College students who choose to live off campus may save some money, but they also need to be more independent when it comes to maintaining and managing how they live. If you are confident that you are truly read to live in off-campus housing at Delaware College of Art and Design, consider moving forward by taking the following steps.

Step 1: Choose an Apartment that Fits Your Budget

When you move off campus you are responsible for not only the cost of rent, but also for the costs of electricity, Internet, groceries, cleaning supplies, and everything else it takes to maintain a home. When looking at apartments, note what is included in the rent, like utilities or electric, and what is not included. Plan a budget and look for an apartment that falls within that budget. Staying within your budget while living off campus will make your life and your studies much easier.

Step 2: Pick the Right Roommate

Living with a roommate will lower your costs, but finding the right roommate can be tricky. If you plan to live with a friend, be sure that your lifestyles are compatible and that you are both willing to pay equal shares of the expenses. Whether you live with a friend or find someone new to room with, a written agreement similar to one you would sign when sharing a dorm room with someone should be drafted and signed by both parties.

Step 3: Practice Self-Discipline

It’s hard to forget you’re at college when you’re living in a dorm, but off-campus living could cause distractions from your studies. Spending as much time as possible at DCAD, setting aside certain times a day for studying, or even establishing a study space in your apartment are ways to help yourself feel like a student even though you are living away from school.

Step 4: Get to Class and Around Town

The ideal apartment may be one that’s within walking distance of the college. If you are farther away than that, you can use Delaware Transit (DART) buses to get to school and around town. If you have a car or are thinking about getting one, remember that there is no on-campus parking at DCAD, but students can utilize metered street parking near campus.

Step 5: Remember Campus

Just because you’re living off-campus doesn’t mean you can’t still use DCAD’s campus amenities. You can dine, study, and socialize on campus, and doing so may help your studies and make you feel more involved in the campus community. All students can join any of DCAD’s student groups and organizations, such as the popular Writing Club or Animation Club.

Choosing off-campus housing at Delaware College of Art and Design is a great option for students who are looking for more independence. If you do thorough research on housing and know your budget before deciding on a place to live, consider the roommate question carefully, and keep your studies your top priority, living off campus may be the ideal situation for you.