As I finish out my first year living on campus, I thought I'd share five things my parents and I decided were luxuries I didn't need that ended up being sort of necessary.
1. A Minifridge/Microwave
My parents bought me the unlimited meal plan, and I was living in a single dorm, so there was really no need for a fridge or a microwave, right? Well, let me tell you, when you have a 102 degree fever and you live on the third floor of a building that's a 10 minute walk from the dining hall, you're going to want something to eat from your room. Or when you stay during break and can't afford to Postmate every meal or go to Main Street twice a day. Pop tarts and ramen noodles you have to heat up with warm sink water can only go so far. At least get a fridge.
2. Room decor
I didn't bring any pictures or posters to hang up on my walls because I didn't trust those command strips and I really couldn't afford a lot in the way of decor. As a result, I left up my decorations from big/little week almost a whole six months ago because they're the only decorations I have in my room, and it's nice to have something on the walls.
3. A really good fan
If you get stuck (or in my case, unknowingly choose) a building without air conditioning in a state with 99% humidity about 99% of the first couple months of the school year, you're going to want a REALLY good fan in your room. This fan is an investment. On a related note for humid climates: bug spray.
4. Extra towels & sheets
You don't know what your laundry schedule is going to be like. You don't know if your floormates are going to leave a ridiculously huge puddle outside the shower that you want to mop up- or you accidentally drop your towel in. Try to have at least one extra of each.
5. A good laundry basket
I chose my laundry basket because it matched my color scheme for my dorm, and it was like $3. What I didn't anticipate was how horrible walking up and down three flights of stairs with that thing full of clothes was going to be, plus my detergent and fabric softener. I get bruises every time I do my laundry. Also, as you can see, this one broke. If you're going to be carrying the basket a long distance, get a plastic one you can carry in your arms.
What are some things you didn't think you'd need but were wrong about?