So you’ve graduated high school, and now you’re off to work on that higher education – it’s an exciting time. But it can also feel overwhelming to think about packing up, moving out, and all you have to do to prepare. Starting college is stressful.
Luckily, we’ve compiled a pretty comprehensive college move-in checklist with all the basic dorm room essentials, as well as some tips for living successfully with a roommate.
Living with a Roommate
Unless you attended a boarding school, this is likely the first time you’ve had to share a living space with someone you’ve never met before. If possible, try to begin developing a relationship with your new roomie prior to move-in day. Find them on social media and send a message introducing yourself. Ask about what they’re planning on bringing to the room. Many items are easily shared, such as a microwave, mini-fridge, or coffee maker, and space in a dorm room is often limited, so you’ll want to avoid duplicate large items when you can.
Find out whether they have any ideas for dorm decor so you can shop for things that coordinate. It would also be good to know if they’re bringing anything that takes up a lot of space, such as an armchair or a bookshelf. You may find it helpful to rent a storage unit for holding the stuff you don’t have space for, or for between semesters
Ask about when they plan on moving in, and the type of help they’ll have for it. Will it just be their parents, or will cousins or friends be there to help as well? If you both have small groups, it may be helpful to plan your moves at the same time – many hands make light work. But if one of you is having a large group help out, it would probably be best to stagger your move-ins to avoid traffic jams in the hallway.
Talk about how each of you plans on using the room. Most college students use their dorm rooms for a combination of studying, hanging out, and sleeping. Determine if either of you would like to designate a time slot where the room is solely a study space, what things are okay to be shared and what things aren’t, and how late you’re okay with having other people over.
Discuss your sleeping/studying preferences as well – do either of you need white noise to sleep? Music to study to, or silence? Will these things bother the other person? And don’t forget to discuss cleaning/organizing habits, and if necessary, hash out a cleaning schedule. Talking about these things from the get-go helps prevent uncomfortable situations later on.
Just get to know them. Find out if they played any sports in high school, whether they’re planning on trying out for any teams now, what they’re planning on studying, or whether they love books as much as you – not only will questions like these help to break the ice, you may even discover a kindred spirit in the process.