If you are a student and live off-campus in your own studio or apartment, you can consider yourself lucky. According to a 2013 study, only a small percentage of students choose this housing option, despite the higher costs. However, with the independence and peace of mind that you enjoy being on your own, without the noisy presence of other students, also come a series of responsibilities, especially in your first weeks living there. Unless you managed to find a fully furnished study or apartment, you will have to add furniture it. This can be quite a daunting task and, most of the time, your first test of adulthood. Here are some tips to furnish your off-campus home with nice furniture, and still have some money left to go out
Recycle and upcycle
If you are on a budget and you can’t afford to buy all the furniture needed for an apartment, don’t say no to asking friends and family for help. Your parents can help you transport some of the furniture you have at home or you can ask around to see if anyone can lend you a few items: a mattress from the guest bedroom, a couple of extra chairs, a night stand that nobody uses anymore or an office chair. You might also want to check online ads for free furniture. These aren’t always easy to find, but some people want to get rid of all their old furniture when redecorating and you might find some great items there. Sure, they might not all be in the same style, but you can replace them one at a time later on.
Look for bargains online
Once you’ve gathered all the free furniture you could find, look for the missing online. Why not on a showroom? Because showrooms are usually quite far and you don’t find as many deals and discounts. Online however, on sites such as InteriorSecrets.Com.Au, sales are on almost every day of the year. This your best chance of finding unique, high quality furniture that adds some personality to your off-campus apartment.
Buy functional multi-purpose pieces
Few students can afford living on their own, off campus, in a large apartment. Most of the time, the space is limited and you can’t find all the furniture you would want. This is why you have to learn to invest in functional, multi-purpose pieces. Here are some ideas for you:
- An expandable sofa that can be turned into a bed
- Ottoman chairs that also offer space for storage
- An office that can also function as a vanity table
Where to splurge and where to save
Not all furniture items are worth the investment – especially when you don’t have a lot of money. For example, you can spend less on non-essential objects such as decorative shelves and coffee tables. However, when it comes to the sofa or mattress, you should be ready to pay more, otherwise you’re in for a few sleepless nights and backpains. Also, you should invest in a sturdy desk and an ergonomic office chair. That is where you will be doing your homework for years to come and you don’t want to experience spine problems from such an early age.