What To Do Before You Move into a Dorm Room

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Before Your Dorm Move To-Do List

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Summer is ending and that means that many students are going to be moving in to dorm rooms at their school for the fall semester. This can be an exciting and stressful time for young students, especially if it is the first time they are moving out of their home. Fear not, young scholars, Topmoving.ca will help make the move easier by providing this list of things to do before you move into a dorm room.

Contact your university's housing department and ask questions

If you are unsure about how moving in at your school is going to go, you can contact the school and ask any question you want. Being able to go with the flow is all good, but not knowing anything about your living arrangement will probably leave you ill-prepared. Here are some questions to ask:
  • How big is my room?
  • What are the shared areas?
  • How many roommates will I have? Furthermore, is it a suite, where it is essentially four people living in two connected rooms?
  • Can you provide me with my roommate's contact information?
  • Where are the bathrooms/showers?
  • What items are not allowed in dorms?
  • Where can I park or unload on moving day?
  • What else do I need to know or fill out when I arrive?
  • What furniture is provided in my dorm room?
The answers to these question should directly inform you of what you need to pack, but before you do that you should...

Contact your roommate

You and your roommate have some talking and planning to do. As early as you can, use e-mails or social media to get in contact with your roommate and try to get to introduce yourselves to each other. This person is probably going to live with you for several months, so getting some of the personal arrangements squared away before the move is advisable.

  • Inform them of any medical problems that you have. If you are allergic to something, you better tell your roommate, or else they may bring the offending substance in the dorm. They can also be prepped in how to handle emergency situations if you are diabetic or suffer seizures.
  • Decide who will bring what to avoid packing any redundant items. You should be able to have one entertainment center (including a TV and maybe a video game system) between the two of you. Of course if it becomes apparent that you two like very different things, then maybe you can sacrifice the space in your room for more personalized entertainment. If you can, share as many large items as possible. You better get used to sharing now, because this is just the beginning.
  • Find some common ground. Ask a bit about what types of movies or video games your roommate likes. If there is any overlap, be sure to bring those games/movies. Hopefully you both are at least casual gamers, because a shared, fun experience that you can have in your room is perfect for bonding with a roommate. Movies and TV shows are fun to share too, but the level of active camaraderie or friendly competition that gaming offers is at its best in a university setting.

Decide what to pack

  • Pack lightly. You have limited room, will share some things, and you will only be there for a few months
  • Only bring season appropriate clothes. Chances are you will visit home at some point during the semester so you can switch to your warmer wardrobe then.
  • Make sure you don't bring any items that are outlawed by your school. Anything illegal or fire-causing is not allowed. Review what is listed by your university.
  • Bring a month's supply of prescription drugs. University health centres get overwhelmed in the early part of semesters, so having enough (legal) drugs for some time would be a good idea.
  • Minimize entertainment items. One video game system and television between the two of you should be enough. Try to download as many games onto your hard drive as possible and use streaming services for TV and movies to minimize the amount of discs you bring.
  • Bring a small waterproof container for all of your toiletries so you can carry them to shared bathrooms and showers easily.
  • If you  think you are packing too much to bring in one day, ask the university if you could ship some items to the school before you move. 

Double check what move-in day entails, including your transportation

The school should provide some form of itinerary for the move-in procedure. It will include signing contracts and forms, so be prepared to have ID on you to help with the process. Remind your ride where the drop-off and unloading zones are. Be sure to check the school's websites to make sure there are no late changes to the move-in times and procedures.

If you are fully prepared, moving in to your dorm can be relatively low stress. And even if you forget something, you can always just have your mom bring it to you. That won't be embarrassing at all...

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on August 21, 2014

TopMoving.ca - Moving Expert
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