More College Students Living At Home
The number of students living at home while attending college is on the rise, which shouldn’t be much of a surprise considering the current state of the economy. What is surprising is the exact percentage of students who plan to reside at home this coming year – 58.5% – up sharply from 54.1% in 2008. These numbers were gleaned from a National Retail Federation (NRF) survey which also revealed that many students are postponing enrolling for advanced degrees until market conditions improve.
The NRF survey also revealed that off campus housing remains more popular than dorm/college housing with about 50% more of the students choosing to live in their own apartment instead of on campus. In addition, 2% of all students choose to live in fraternity/sorority housing, demonstrating that frat housing remains an option for some.
Of course, many of the students living at home would probably choose campus housing if it were available to them at a price that they could afford. In some cases, living away from home increases the cost of schooling by two to three times, closing the door on this option for the majority of students. Then again, if you get along well with your family, what’s not to like about living at home and enjoying Mom’s good cooking?
Tips For Coping With Living At Home
If you’re a college student who had previously lived at home and is now returning to live with the family full time, you could be in for a rude awakening. To that end, SayCampusLife.com offers practical coping skills for students and their family members:
Set Boundaries – Adult children who live at home oftentimes feel that their parents still want to be Mom or Dad to them, much in the same way that they were while in elementary school. Even though parents do foot the bill, adult offspring need a measure of independence in order to not feel constrained. Parents and student need to negotiate these boundaries which means that the student will have to do his or her share of the work around the house while parents respect that their offspring’s need for space.
Work Together – Living at home while attending college isn’t completely bad, in fact some students are more than happy to avoid campus housing or living out on their own. Meals are almost always better at home and laundry service can be unmatched elsewhere. Still, this also means that students need to contribute by handling some chores, perhaps even paying rent if they are holding down a part time job.
Reconsider – Some students are ready to open up their wings and strike out on their own, thus it could be in everyone’s best interest that other options to help them move out be explored especially if living at home just isn’t working out. Some students have successfully found free or low cost housing in a private home where the homeowner is looking for a “home sitter” while they are away. When home, the owner and the student interact on a level different than that between the parent and student.
Even if you still must live at home for this academic year, doesn’t mean you will have to endure this practice throughout college. The economy could improve over the next year or so, opening up fresh avenues for students to explore when it comes to their living arrangements. But remember, living at home has its advantages even when family tensions rides high and your privacy becomes a pressing matter.
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