Living off-campus allows students to be independent in ways they don't get to when they live in a dorm but there are many cons to being so far away from campus:
1. Parking is awful.
This is a big one that everyone can agree on. For starters, the upfront cost of $300 to park at a school you already spend thousands of dollars at is absolutely ridiculous. Then, once you actually purchase a pass, trying to find a parking spot is nearly impossible. I personally have to show up to campus about a half an hour before my class starts so that I have time to find a spot. Some days, that doesn't work and I have to park illegally.
2. The free food is far away.
Imagine this, it's 7:30 at night and you are starving but the dining hall closes at eight. The fridge is filled with nothing but condiments and containers of leftovers that have been in there for a suspiciously long amount of time. Going to the campus dining hall would be a quick fix for anyone on campus. For those who live off-campus, going to the dining hall takes planning. First, you have to find your keys, hope you have gas, and then try to find a parking spot. It's so much easier to order pizza.
3. Money goes way quicker.
There are so many added expenses to living off-campus. The price of housing increases when you move to an apartment. You have to pay for gas unless you want to rely on the campus bus to bring you to class on time. You most likely have a smaller meal plan which means you're going to have to go grocery shopping and junk food adds up quick.
4. All your friends are spread out.
When everyone starts to move off-campus, they often have different apartment complexes to choose from which means your friends can end up farther than a short walk away. Trying to meet up with someone becomes a lot harder than sending an, "Are you in your room?" text. Hanging out with friends on the other side of town now requires a two-day notice and spontaneous hangouts rarely happen. You are also less likely to run into friends on campus because now you're basically never there.
5. Always need a DD.
Once you move off-campus, going to parties becomes more complicated and requires a plan. You can no longer decide to go out last minute because now you need a ride to parties instead of walking there. Plus, it sucks when you end up as the DD for the third weekend in a row.
Even though living off-campus does carry a level of independence, students should think it through before they make their decision, because it has its ups and downs.