A student’s time in college is not just for growing academically, but also for moving from apartment to apartment every year and learning how to live as an adult. For those who are lucky, they have a guaranteed spot in a dorm. For those who aren’t so lucky, it’s all about timing and patience to find the perfect apartment that gives you all the amenities you need at an affordable price. Keep reading for tips on how to find the right University of Florida housing for your specific wants and needs!
There is no such thing as PERFECT.
The sooner this is understood, the better. Ideally, you would like an apartment that is close enough to school that you can walk, bike, or take the bus, with not too many roommates (unless you’ll freak out) and it has to have a pool, study room, and gym! … Sounds like a dream, right?
It may seem like you’ll never find the right apartment for yourself, but after so many tours with persistent leasing agents, you’ll have to make tough choices and learn how to manage your priorities when deciding on a place to live.
Which one do you pick though?
Timing is everything, so always start looking early.
I cannot stress this enough. If you are looking for apartments, you should always start within four-to-six months before you move, sometimes even earlier depending on your desired location. Yes, things happen and maybe that seems too far in advance for some people, but you can save a fortune by getting a head start. If you make an early decision, it will also let you get first dibs on the latest apartments. It can also help you get the apartment building closest to the bus stop which is an amazing plus.
Tip: Think of it like rush hour. You either know you’ll leave early enough to not be stuck in traffic forever, or you’ll wait until it’s over to make a move which by then, you’ll just be late.
Don’t get too stressed out.
When looking for a new place, it can be very stressful.
“Do I get it furnished?”
“What if I don’t like my roommates?”
“Is parking good?”
“Where can I keep my dog?”
All those questions will come to mind when you’re looking for an apartment and IT’S OKAY! Just breathe and make note of all the questions you may have.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions and get clarification.
Do not hesitate to ask your leasing agent any questions you have. If you want to know if you’ll have a washer and dryer, ask. If you want to know the exact distance from your complex to school, ask. Not only is it their job to help you, but you should feel like the decision you make on an apartment is the best one and the one that fits your needs the best.
Do not rush to make an impulsive decision without weighing your options first.
Try not to rush into anything and weigh your options beforehand. You usually have at least 48 hours, maybe more, to make your decision about the apartment. Remember, you’re stuck there for the next year of your life. Don’t compromise on what you don’t want to. If you absolutely need a parking spot, don’t sign a lease without it being included. There is an apartment in the big wide world of Gainesville that can fit what you desire, you just have to explore every avenue before you find the perfect spot.
Make sure your finances are in order.
With that being said, always make sure to have money ready to go. A lot of people forget that there are deposit fees, pet fees, application fees, etc. Preparation is key and will allow you to be ahead of everyone else who doesn’t readily have money available.
Ask yourself if you would be able to call this place “home.”
SOMETHING TO REMEMBER! It’s going to be your home for a year, make the most of it and don’t settle for anything less than what you want. Living somewhere you love while in school is important because it will make college a much more enjoyable experience if you have a place to comfortably relax after your crazy week of finals, papers, and assignments galore. Don’t just find a place you like, find a home.
What are some other tips for finding the right University of Florida housing on campus? Comment for our readers below and share this article with friends!
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Paola is a guatemalan-american born in Miami, transformed into a Florida Gator. There's never been a Moombathon song she has heard and not liked. She is a journalist soul-searching for truth.