The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Wednesday March 22nd

Column: Our EIC almost ignored his way to not having on-campus housing

<p>A standard lease for an off-campus housing option.&nbsp;</p>
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A standard lease for an off-campus housing option. 

As April approached during my sophomore year of college, my roommate and I didn’t have a place to live for the upcoming school year. Our original plans fell through and we didn’t apply for on campus housing, but we were largely unconcerned. 

I remember sitting in Open Eye and joking about living at home and commuting, or just sleeping on a friend’s couch. 

You don’t want to be in that situation. It’s stressful and requires a lot of luck to get out of it.  

Housing is incredibly important to being a student. It can alter your budget, make it more difficult to attend class and affect your GPA/overall happiness. We’re in college, no housing is going to luxurious — unless you’re able to shell out the cash for one of the fancy places on Rosemary or Franklin. That said, being proactive will ensure you don’t end up sitting in a coffee shop using humor to distract from the fact you don’t have a place to stay next semester. 

I prefer off-campus housing, even though it does have some complications. The good part is that it creates a separation between school and home. You’re surrounded by more of your stuff, you have more privacy, it can be cheaper (not always though, so do your research) and you’re well removed from the hustle and bustle of school. I live in a house too, so as an introvert, it’s nice not having to interact with people in the hall. 

I feel you always hear about the positives of off-campus, but rarely about the negatives. If not having rushed mornings or long walks is your preference, maybe consider staying on campus. 

I feel less connected with campus, and find myself missing making Wendy’s runs at 1 a.m. instead of studying. Also, I find the shared experience of living in a dorm to be a positive element in developing a communal identity. As editor I interact with a lot of first-years, and when one says they live in Ehringhaus, my first-year dorm, we instantly have a connection. 

These are just my thoughts, which probably don’t mean much to you. But today you have the chance to interact with people much more knowledgeable than me. 

As a newspaper we hope to inform our readers about what they need to know. Housing is a complex issue, which is why Heels Housing was originally created. It helped put students in contact with potential landlords or apartment owners, all under one roof. 

This issue is dedicated to getting out information about housing. While a lot of apartments and houses get snatched up in the fall, there is still time. So please don’t dally on finding housing. 

I got lucky my sophomore year. A friend had a couple openings in his house that my roommate and I took, and it all ended up working out. 

That said, waiting is risky. So figure out your housing as soon as possible. 


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