Hey guys! As the summer goes on, you’re going to begin thinking about move in day. In this three part series, I am going to go over how to get ready for move in, what you need to pack, what you need to leave at home, and how to be a star on move in day! You’re at part one, but you can find part two here, and part three here!
When I was preparing for college, I searched pinterest for lists of what I should pack. What I didn’t realize was a lot of those lists are trying to sell you something (gasp) and they often recommend things you don’t really need. Half the time they are written by people who aren’t even in college. Here is what you really need to do to prepare for college move in day!
Figure out your space!
One thing I didn’t realize was how small my room was. I highly recommend looking at your school’s website and trying to determine the size of your room, especially if you never had the chance to see a room identical to the one you will be in. Even on the same campus, dorm rooms vary widely, so if you didn’t see your exact dorm, you won’t know what to expect. If you do get to see the room, try to measure the bed, desk, and dresser, as those are required items. There are many different configurations you can try, but it’s best to have an idea before you show up on moe in day!
Talk to your roommate!
This is so important. I work as a welcome week leader helping freshman move in, and I encountered so many freshmen who didn’t talk to their roommate and ended up with 2 mini fridges, 2 couches, 2 tvs… the list goes on. Long story short? You barely have enough room for one of everything, let alone two! You have to talk to them ahead of time so you don’t double up! If you aren’t able to get in contact try holding off on those big purchases until you see what the other person has. Maybe you can even split the cost!
Focus on essentials!
Yes, when you walk into bed bath and beyond and you see all of this cool interesting stuff, and you want it. Spoiler alert: you will not use 90% of that stuff. Focus on what you know you will need. Laundry hamper, a desk lamp, and an alarm clock are essentials. You don’t need a lot of decorative desk items, or kitchen items. Unless you are truly a die hard chef, it is very unlikely you need to bring kitchen items. The dorm kitchens are crowded and dirty, so you will want to eat most meals in the dining halls. Silverware, a few plates, bowls, and cups should be all you need. If you want to bake, most dorms let you rent out cookware so you don’t have to have your own. These items take up a lot of space and are rarely used.
Speaking of space stealers, time to discuss sports equipment. If you will genuinely play that sport once a week, go ahead and bring your equipment. But if you think you’ll only use it a few times, don’t bother! You can rent sports equipment at your recreation center when you really need it. If you really want something so you can play with friends, bring a frisbee, it takes up so little space, it will be worth it even if you never use it. Winter clothing is in the same vein. Unless you live so far away from your parents you won’t visit before winter, don’t bring it with you! When winter gets closer, you can take your summer clothes home and stock up on the warmer stuff!
Let’s talk about seating.
I know it seems fun and super cool to have a bunch of seating in your dorm, but it takes up so much space. If you want to have extra seating, I really do not recommend bringing a couch or futon. If you do, make sure you talk to your roommate and make sure it’s okay with them, because it will make space very tight. A better idea for seating is to have some type of fold-able chair that goes flat and takes very little space, like a bungee chair (I had one like this in my room) or a chair that doubles as storage, like a square storage ottoman (I had two just like this one). That way, all of your seating has other purposes or can be easily tucked away when you need more space.
That’s all for this post, but keep an eye out for the next two posts in this series focused on helping you feel totally prepared for college move in! Next we’ll be tackling what you really need to pack for a successful first semester!