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Living Off-Campus
Living Off-Campus header photo

Living Off-Campus

Checklist

This checklist is designed to assist you through your transition to off-campus living. You will find the checklist to be a helpful tool and full of resources for your journey as a commuter student.

After your move, include time to stay involved in activities and connecting with friends and plan your day to maximize your time on campus. Review "Being a Good Neighbor" and Rock Hill Ordinances. Also, remember to set a schedule that will allow for additional commute time.

Budgeting

Please email us if you've found a better site for information on budgeting.

Financial Aid

Contact Financial Aid to be informed about your financial status before you move off-campus.

Note: Some students may receive a refund, but not until the school year begins. Plan ahead to avoid frustration and let that refund work for you!

Housing

Create a list of housing priorities to help decide where to look. Things to consider are location, cost, roommates, and services (amenities, included utilities, etc.). Research available places by talking to fellow students, reviewing the classified ads in newspapers, searching the internet, and driving around town. Helpful sites include:       

Please email us with suggestions for additions to this list.

Planning

  • Confirm activation date for utilities
  • Confirm move-in date and procedures with landlord/roommates
  • Consider purchasing renters insurance to protect your property in case of emergency
  • Pack personal belongings and personal property
  • Purchase necessary supplies
  • Rent/Borrow necessary vehicles

Preparing

  • When?
    • Give yourself plenty of time to do research and explore your options. When asked, many students consider the end of spring break to be the crucial time for locating an apartment. Do your research in the weeks before spring break to make sure you're prepared and fully informed.
  • Where?
    • Do you need to be close to a place of employment?
    • How close will your new home be to other weekly activities like shopping, church, fitness center, and friends?
    • How close to Winthrop University do you need to be?
    • Whatever the distance, give it a trial run to see how long your commute will be during different times of the day.
  • Who and What?
    • What type of living environment do you want? Does a house, townhouse, or apartment best fit your lifestyle, interests, and budget? Will you have a roommate (or two), pets, or other family members to consider? How will you get from your new home to work and school?

Scholars Walk 

Roommates

If you will be living with a roommate, discuss the costs of renting and have a plan before making any commitments. Good communication now will save a lot of frustration later. Consider a roommate contract to clearly outline expectations and agreements.

Conflicts

  • Address conflicts as soon as possible. The sooner you make your roommate aware of a problem, the more likely a mutually satisfying solution may be reached.
  • Address concerns directly to your roommate, preferably in person. Avoid communication through e-mail, IM, text messages or other roommates or friends. The more personal and direct your communication is, the easier it may be to solve the problem.
  • Communicate clearly and avoid accusations or blaming. Use "I" statements when possible and talk about the results of situations or behaviors instead pointing fingers.
  • Consider drafting a roommate agreement that clearly describes expectations and solutions.

Landlords

Schedule a time to walk through properties and pick a place that meets your needs. Talk with the landlord about costs, services, terms of the lease, roommates policies, parking, utilities, amenities, availability, pets, repairs, and references. A few sites that will help you know what to look for in a landlord include:

Leasing

Internet, Telephone, and Utilities

Internet and Telephone

  • Internet: no deposit for dial-up, $25.00 for high-speed
  • Telephone: $39.00 connection fee, $50.00 deposit if getting long distance service

For more information on internet and telephone, please visit Comporium's Web site.

Utilities

Consider not only your monthly costs, but any one-time, up-front costs such as security deposits or set-up fees such as:

  • Electric Service: $75 to $150 deposits depending upon your credit score
  • Natural Gas: $25.00 set-up fee plus up to $300.00 initial deposit depending upon your credit score
  • Sewer Service: $15 to $30 deposits depending upon your credit score
  • Water Service: $15 to $30 deposits depending upon your credit score

For more information on electric, water, or sewer deposits please visit the City of Rock Hill's Web site. You may also visit the York County Natural Gas Web site for more information on natural gas, safety guidelines, and natural gas appliances.