One of the most important decisions students make during their college careers is deciding whether to live on or off-campus. Each choice comes with advantages and disadvantages.

Pros and Cons of Living Off Campus

These are some of the pros and cons of living off-campus.

Four Pros of Living Off-Campus

There are several reasons students might prefer living off-campus. If one or more of these advantages of living in UW Off Campus Housing appeals to you, consider choosing an off-campus housing option.

  1. Fewer Logistical Challenges

Moving into on-campus housing can be extremely chaotic. There are tighter restrictions on when you can move in and move out than you find with most off-campus housing. There is often a huge crowd of students and parents frantically trying to get settled on move-in and move-out days. You usually have to find another place to live during holiday breaks. Plus you also have to spend time dealing with fire drills, evacuation drills, and other realities of residence hall life.

  1. More Control Over Who You Live With

Residence halls often arbitrarily group students by age, major or other factors that may not place you with a group of students you enjoy living with. Additionally, some residence halls randomly pair you up with a roommate or roommates. Living off-campus gives you more control over who your roommates and neighbors are.



  1. Increased Privacy

On-campus housing often means sharing a small room with one or more other people and sharing resources such as computers, restrooms, and shower facilities. Even if you have one or more roommates, you will probably have more privacy in off-campus housing.

  1. Lower Cost

The biggest draw of off-campus housing for most students is the lower cost. You will usually pay more money for less space and fewer options when you live on campus. Living off-campus can be a good choice for budget-conscious students.

Pros and Cons of Living Off Campus - student housing

Four Cons of Living Off-Campus

Off-campus living comes with many benefits. However, there are also a few not-so-great things about it.

  1. Commuting

Driving to class every day and hunting for parking can be a real hassle for some students. Additionally, the cost of gas, insurance, vehicle maintenance, and parking fees is an additional expense.

  1. Fear of Missing Out

Not having easy access to campus events can lead to some serious FOMO. However, if you aren’t super into the social aspects of college this may not matter as much to you.

  1. May Be More Difficult To Make Friends

Because you have to drive to campus for everything, it may be more challenging to make friends by participating in campus events or forming study groups. However, you can mitigate this issue by choosing off-campus housing where other students live.

  1. Fewer Resources

When you live on-campus, your Resident Advisor can provide various resources to help make your college experience easier and more rewarding. However, some schools also have groups that assist off-campus students.

Whichever housing option you choose, there will be both advantages and disadvantages to your choice. The best option for you depends on your personality, goals, and budget.