Cornering a Choice Crib
Tips and tricks for landing the best off-campus housing next year
Published: Thursday, October 18, 2012
Updated: Thursday, October 18, 2012 10:10
Even though the first quarter is only halfway over, competition is heating up to secure off-campus housing. Packs of students are forming and pestering current residents of popular houses to see if they are re-signing. Before you become the 10th group of girls to bang on the door of Blue Moon, read the following tips on finding where (and with whom) to live next year, and how much it will cost.
When you are off campus, you are more isolated from the campus community, so you will be spending a lot more time with these people. On lazy weekends, they might be the only people you see all day. So take a little more time when deciding whether or not you can see a long-term relationship happening with them.
Your future housemates should also be responsible. Paying rent and utilities on time is essential so you don’t get in trouble with your landlord, and you want to live with people you can count on to keep the house clean. And make sure you live with people who party roughly the same amount as you; it will get old real quick if you always have to be quiet because your housemate goes to bed early.
Deciding where to live
While it may seem like the only choices for housing are the select houses on Bellomy Street, in reality there are tons of places off-campus to live. Houses on Bellomy, Alviso, Lafayette and Washington Street are the most visible, but also the most expensive and hardest to secure since they are so sought after. Streets like Locust, Poplar and Mission also have houses that are only steps further from campus and the party scene. In addition, houses on “Dark Side” are a great option. They are generally much cheaper and easier to get, as well as closer to the bars and most classroom buildings.
The apartment complexes around campus are attractive because you don’t have to deal with maintaining a lawn and taking the trash out to the curb. While there may be less privacy and you can’t tan on your lawn on a nice day, apartments can feel like “grown-up dorms” in that there are always people around and most of them are Santa Clara students.
When moving off campus, money starts to matter a whole lot more than it did on campus. Rent, utilities and food money start to add up; these are things you don’t have to think about when living in the dorms. Room and board on campus is $12,276. Even including food and cable, a house with $700/month rent would still be cheaper, especially when considering that you could live there year-round. A double room on “Dark Side” will cost between $500-$600/month, but a double on “Light Side” costs about $100 dollars more.
Contact Liz Wassmann at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (408) 554-4852.