Even after a few months, it's become very clear that I made the right choice to live off campus.
Pro: You can have a pet.
I can't imagine how I would feel if I were not able to have my baby cats with me. They help me reduce the amount of stress I'm feeling. As soon as I hold them in my arms, the stress melts away. I feel that without my cats, I would be a ball of stress and I commend those who go without it.
Pro: You spend less than dorming.
Dorming is expensive. Anyone who has applied or goes to college knows that for a fact. Living off campus isn't cheap either but if you do the math, it comes out to about half of what you pay for dorming, especially if you live with other people. The more people that live with you, the less you will pay. You will likely leave college with less debt, that's for sure.
Con: You can't sleep in between classes.
This semester I have relatively big gaps in between my classes but since I commute, I cannot nap in between them. If I were living on campus, I know I'd be running back just to sleep until my next class. It must feel great to do that instead of hang around the buildings all day.
Con: Sometimes you're out of the loop.
People make friends on campus and if you're there at all times, I can imagine it is easier to be close to people. You see them all the time. There are also events that happen on campus that you may not even know about when you commute. The community builds and you may miss out on that. It can suck but it all depends on what you're looking to get out of college.
Pro: You have your own space.
Dorms are tiny and cramped. Sharing a space like that with someone you barely know seems uncomfortable. It seems like a hassle. I have my own room with all my things, I have a huge bed that I share only with my pets. I can't say I use it much but the option is there. I shower when I want and there is no need to worry about being seen or having to wait. You're not relying on the cleanliness of others.
Pro: It is easier to concentrate.
I don't know how people who dorm do it. There's so many people around and so many other things besides homework that could be happening. The fire pit sounds so inviting and I would rather be there than do my homework. I feel like with the amount of people and noise there is, it could be hard to concentrate. The silence I experience here is something I never thought I would. It is almost maddening but it allows a lot of productivity.
Ultimately, it all depends on who you are and what you want. You may like dorming and think it's awesome. I can say that living off campus is pretty cool too. Anyone who has the chance should try it.