How To Find Out Of State Housing When You're Moving

By Danielle Wirsansky on January 7, 2019

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You are about to start your next big adventure! Not only are you going to college, but you have decided to live off campus too, which truly marks the beginning of your independent life! No Resident Assistants to watch over you, there are bills you have to pay, there are no curfews and rules like no candles in your room. It is a world of freedom (and responsibility).

But in your case, you are also going to school out of state. Whether you are about to start school out of state for the first time or you are returning to the same out of state school you attended before, but now you will live off campus, this can make the process of finding a place a little more difficult for you. You can’t just pop over for a few hours to scout out locations and find a place on your own.

So, what is an out of state student to do? Read on for some tips on how to find out of state housing when you are moving!

University Approved Housing

Something that many students are unaware of is the fact that your University often partners or works with local housing developments and apartment complexes to help provide their students with appropriate housing. While of course your college would rather that you live on campus in one of their dorms, they usually realize that most students will eventually want to (and will) move off campus. And the school’s top priority is in making sure its students are safe.

Most universities, in pursuing this, will actually have a resource for students to check out of student-friendly off-campus housing. They will provide you with a list of places that they think are both affordable and safe for you to live in, with stated floorplans and monthly rent, so you can choose the best fit for you. Many even provide a way to connect with potential roommates, if you are looking for someone to join you in your off-campus lease. Often, there is a message board too that you can use to talk about the housing with other students and get feedback, testimonial, and all sorts of questions answered that could help allay any fears you have since you will be moving from out of state.

If you happen to already be a student at the school but you currently live on campus and want to move off-campus the following year, your university will also probably host a housing fair where all student-friendly apartment complexes will come on campus to talk about their properties. Many will have special and discounts if you sign a lease too. Be sure to be on the look out about these so you can take care of your housing situation before you are far away in another state for the summer.

Housing Search Sites

You can also take an approach that many students, even if they do not live out of state, use to start pursuing leads: the internet! If you are not sure where to start, then begin by using more trusted housing search websites to help you narrow it down.

Obviously, you cannot trust everything on the internet and you should not just blindly sign a lease or agreement. But they can be starting points to help you figure things out like how much housing actually costs, so that you can better discern what your own budget will be. It can help you figure out what amenities you want or are even deal breakers, like having an in-unit washing machine or dishwasher. Maybe you are looking for a complex that covers partial utilities, like your water bill.

More trusted sites include Zillow, Apartment Finder, Apartments, Apartment Guide, and Forrent.

Photo by Daria Shevtsova from Pexels


If you can manage this, take a visit to where your school is for a couple of days. This should not be time to wander around and find housing options. You should already have a list of places to visit that you are interested in. Book tours of those properties and decide. There is nothing like seeing a place in person to make sure you are not being tricked or cheated and will truly be comfortable in a place. And if you like a place, you can sign the paperwork right there and bing, bang, boom! Your housing is taken care of.

However, not everyone can manage this, and you should not feel bad if you can’t. There are often virtual tours you can take of a property as well.

Whatever avenue you choose to go down when figuring out your future housing situation from out of state, just make sure you are really happy with your choice and have really gone over the details so that you know what you are getting yourself into!

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