What It's Really Like to Live in a College Apartment

August 17, 2022

This summer, I lived in my first college apartment. In my first year, I lived in the dorms, which is the most common option for freshmen at Cal. During my sophomore and junior years, I lived in my sorority house. So, during my first three years, I was living in situations where I was more independent than I was at home. of course, but I still had a lot of help.

In the dorms, I could go to my RA if something was wrong with my living situation and get it fixed pretty quickly. I didn’t have to worry about cooking or cleaning beyond cleaning my side of the bedroom. I ate at the dining hall every single day and never cooked a single thing for myself. My sorority house felt even cushier, with a housekeeper that came every day and an in-house chef that allowed me to continue to not cook or clean for myself. I’m very lucky to have had these experiences and been able to rely on meal plans and cleaning services that made my life as a student a lot easier. This year, however, I decided it was time to move into a more independent style of living, and summer was sort of my intro to what’s in store for me this year.

This summer I lived in a two-bedroom apartment with three other girls, sharing a common bathroom, living room, and kitchen amongst the four of us. This wasn’t my first time living with others of course, and definitely not my first time sharing a bathroom or common space, but it was my first time sharing a kitchen. I would say the biggest downside to living with roommates is sharing a kitchen. I don’t think I’ve met one person in college who hasn’t had “kitchen issues” with their roommates. No matter how clean everyone thinks they are, the dishes are inevitably bound to pile up in the sink. There will surely be crumbs on the counters and someone will definitely take up too much room in the fridge. These are things that everyone living in a college apartment has to get used to, because even if you’re moving in with your bestest friends who all claim to share a common hatred for messy roommates, they will happen.

Living in a college apartment brings more good than bad though! Yes, you’ll have to deal with messy roommates and a messy kitchen at some point or another, but you’ll also get to cook dinner in that same messy kitchen with your best friends. You’ll have homemade pizza nights and baking nights that end up in movie nights in your cozy little college apartment with friends you feel closer to than any other friends you’ve had because you live every day together.

You’ll gain independence and start to feel kinda like an adult when you come home from a long day of classes to a space that’s your own, and do your laundry, cook dinner, and tidy up the living room. You’ll almost forget what it was like for your mom or someone else to do these things for you, until you head home for Thanksgiving break.

One way or another, living in a college apartment will be an experience you will never forget, and it will definitely be one that will teach you a lot about yourself.