Home for Summer: Tips for Packing Up Your Off-Campus Housing

By Kaitlin Hurtado on May 4, 2018

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The summer you’ve waited so long for is finally approaching and while you may have put plenty of thought into how you are going to spend your summer days when you go back home for summer, you might have forgotten to figure out what to do with your belongings when you spend the summer back home. Summer housing situations vary person to person, but if you’re going home for the entirety of summer – you may not having housing back at college due to being between leases or even subleasing your housing while being home for the summer.

Not having housing back at college also means that you won’t have a secure place for your belongings – you’ll have to pack up your belongings when you make the trip back home for summer. Make the transition easier by following these tips when you pack up your belongings to spend the summer back home.

suitcase unpacked

Photo by Anete L?si?a on Unsplash

Sort your belongings into what you want to keep and what you want to get rid of 

Start out by what is generally the easiest step – sort your belongings into what you want to keep and what you want to get rid of, or what is worth packing up and what is better off being sold/donated. There is no use in putting in a lot of effort into packing every single belonging – clothing, cookware, furniture, and more – and moving it to another location if you aren’t even going to use it in the future.

If you decide to get rid of an item – make plans to donate it or to sell it on local sale pages for your community or fellow college students. If you choose to sell some of your belongings, you get to get some extra cash to help you save up for storing/moving your belongings while going back home for summer or even buying another when you come back to college in the fall.

If you’re wondering whether something is worth the effort of packing up and moving it to temporary storage, like a bed or sofa, see if its necessary in your next space or if it would be easier on your bank account to part ways with it now and go for a cheaper option when you actually need the piece. If you are living with a new set of roommates when you return to college in the fall, talk to them and see if they are bringing a couch or dining table – if they are, you can sell yours now to save yourself the trouble of transporting it if you don’t need it in the future.

Organize your belongings to make the packing and unpacking easier

When packing, don’t just throw all of your belongings into boxes and trash bags in a rush. Not only will you want to beat yourself up later when you are struggling to find what you are looking for when you return to college in the fall, but you will also risk damaging your belongings due to improper storage and transportation.

Instead, divide your belongings into different boxes. Keep all your dishware together and wrap fragile dishes and glasses with old newspapers. Put all your desk and school supplies into the same boxes and containers so that you aren’t rushing to gather what you need for the first day of classes. Label your boxes with scraps of paper and/or packing tape to make the contents easier to identify, and if you have time, go as far as to list the exact contents of the box on a piece of paper attached to the exterior of the box.

Consider storage options that will work best for you

When you go back to summer and you don’t have housing to store it in back at college, your first thought may be to pack up all of your belongings and bring it back home with you, but it may not be your best option. If you live across the country from where you attend college, taking every single belonging with you may not be worth the time and money. You can’t exactly fly across the country with dishware and large furniture pieces and renting a truck to transport all of your belongings will be costly.

Even if you do live close enough to college that a road trip or two to transport all of your belongings won’t hurt your wallet or schedule,  your family may not want their house to turn into a temporary storage unit for the summer while you are back home. Make sure that you will have adequate space to store your belongings while back home before transporting all your belongings.

If moving your belongings back home for summer isn’t ideal, consider renting a storage unit closer to campus. This way, your belongings are close when you come back and they will all be in one place, left untouched.

Packing up all your belongings for summer doesn’t need to be the reason for your summer to start off wrong – remember to give yourself enough time to consider your options for summer storage in order to enjoy the summer you deserve!

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By Kaitlin Hurtado

Uloop Writer
Hello! I'm Kaitlin, a second year Literary Journalism major at UC Irvine. I'm a writer on Uloop's national team and a campus editor for UCI.

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