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Universities can be quite persuasive when it comes to convincing students to live in uni halls. The thought of being away from home and having that freedom and independence is tempting. However, for some students, it makes more sense to live at home, especially if their university is close by.
Living at home can leave those students feeling as though they haven’t had an authentic university experience. Yes, halls of residence and house hunting for private accommodation is one aspect of that classic uni experience, however there’s a heap of benefits to living at home that a lot of people overlook.
You save money
This is one of the main benefits of living at home while at uni! You won’t have to worry about when rent is due, paying your bills, grocery shopping and living off pot noodles!
The main expenditure of commuting from home will probably be towards travel, however, with a 16-25 railcard you'll be maxing out the discount, leaving you with plenty of money to fund your lifestyle choices and being free of financial commitments.
There's less distractions
Uni can be quite hectic with all the partying, events, peer-influences etc. This can be distracting during the times when your degree needs the most attention. A lot of students find themselves pulling an all-nighter a day before their assignments are due, which isn't always the best decision.
By living at home, you won't be tempted to attend every single event or feel pressured by friends for those late-nights out. This is a huge benefit if you find that you become easily distracted and have yet to solve that study-life balance.
You can switch one and off
Quite often students are overwhelmed by the pressures of uni life. Students who live away from home are fully integrated in uni life may find themselves feeling homesick and questioning their choices.
By commuting from home, you get a dose of uni life but have the chance to switch off from all the madness at the end of the day. Plus you have that family support network you might miss if you were living at uni.
You'll be around home comforts
Sure, you gain a lot of experience like doing your own laundry, experimenting with recipes and sharing the cleaning responsibility. However, staying at home can mean you ease yourself into carving out your independence.
You have more time to focus on your assignments without pondering what to cook for dinner or having to wash up as everything is probably taken care of at home.
Having less chores to do can also give you time to take up a part-time job if you want to earn some extra cash or put time towards projects and causes that matter to you.
It all sounds great but remember, living at home can be challenging for some students who feel like they don't have a proper university life and are struggling to build friendships. However, there are ways to overcome these limitations.
Make more effort to socialise
Whilst living at home can be chilled and comfortable, you don't want three years to pass and regret missing out on all the fun uni life brings! One of the biggest worries is not making friends when you live off campus at home, but there are ways around this.
Integrating yourself through joining societies and going to events led by the Students’ Union is a good way to ensure you still build meaningful friendships despite living at home. You'll also be engaged in activities that interest you so there's a high chance that you'll stay committed to going to events too.
Use the uni services available to you
You're paying for university so make the most of this! Although it’s tempting to stay at home and look at online journals/e-books from your bed – don't! Go to uni and explore the library and make use of the other facilities they offer to help students.
Unis will often provide one to one help with assignments, advice and wellbeing services which you should seek out whenever you feel in need of them. Just because you don't live on campus doesn't mean you're not entitled to use them.
Attend all of your lectures
As tempting as it is to miss a lecture, this can easily spiral out of control and before you know it, you’re stressing and trying to cram everything in last minute. It's extremely important you keep to a routine and make sure you attend your lectures and seminars. Even if you only have one lecture that day, go!
A skipped lecture or seminar means you miss out on asking questions and information that can help you in assignments. Sure, there are notes and supporting material that you may be able to download, but nothing beats hearing it all directly from your lecturer, who brings real-life experience and much more context with them.
Plus, attending lectures gives you the chance to get to know your fellow coursemates better so you can begin to socialise with them and feel as though you're not missing out so much living at home.