and simply tie it around the candleholder. Make sure you secure it and tie it nicely with a bow and that the flowers are not dropping into the holder (which could easily catch a flame). If you use fake flowers, you can also use glue to ensure that it stays onto the candle holder. After you’ve decorated it, add a candle and place it near your bed or desk for that elegant feel! If you live in a dorm, be sure to check your college housing policies about candles.

What are you doing to get ready for spring? Any new decoration ideas? Share them below!

Add a Comment

3 Quick & Easy Dorm-Made Desserts

Filed under: College Life, Food, Tips - Angelina
Tags: , ,

Darlene Megino Blogger Biography





Do you have a sweet tooth? Want to satisfy your sugar cravings but don’t want to make large amounts of desserts? Here are some dessert ideas and recipes that are perfect for a single serving. Whether you’re living in a dorm or an apartment, these desserts are easy to make and your friends will love them too (if you feel like sharing that is). Don’t worry about having an oven, all you need is a microwave to make these delicious desserts – perfect for a typical college student!

1) Cake In a Mug

Recipe: Mix in 4 tablespoons of flour, 4 tablespoons of sugar, 1 tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa, and 3 tablespoons of milk into a mug. Whisk in 2 eggs, 3 tablespoons of oil, and 3 tablespoons of chocolate chips. Feel free to splash in flavoring such as vanilla, cinnamon, or peppermint! Mix it all together and pop it into the microwave for five minutes or less (make sure not to over-cook it).

2) Chocolate Chip Cookie

Recipe: Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a mug or small bowl in the microwave. Add 1 tablespoon of granulated white sugar, 1 tablespoon of firmly packed dark brown sugar, 3 drops of vanilla extract, and a small pinch of salt. Add in 1 egg and 1/4 cup of flour and mix until the dough is formed. Now stir in 2 tablespoons of semi-sweet chocolate chips. Sculpt the dough out of the bowl/mug and into a cookie shape. Place it on a small plate lined with a paper towel or parchment paper. Microwave it for about a minute, then let it cool and firm up before eating.

3) Cocoa Puff Treat

Recipe: Put 1/2 cup of Cocoa Puffs and 2.5 cups marshmallows into a bowl that has been greased. Add in a teaspoon of mini chocolate chips and heat it up in the microwave for 45 seconds. Stir to coat the marshmallow and to shape it. Push it together so it gets all stuck together and enjoy!


Hungry yet?

Add a Comment

Adjusting To Dorm Life

Filed under: College Life, Social Life/Relationships, Tips - Angelina
Tags: , , ,

Cameron Tranchemontagne Blogger Biography





For many people, living in a dorm is a new and sometimes daunting experience. Many people may have never lived in a building with so many people before and may feel socially uncomfortable. Dorm life can either be miserable or the best time of your life; here are some tips to make sure it is the latter.

1. Be Social

Believe it or not, most people are friendly beings and won’t bite if you go up to talk to them. You don’t have to be friends with everyone in your dorm, but being friendly neighbors will at least make your time pleasant and enjoyable. I met some of my best friends in the dorms and you could too!

2. Roommates

You don’t have to be best friends with your roommates. You don’t even have to get along. But the best way to make a living situation work is by being upfront and honest with your them if there is something bothering you. Be respectful of each other’s space and keep good communication.

3. Residential Assistants

If there is one thing you should know about your residential assistant (RA), it is that they are normal students just like you. Be friendly and get to know your RA. Most of them love to meet and know their residents on a more personal level, not to mention it’s their job. Also your RA is more likely to let small dorm infractions slide if they like you. Just don’t do anything reckless that would force your RA to do their job and report you. That would be awkward.

Living in a dorm is one of the best experiences about college. Staying on campus is a crucial part to truly experiencing life as a college student, so make the most of it!R

Add a Comment

Affordable Dorm Decor Shopping

Filed under: College Life, Money/Budget, Tips - Angelina
Tags: , , ,

Serena Piper Blogger Biography





Returning to school is not always easy after a fun-filled summer, but it’s safe to say one of the best things about going back is the excitement that comes with decorating your dorm in a fresh new way. Decorating does not have to take a toll on your wallet. Here are a few affordable places to look for your next wall art or comfy pillow!

1. Target

Who doesn’t love Target? Their Back to College line of affordable decorations will have you piling the shopping cart full of goodies. You even have the option of decorating in your university’s colors!

2. Urban Outfitters

Patterned curtains to block the sun when you have a late class, a comfy rug to form a study circle on, or a soft comforter for your bed. Whatever you need, Urban Outfitters has it at an affordable price.

3. Bed Bath & Beyond

I could spend hours in this store getting lost in their selections of wall decals, bedding, and storage units, which are especially important in small spaces. All of their products are extremely affordable, even the things that you might expect to be expensive, such as air purifiers or tasteful desk lamps.

4. Anthropologie

Their sale section has some great deals on picture frames, pillows, bathroom towels, and kitchenware.

If you have extra time to shop around, be sure to check TJ Maxx or Ross, both known for chic, inexpensive, but durable home goods. Craigslist is always an option too, but be careful. Don’t buy bedding with a questionable history or anything that looks badly stained.

Room to splurge? Check out Pier 1 Imports or World Market for those one-of-a-kind items that will add that extra special touch to your home away from home.

Happy shopping!

Add a Comment