Looking for the right place to live in Ann Arbor may feel challenging as you prepare to move to Michigan. Starting your search as early as possible is certainly helpful since it allows you to consider a larger number of housing options. No matter when your search starts, however, there are a few important trade-offs to take into consideration. Below are the ones I took into account when I moved to Michigan for the first time and to a new place while already living in Ann Arbor.
The University of Michigan offers a variety of options in terms of housing on both North and Central campus – dorms, furnished apartments (Northwood I & II), unfurnished townhouses (Northwood IV & V), and the Munger Graduate Residences. Living on campus gives you quick access to your classes as well as university facilities. However, many students choose to live off campus. Free access to public transportation through your Mcard indeed makes it possible to reach campus relatively easily. More information on both on- and off-campus housing can be found on the university’s housing website.
That being said, if you do not have a car and do not plan on buying one in the near future, you may want to consider what location provides you with easier access to the places you expect to frequently go to. For instance, if you intend to work out every day, you may want to find a place near one of the recreational buildings. In terms of food, if you like to eat out, you may want to find a location where there are several different restaurants around. If you prefer to cook, you may want to live near a grocery store where you see yourself shopping in. If your house or apartment does not have any washers or dryers, it may make sense to live relatively close to a place where you can do your laundry.
When talking about location, price also needs to be taken into account. The homes with nicer facilities and convenient locations tend to have a higher price. Finding an apartment that is farther away from campus can bring down your costs.
Having Roommates or Living on Your Own?
While deciding whether to live with other people or alone, there are a couple of factors to consider. One the one hand, sharing a place with other roommates can be more affordable, since it allows you to cut rent and utility costs. On the other hand, living on your own provides you with more privacy and greater flexibility in terms of when to have guests, how to organize the space and arrange the furniture, what to watch on TV, etc.
Regardless of where you choose to live, Ann Arbor is a great town. I hope you make the most out of it. Good luck!
International Center Summer Orientation Peer Advisor
Country of Origin: ItalyPh.D. Candidate in Political Science