Should you live on-campus or commute to school?

Whether you live on or off the campus site is a big decision you have to make during college preparations. College planning can be really stressful, and no longer is it just important to determine where and what you are going to study, but it’s also now essential you ensure your experience is the best it can be.

Part of this experience is where you’ll be living. Everybody is different, and you should be weighing up the options of living away or living on campus with an open mind. Your quality of life when studying at college is important, so be kind to yourself and look at the pros and cons of both. Here’s what we think.



Living in a double room dorm with another person can be a tricky situation to get used to, especially if you are two different people with rather different interests. Away from the hustle and bustle of campus can be a much more peaceful environment. If you value your privacy and often need a bit of you-time, then living off-campus could be the way for you to go.


More often than not, everything you need as a student will be on campus – washrooms, food, recreation, etc. There’s often little need for transportation. However, if you work a part-time job away from campus, then perhaps living closer to your employer will be the best option. This is especially true if you live in a bigger city.


Most dorms are limited, only offering microwaves and a fridge, so if you like to buy your groceries and cook your own homemade meals, then finding yourself an apartment might be best. If you’re not too skillful in the kitchen, there are of course cafeteria and restaurants on campus for you to go full board and get all your hot meals cooked for you.


If you see yourself as a bit of a social butterfly, then campus life will most likely be the best choice for you. You’ll be right up in the mix of it all, getting the most out of the exclusive experience that university offers you. However, if you like to come home to a relaxing haven, then dorm life won’t be for you. It’s a much harder task to concentrate and study in a noisy dorm too.



Student loans and grant funding can be spent on either living on or off campus. Although accommodation fees are usually a lot cheaper to live on-campus, you can also find relatively inexpensive residential housing if there are a lot of you to share the rent. However, you need to take into consideration that all expenses are only covered on campus, including internet, cable, and utilities.


24-hour security on campus is a great benefit to students. Guards are on duty all day and night, and so you can be sure to feel safe and secure if you are living in a dorm. You’ll feel a lot more cared for living on the university grounds. On-campus students also have direct access to medical services.

If you feel yourself struggling to come to a decision, write out your own pros and cons list, evaluating what option will be best for you, financially, socially, and emotionally. There’s a lot to take into consideration, so make sure your own personal preferences are what determine the choice you make. Good luck!