I’m moving to an apartment in Orlando for school, but I’m on a serious budget. Where should I start my search?

I just graduated with my master's degree in August, so I am very familiar with the toll that school expenses can take on your budget. On top of paying tuition and fees, you also have to worry about the cost of books and materials and transportation to and from campus for class, in addition to whatever miscellaneous expenses come up (like a lot of caffeine for those late-night study sessions). Fortunately, there are many great Orlando apartments for students that are designed to work with a student budget. To start your search, I recommend you…

Evaluate your costs as a whole.

It may seem like all your expenses are separate and distinct, but they influence one another. Rather than determine a set cost for rent and utilities, consider how they impact one another. For example, you may have a set budget for "transportation," but if you choose to live closer to where your classes are, like these apartments near Valencia College's West Campus, or you select an apartment on the route for the UCF Shuttle, which is free with a UCF student ID, you could drastically reduce the cost it takes you to get to and from class. That could make it worth it for you to prioritize Orlando apartments in those areas, rather than less expensive ones further away. There are only a few options for apartments in Orlando that are under $800 per month, but you expand the options that fit your budget when you consider your costs holistically.

Consider your wants vs. your needs.

If you want to feel like you live in a resort, there are some truly breathtaking luxury apartments in Orlando; however, they're not generally the most conducive to living on a budget. As much as you might want to have stainless steel appliances and granite countertops, they're not something you need to have in a great apartment. Prioritize apartments that meet the characteristics that are really important to you, whether that means they're close to campus, or they are pet friendly. You don't want to risk stretching your budget for a beautiful apartment that you can't even enjoy because you're too stressed about how you'll pay for it. Be mindful of how much you're willing to spend and know that your perfect place should hit all your needs, but it likely won't have all your wants.

Explore your roommate options.

A great option to get more apartment for your budget is to live with a roommate. (Don't trust the horror stories - there are plenty of great roommates out there!) Not only will you share the cost of the rent, but you'll also split your utilities, which means more money in your pocket at the end of the month. Put feelers out on social media to see if any friends or friends of friends are also moving to the area and looking for an apartment - you never know unless you ask. If you don't have anyone particular in mind, definitely check out Orlando apartments with individual leases and roommate matching, which can help pair you with a roommate(s) that best match your lifestyle. As long as you're willing to share some of your living area, having a roommate can greatly reduce your monthly costs. There's a lot to consider when selecting an apartment, but as long as you do your research, I'm confident you'll find a great place within your budget. Good luck!
These are the opinions of writers and not the opinions of 407apartments.com or any of our advertising partners.