4 Ways to Use Social Media for the Off-Campus Housing Hunt
Dorm life is not always all it is cracked up to be. If living off campus, either in an apartment or a house, is more of your style, then it is time to pack up and get searching.
Living off campus can have a variety of benefits as compared to living in a dorm. You will not have to abide by as many rules, the rent is typically cheaper, and you get to have a little taste of independence and adult-ing.
When you are looking for a new place to live off campus, whether it is an apartment or a house, conducting the search using social media might be the last thing on your mind. Craigslist, Apartments.com, and other house-searching websites might be your first inclination. The hunt for off-campus housing can be a frustrating and unrewarding process if you cannot find your dream pad.
Social media does not only provide you with a wide span to search from, but it can also allow you to enlist your friends and family in the search as well. Sometimes the conventional websites you are used to seeing advertised are not the best solutions. Sometimes you really just need that insider look at a potential place to live and luckily, social media will have a lot to offer you!
Read on to learn about all the ways that you can use social media to your advantage when searching for off-campus housing.
One of the many beautiful features of Facebook is the wide variety of groups that you can choose to join. If you have not already, joining your university’s class group page will be your first step in having a successful search. Students will post on these pages when they are trying to put their apartment or house up for rent, or when rental companies are trying to advertise vacancies.
Another good tip is to seek specific groups through Facebook. For instance, Florida State University students host a variety of groups and pages where students can learn more about potential housing opportunities. There is an FSU Craigslist group, a specific Apartments and Housing Group, and more. Students post their information here knowing that hundreds or thousands of other students will be able to see what they have posted. One of those students could potentially be you!
Your Own Personal Connections
If you are not having much luck with your social media, try asking around! Use your social media friends and/or followers as a resource to help you find what you need. Perhaps a friend of a friend of a friend is giving up their lease and needs someone to fill the spot. Message your university friends and ask them what they know about off-campus housing. They will probably be able to provide an insider’s look at what living in a certain location is like before you sign off on any paperwork.
Keep your followers and/or friends updated on the search by posting about it regularly (not every second of every day, though; you do not want to be a pest either). The more you write about it, the more likely that someone with the information you need will see what you have written. Your friends list might just be your saving grace in your apartment search.
Various Social Media Accounts
Let’s face it. Everyone is on social media nowadays. Student housing offices typically have some form of social media account, whether it is Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or even Tumblr. They use these accounts to essentially get down with the sickness (Kudos if you get the reference) and keep students up to date on what is happening with their complex. They will post all sorts of information about the complex, including lease and fee information, pictures of individual apartment rooms, and any and all deals and steals that you can use to your advantage.
An apartment complex’s social media account just might be enough to draw you in and end your search. Keeping track of these accounts could help you to find your one true off-campus love.
Your university is here to help you too! For instance, the University of Florida and the University of Connecticut both feature student forums where students can post about off-campus housing opportunities. Do a Google search of your university and “off campus housing” to see if your university offers a similar guide.
Typically, they are arranged by distance from campus, student ratings, or other unique features. Utilizing your university forum could uncover some potential housing opportunities that you might not have known about prior to using it. This method of searching also gives you an advantage because more than likely these houses and apartments have been scoped out by faculty members to make sure that they are legitimate. No scams here!
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