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Written by Joe Dusbabek
If you can get away with it, off-campus housing is definitely the way to go. Just the notion of not having to use a communal bathroom should turn you on. The apartments and houses formerly occupied by students are usually trashed, but that’s what college is all about. However, there really are some good, decent places; you just have to keep an eye open and look around. Low rent costs are among the best reasons to come to Tucson for college, seeing as how the same housing in another large American city could cost three to four times the price you'd pay here. It's not uncommon to get a four-bedroom house for $1,200 per month—total. Not bad!
That being said, it's a good idea to experience both the on-campus and the off-campus housing life—that’s right, the best of both worlds. It helps students appreciate what they might have otherwise taken for granted. Most people who live off campus are ready to do so, meaning they are mature and sensible enough to pay rent and clean their own toilets. Judging from the state of most off-campus apartment complexes, this isn't always the case. Fortunately, roommates living off campus tend to be more compatible than those in the dorms. Even if that's the case, there are always those unexpected fights over important things that can break up even the best of friends, such as squeezing the toothpaste from the top, replacing the toilet paper so that it comes out toward the back of the roll, eating all of the good cereal, and buying skim milk. Even if you get the worst-case roommate scenario, it's hard to fault Tucson's off-campus housing options much: you could do a lot worse elsewhere.
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