Where are you living next semester?
“I am extremely excited to get to live off-campus this upcoming semester,” said sophomore John Sgro. “I enjoy a lot of things about living on-campus, but living off-campus gives a student a much better sense of freedom.”
With the end of another school year approaching soon, many upperclassmen at Sacred Heart are looking for housing options either on-campus or off-campus.
“Every year we have about 20% of our upperclassmen living in SHU housing,” said Greg Madrid, Director of Residential Life at Sacred Heart. “There’s different reasons people would choose to live either on or off-campus.”
According to the Sacred Heart website, freshmen and sophomores are required to live on-campus unless they live within 35 miles of the school. Additionally, students who wish to live here must place a $500 deposit by March 11, which can be made either online, in-person or via mail.
However, there are still many students who would prefer to live off-campus despite some challenges to find housing.
“I waited too long to find a house off-campus and now it’s becoming a real challenge,” said sophomore Fritz Swingle. “At this point, there’s not too many homes with enough rooms that fit my budget and are close enough to campus. I urge any rising sophomores to start looking for houses early in the year.”
Housing has become somewhat costly and not only in local areas, such as Bridgeport and Fairfield, but all across the U.S. rent costs are rising.
According to the Associated Press, “Rental costs rose 0.5% in January from December, the Labor Department said last week. That may seem small, but it was the biggest increase in 20 years, and will likely accelerate.”
Additionally, there are other challenges associated with living off-campus according to Madrid.
“What a lot of people don’t realize when deciding their housing plans is that the price you pay to live in Sacred Heart housing will always be the same, whereas the price of renting a house can change,” said Madrid. “Things like electricity and heating are important things to consider since in a house, you can forget to turn the lights off and be charged for it, whereas on-campus, you don’t have to worry about those things.”
“Not dealing with Public Safety staff also makes a difference since, if you do make an unhealthy choice, there is a chance of a higher consequence,” said Madrid.
Despite this, students, like graduate student Matt Hefferman, have experienced both the positives and negatives of living on and off-campus and prefers the latter.
“I’ve experienced living both on-campus and off-campus at Sacred Heart and I’ve found that there are benefits to both options, but I personally think having your own house can be a much more fun choice,” said Hefferman. “Living off-campus not only gives you more freedom, but helps a person develop the required life skills that are necessary for growing up.”