During certain times of life, you can't avoid the process of moving. Sometimes it's for a job, or sometimes you just need a clean slate and a new place to start over. Other times it's for school, and college students know all about the process of moving before classes begin.
Whether you're about to start your first semester or you're looking for tips to help your next moving process work more smoothly than last time, everyone could use some advice when it comes time to move. There are always bumps in the road that throw curveballs at you, so you need to know what to expect to make sure everything goes according to plan.
To help your future self out, read on for six moving mistakes that every college student can and should avoid. Once you know these mistakes aren't in your future, you can spend more time doing what you need to do. Focus on getting your books and starting the school year off on the best foot possible.
1. Don't Bring Too Much Stuff
This is a classic mistake that almost everyone has made at one point or another. New students might not know what to expect from their on-campus living arrangement, and it's easy to bring a lot of stuff to college when you've never experienced it before. It's better to be prepared for anything than not have what you might need — at least, that's what people think at first.
On-campus and even off-campus living most of the time requires students to live in smaller spaces than the average rental spots. Colleges want to use the campus space they have to accommodate as many students as possible. Leave stuff like your winter clothes at home to save on space, especially if you can make a trip home when the weather gets cold.
2. Coordinate With Your Roommate Beforehand
Social media has made it incredibly easy to get to know your roommate before you move in together, and it's in your best interest to do just that. Some people like to bring lots of decorations for their apartment so everything fits one theme, but your future roommate may not appreciate that so much.
It's also good to coordinate on other things too, so put together some questions to ask your roommate before move-in day arrives. Talk about things like your standards of living, what they'll be bringing for your common area and what day they'll move in. Don't forget to bond over common interests and things you're looking forward to doing, so you can plan fun bonding activities ahead of time.
3. Look Out for Rental Fees
Not every student is going to live on-campus, which means if you're living off-campus, you'll have more stuff to move into your new place. Furniture isn't provided at your typical apartment complexes, and bed-frames and couches are tough to fit into the back of your car.
Before you book a moving van, research commonly hidden moving company fees so you can avoid paying more than you've budgeted for. Read the fine print on rental agreements and book your van ahead of time so you don't pay extra for a service you're already stretching to afford.
4. Remember Travel Bags
You're going to be spending a lot of time writing papers and studying in the library, but when you finally reach those breaks in your semesters, what are you going to do? Most students will travel home to work old jobs or spend time with family and friends.
Weekend trips will require a bigger bag than just your backpack, so make sure you have at least one or two duffle bags you can store under your bed or in the back of your closet. They won't take up much room, and you'll be glad you have one if you spend the night at a friend's place or find yourself heading home for a short visit.
5. Don't Expect College to Provide Everything
There are many more resources on campuses now than ever before, but college still doesn't provide everything. You might have a convenience store with a milkshake machine outside your door room, but you can't get a toilet plunger or oven mitts there. Your room won't come equipped with a TV stand or even a mirror, either.
Before you leave your normal routine behind for college life, take note of what you use most often or what you want your routine to look like in the future. Do you value your shoe storage? Do you prefer a shelf in the shower? Do you like lots of throw pillows on your couch? You'll need to bring these things or buy them once you get to school if you know you won't enjoy life without them.
It's said that college is supposed to be a time of learning and developing, which means it's also meant to be a safe place to make mistakes. You're going to forget about deadlines and accidentally oversleep more than you think, and that's OK. There's no job on the line for you to lose right now, so now is the time to make mistakes and learn from them.
At the same time, there are easy mistakes you can avoid if you plan ahead. Moving to college is a major process to go through, so people make mistakes when doing so every year. Don't let yourself be part of that group.
Think about things like how much you're moving and how you're going to move it. Do you really need everything you've put in the back of your car? Have you taken some time to read your rental agreement before paying for a moving van?
Thinking ahead will save you time and money, so do as much as you can now before it's move-in day. You'll be grateful that you did when you're decorating your room and unpacking your kitchen dishes.There's a lot of fun to experience before classes start, so don't waste a second of your time on any avoidable moving drama.