An Off-Campus Interview: Amanda and Ella

When did you start the search for off-campus housing?
AL:  End of January I think

Did you think you were late?
AL & EM: Yeah

Was it hard finding something?
EM: Not as hard as I expected, within a couple of weeks we looked at 4 or 5 places and we found this place.
AL: All the houses were gone, but all the apartments were still around.

Did you initially want an apartment or did you want a house?
EM: Yeah we never really looked at houses.
AL: I guess it felt last minute and so we didn’t have enough people to get together to put in a house so we figured an apartment would be best.
EM: We knew we wanted to live with each other and didn’t have a big group and so many people were already on-campus that have 4 years of housing so it was hard to find others so it would have been hard.

How do you like living together?
AL: It’s a lot of fun living together I guess.
EM: I guess?
AL: No, no it is
EM: I think it’s a lot of fun. I was a little nervous I guess, not living with Amanda, but living with just one other person this far away from campus and how that would go, but so far we’re both still alive and don’t hate each other so I think things are going well.
AL: Yeah I think I was nervous about that too at the beginning and I feel like it’s going pretty well. And I see a lot more people than I thought I would see, like I thought I would see absolutely no one because I don’t live on campus, but I see so many people during the day.

How’s the walk to campus?
EM: It’s like 10 minutes to get to lower and the plex and that’s super easy. To get to class is a little bit more of a pain.
AL: Yeah but the bus is right there outside our door on south st.

Do you guys prefer on-campus or off-campus?
AL: I feel like it’s really cute that we have such a nice space off-campus, but I would prefer to be closer to classes.

EM: Yeah part of me would like to be closer, I actually had 4 years of housing, but I wanted to live with Amanda and it was actually cheaper off-campus. So while I definitely miss being closer to everything, it is really nice to have this be cheaper and to live with someone that I enjoy and not 8 other people again.
AL: Yeah this is so much nicer than living with so many other people.
EM: Going from a 9-man to a single in an apartment with only 2 people in it is great.

Do you have any advice to people who are choosing their roommates for off-campus?
AL: If you’re looking to live with a bigger group of people, start looking a lot earlier, because there was only really like, well this fit 4 people. Four people lived here last year, and I don’t know how they did that, it’s kind of small for 4 people in the rooms. So definitely start looking early.
EL: And I think for picking, I don’t think it’s really any different for how you pick your roommates for on-campus. You obviously want them to be your friends but make sure they are people you could live with not just that you’re friends with. But I don’t think it’s really any different for on-campus or off in that aspect.

How did you guys find this place?
AL: The realtor that’s right across the street from BC.

Did you go on the BC Off-Campus housing website?

So you used an agency, did you have to pay a broker’s fee?
AL: Yes
EM: I think it was one month’s rent.

What’s the best thing about living off-campus?
EM: I think being able to go home and only having two of us here and having our own place and being done for the day.
AL: I think being significantly closer to Chipotle, I go there all the time.

Do you guys cook or do you have meal plans?
AL: We have a lot of frozen stuff that we defrost and we’ll cook pasta a good amount, but there’s not so much fancy cooking here.
EM: We eat really healthy, but we’ll just do a lot of sandwiches instead of full-on meals because we both get home really late so cooking dinner at 10 o’clock isn’t ideal.

Did you get meal plans too?
AL: Yeah I got the $800 flex-plan, but I definitely eat here more than I eat on-campus.
EM: I tend to eat lunch on campus just about every day during the week, but breakfast and dinner are all here.

Where do you usually go grocery shopping?
AL: We don’t, we get Peapod deliveries.
EM: Yeah it’s really easy and you can get it within 1-2 days of your order

Is it more expensive than a regular grocery store?
AL: Not really the delivery fee is only like $5-10.
EM: And it’s the same stop and shop prices.

How did you furnish your apartment?
AL: It came furnished.
EM: Yeah it came furnished and then we bought new desks but everything else was here already.

Did you have to pay extra or was there an extra charge to have it furnished?
EM: I think the rent is a little more expensive than those who got unfurnished places, but we also have a 10-month lease so it evens out by not paying those two months.

What’s the best place to study? Or do you guys stay here?
AL: I stay here a lot but Fuel is also a good spot.
EM: Yeah I usually stay here or I still love Bapst so I go there sometimes if I’m already on campus.

What’s the best advice you could give people who are looking for off-campus housing?

EM: Just start early, but also don’t panic if you don’t. I mean we found a place within 2 weeks of looking when we started in January. So definitely get ahead, but don’t panic if you haven’t found anything first semester. 

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