Luxury could be disastrous

The lack of available (and livable) housing on campus and the basic need for larger personal space makes the option to move off campus seem inviting, right? You can have your own room, your own bathroom, and you won’t have to worry about sneaking your boyfriend or girlfriend up to your room.

Beware! There are three critical issues to consider when making the decision to move off campus: roommates, location and living expenses versus income. If you don’t seriously take these things into consideration you may be legally bound to a 12 month nightmare.

First of all, before you choose housemates you must ask yourself if you can live with another person or persons? Are there things about this person that you could grow to hate? Will living together ruin your friendship? It’s critical that you answer these questions honestly: It’s impossible to switch housemates once you’ve all entered into the lease.

Living on campus, however, allows you and your housemates to disagree while someone mediates the argument and if things don’t change more can be done for you like getting a new room assignment.

Secondly, if you don’t have a car you really shouldn’t think about living off campus at all. It’s hard enough getting a ride to Wal-Mart. Also, keep in mind that TalTran stops running to certain areas of town well before 7 p.m. making the possibility of getting stranded very real.

The last and most important issue to contemplate is the cost. Ask yourself, “Can I afford to live here?” Living off campus is expensive if your parents aren’t paying the bills. I thought I could handle my rent, car payment, car insurance, cell phone, home phone, internet access, and light bill.

My monthly bills totaled about $700 and I didn’t even have a job. I, like so many other students, depended on my net checks. But we all know that they are rarely on time and bill collectors are not trying to hear that your net check is late.

These problems can be avoided if you decide to live on campus. If you hate your roommates, you can be moved. The Venom runs until 10 p.m. to all dorms.

The university just added two nice, new apartment buildings off campus. Better yet, if the net check is late you won’t have to worry about eviction because you can’t pay them until they pay you.

It’s a virtually stress free solution to a self-imposed dilemma.

Alexia Robinson, 20 is a magazine production student from Jacksonville. She can be reached at<