Monday, August 4, 2014

College: Furnishing Your Dorm

"College" is a series of posts for college students, present and future. It's based entirely on my experience as a current college student and that of my friends. It's that time of year again and I figured that meant I should bring these back. 

If you're new to college and moving into the dorms this fall, you're probably trying to figure out what you need to bring. Here are a few things to keep in mind when picking the furniture for your dorm.

Read housing regulations
Different dorms have different rules on what you can and cannot bring. Don't grab that George Foreman grill only to arrive and find out they're not allowed. I'm not allowed to have candles or clip-on lamps, because of the fire hazard, so some things would be obvious on what's okay and what isn't. Rules can even vary between halls on the same campus, so make sure that your hall doesn't have anything specific. For instance, on my campus, custom lofts are allowed only in certain residence halls.

There is a limited amount of space
Dorms are not large and you're probably going to be sharing them with one or more people. Maximize your space with better organization and don't buy anything that'll take up half the room by itself.

You have to take everything home or store it at the end of the year
All that stuff you're buying many not seem like a lot at the time, but at the end of the year when you're trying to balance studying for finals with packing it'll be a lot more than you think it is. Also, I've learned that stuff tends to accumulate over the year and that adds up.

Get together with your roommate(s) 
If your school gives you the contact information of your roommate before the semester starts, take advantage of it. If you're willing to share some furniture, that means more room. It's better to coordinate than for everyone to show up on move-in day only to find that you have two fridges, two TVs, but no microwave.

Make your dorm your own
You're going to be living there for several months so personalize your own space. Go traditional and populate your walls with lots of posters, or think outside the box.