Search begins for perfect off-campus housing

Students do not have to sign a lease right away, but it is recommended to start shopping for off-campus housing early.

“Shop around and look at all options in BG, visit apartments and know where you want to live. Know what you’re paying for, ask people living there now what they pay, ask about problems with landlords,” said Chris Ostrowski, president of the Wood County Apartment Association.

Apartment complexes fill up differently every year depending on the demand and the amount of students who are eligible to live off-campus.

Depending on the amenities, some apartments fill up faster than others. Some students look for their own bathroom, while others only care about having their own room.

Sophomore Dwight James, who plans to live off-campus next school year, said he has already started looking for apartments. He wants his own bathroom and a larger room.

“I’m going to be older and I don’t want to live in the dorm. I want my own spot,” James said.

Some students currently living off-campus also thought about issues like these while selecting an apartment complex.

“I thought about the location, the rent and the bill[s] that we have to pay ourselves, like the utilities,” junior Marilynn Lynch, who resides in Summit Terrace, said.

Ostrowski said students should watch what they are paying for. “I recommend you sign a lease as soon as you find a place you like, after you look at all your options. So shop early. If you wait too long the selection will narrow,” he said.

Lynch also said students should consider additional services like whether or not the apartment complex offers a shuttle to campus.

“If someone doesn’t have a car this would be an important thing to look for,” Lynch said.

However, prices, location and apartment size should not only be considered when choosing an apartment. Another aspect of living off-campus is having a roommate.

“Find someone you know you’re going to be compatible with. Sometimes you know someone a month and think you want to live together and it doesn’t work out,” Ostrowski said.

Lynch plans to remain living off-campus.

“I think it’s a good opportunity to live off-campus once you reach a certain point where you don’t want to live on-campus anymore. I would recommend it because it’s a nice alternative to dorms. It may give you a better sense of maturity,” she said.

Students who have questions concerning off-campus housing are encouraged to e-mail the Wood County Apartment Association at [email protected]