Sensible and Budget-Friendly Dorm Room Organization Tips
Congratulations on your child's acceptance to college. It's a tremendous step in their life. It’s the next chapter in a story that will be theirs to write from this point on. So, preparations are needed right now, especially if your child is going to be staying on campus. While they're going to get four walls, a bed, and a desk, the rest of the decorating is up to them. Well, up to them and their potential roommate. Not only is college a time to expand their minds but it's also the moment where they break free. Thus, they'll need to work together with their roommate, or several, to see what's needed for their dorm.
Organization is Key
The average size of a dorm room is around 130 square feet. When you add a desk, bed, closet, and refrigerator, there isn't much floor space left for much decoration. So the organization is going to be done over and under the bed and the desk area. To determine what to buy, follow these organization tips.
Talk to the Roommate(s) First
Don't start buying all the suggested items on the college's list until your child speaks to their dormmates first. They may have items already in mind. Thus, there might not be a need to purchase a bedroom whiteboard. Yes, room switches can take place due to disagreements or open spaces. And if that happens, items from the others can be replaced when needed.
Establish a Budget
In 2015, the average cost to decorate a dorm was the same number as the square footage -- $130. There's a good chance it costs a little more now, so a budget needs to be created. For instance, you probably don't want to spend a lot on a large white board. In fact, there's a good chance it won't fit on one of the room's walls anyway. Look for smaller boards or one that has the capability to fold so it can be stored under the bed or in the closet. In another example, there's no need to purchase special storage containers. Plastic models are going to be less expensive, lighter, and sturdier. Therefore, they'll last as long as your child is a student.
Focus on Compact Items
This is for two reasons. First, they will be easier to fit in the nooks and crannies of the dorm. Going back to the whiteboard, a smaller wipe board can be stored on a desk or closet shelf and retrieved when needed. Second, compact means an easier fit in their transportation to college. Whether you're driving or they have their own car, packing the vehicle with over-sized organizers increases safety issues. In other words, fitting a 10-drawer organizer in a sub-compact car is not the best idea.
There's no need to buy one unit for clothes, another for toiletries, and a third for books and study items. That costs too much and can be a burden to transport. Instead, look at the multipurpose organizational unit. Instead of three separate purchases, one multi-drawer unit can hold everything. If you discover it doesn't once you reach the dorm, then you can always purchase another unit when there.
Hook it Up
Not all storage needs to be in the form of drawers and shelves. You can also hang items to organize a dorm room. Of course, there's one caveat. Many dorms are designed with concrete blocks instead of drywall. Thus, nail-based hangers won't work. In addition, leaving holes in the walls can mean fines at the end of the year. Instead, consider hooks that attached with pull-off adhesive. By doing this, your child can move the hooks around by simply pulling off the adhesive. Further, when it's time to head home for the summer, they can quickly clean up.
Go Under (the Bed)
Regardless if it's a standard frame or a platform bed, a lot of organization can be done in the available space. Flat shoe containers, toiletries, and infrequently used items can be moved to that area. Just make sure the containers are tightly sealed against dust bunnies and other small rodents.
Your child is excited to purchase organizational items right now. However, let them take a breath before you head on out. Following these tips will help them move in quickly and store efficiently. This will help them start their college life with confidence and positive energy.