Apartment living is much different than dorm life. There’s more room for you and your stuff. You don’t have to share a bathroom with everyone on the floor. And you have a lot more freedom to come and go as you please.
With that freedom comes more responsibility. To help spare you any surprises, we’ve put together this list of tips for first-time apartment renters.
Stick To a Budget
Although you may have been practicing this necessary life skill in the dorm, it’s even more important to continue to do so now. Everything can add up. If you’re spending too much money on frivolous things, then it can hurt you when it comes time to pay for the important things.
Take an inventory of your expenses, factor them into your monthly income, and determine the budget you’ll need for necessities. Once a monthly budget is established, it’s up to you to stick to it. Budgets help curb stress and provide you with valuable insight on what is truly important in your life.
Pay Rent on Time
While this seems like a given, it’s very easy for a hard-working graduate student to overlook this important part of apartment living. Be sure to set reminders on your phone, calendar and/or virtual assistant so you never miss a payment. Late rent can result in additional financial penalties and a bad credit record.
It’s also important to make sure that you understand all the financial obligations that come when you sign your lease- Is there an amenity fee? Are utilities included? Ask these questions upfront so there are no surprises later.
Choose a Reliable Roommate
Unlike dorm living, you have a choice of who you want to share your apartment with. Make sure you choose a roommate who is reliable. This not only means that they have the necessary finances to pay their half of the rent and utilities, but it also means that they are considerate of their neighbors, property, and your privacy. If your prospective roommate is giving you doubts, then it’s probably best to look for someone who is more responsible and reliable.
Create a Chore Chart
Apartments provide you and your roommate with more room to study, relax, cook and enjoy the freedom of adulthood. They also require a lot more cleaning than the dorm room. To ensure that your apartment is clean and presentable, create a chart that evenly and fairly assigns the required chores to you and your roommate.
Although it may be strong, avoid the urge to throw a large party in your apartment. Although the apartment is your off-campus home, it is not your personal property. Tenants are liable for any property damage that occurs during their residency. Hosting loud and boisterous events is disrespectful to your neighbors who may be working from home, trying to put children to bed, or just trying to relax after a long day. It’s okay to have friends over to your apartment, just keep the noise level to a minimum and be respectful of your neighbors and surroundings.
If you’re ready to leave the dorms behind and open the door to off-campus life, it’s time to check out the apartments at 3939 Chestnut or The Hub on Chestnut. Both properties are located in University City near the University of Pennsylvania, Drexel University or the University of Sciences campuses. Available in floor plans that are ideal for individuals and roommates, both locations offer flexible lease terms that are beneficial to students. Contact us today to schedule a tour!