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Post College Life: What's Next?

Congratulations—you made it! But when it comes to post college life, what comes next?

Graduating college is quite an accomplishment and one of many major milestones you’ll achieve. Whether you graduated on time and are eager to enter the real world, or if you took a few extra semesters to get it done, you’ve got the paper to prove you’re a college graduate! Now, as sad as it might seem, that part of your life is over.

As you grow older and college begins to become a memory, you’ll be experiencing new things with every step you take. From finding your first apartment, landing your first job, getting married, buying your first home, and starting a family (whether you’re raising fur babies or children of your own), your life will continuously change. But change is exciting! Look forward to these next turning points in life and remember, self-storage will be there for you every step of the way.

Just remember, graduation isn’t the end; post college life is just the beginning of many adventures to come.

What Comes After College?

Post college life can include many different things. It all depends on you and where you want to go in life. Here are some of the big ones:

  • Finding your first apartment
  • Getting your first job
  • Buying your first home
  • Starting a family

Life after graduation isn't one size fits all, but we're going to go through these common paths in greater detail.

Finding Your First Apartment

After living at home for 18 years, then spending a couple of semesters in dorms, the sorority or fraternity house or similar off-campus housing, officially getting your first apartment after graduation is a big deal. Whether you’re living with roommates or going solo, you should be proud of taking this next step! Here are a couple of tips to consider as you’re searching for the right place to start your post college life.

Do your research

This may be obvious, but it’s a great idea to do as much research as you can before committing to an apartment. You don’t want to say “yes” to the first apartment you come across, especially if you don’t see it in person. Pictures and videos online can be helpful, but until you step foot in the space you won’t know exactly what you’re getting yourself into.

Be sure to make a list of possible apartment complexes you’re interested in, and call ahead to set up tours. That way you can meet with someone to ask all your questions and get a feel for the space.

Consider the location

Location is a big deal. You want to make sure your apartment is in a safe neighborhood, in a good area, and near to groceries, restaurants and other things important in your life. If you know where you’ll be working, you may want to think about your commute time as well. Or, if you have family or friends nearby, consider where your apartment will be in relation to them.

Ask questions

While you’re doing the apartment search, ask as many questions as you want. Now’s the time to get all the answers before you actually commit to a new place. Some things you may want to ask about are utilities, laundry, mail, parking and even pets!

Get to know your property manager

It’s always a good idea to get to know who’s managing your property. In a perfect world, you’ll have zero issues with your apartment, and you’ll never need to contact them. But, at some point you’ll probably have to reach out to them with an issue or question. If possible, you will want to talk to him/her before signing a lease, or even speak with current tenants to make sure you’ll be in a good environment. 

Self-storage as a new apartment renter

It’s amazing how much college students can accumulate over four years. Even if you were diligent in getting rid of the clutter at the end of every semester, chances are you’ve still got more stuff than you need or want in your new adult life (ping-pong table, we’re looking at you). So, post college life, self-storage is a great solution for keeping your excess belongings safe and out of the way. This way, you'll be able to keep your new apartment fresh and organized.

Pro tip: A 5’ x 10’ storage unit is the size of a walk-in closet and can hold one or two pieces of furniture, boxes, sports equipment and more.

Bonus: You may end up living alone for the first time in your life. It's perfectly fine and quite fun! Check out tips for living alone for the first time.

Post College Life: Getting Your First Job

Your first job? Wow! You are killing it! Whether it’s your dream job right off the bat, or something to help you pay off those student loans, take a minute to be proud of this accomplishment. While you’ve officially entered the “working world" after graduation, remember you still have off days. Spend some time outside on the weekends, see family and friends, maybe even do things with your new coworkers. Work hard, but remember to have a social life outside of your job.

Self-storage as an employed graduate

As you begin to get into the rhythm of working every weekday, you may realize it’s time to get some hobbies. Whether you join a sports team, get your feet wet with water sports, or just like collecting, guess what might come in handy? A storage unit! Especially if you’re still in an apartment, your golf clubs, bike, paddleboard or comic books might not fit. So, store everything in a secure storage unit and have the peace of mind that your new pastimes are safe.

Pro tip: A 10’ x 10’ storage unit is half the size of a one-car garage and can hold the equivalent of a one-bedroom apartment.

Buying Your First Home

This may seem like a while down the road from graduation, but at some point, you may be thinking of buying a home. As exciting as it is, and even if you’ve been watching plenty of home-improvement shows to prepare, buying a home is just like renting your first apartment. Except it’s a little bigger. OK, a lot bigger. So be sure to do lots of research, find the right neighborhood and as always, keep self-storage in your back pocket.

Self-storage as a homeowner

First homes can be exciting, and even though they will be bigger than an apartment, you still might not have all the space you need. If you’re moving in with a roomie or a significant other, you may have duplicate items that won’t fit in your home. Or, if you have boats, cars, or RVs, you may need to take advantage of vehicle storage. Self-storage is a helpful tool to utilize as a new homeowner.

Pro tip: A 10’ x 15’ or a 10’ x  20’ storage unit can hold the contents of a small house, including major appliances. Whether you’re in a fixer-upper or getting a custom home built, storage units make great temporary storage.

Pro tip: Many storage facilities offer secure vehicle storage solutions to safely park cars, boats, RVs, side by sides and more during the offseason.

Starting a Family

Next big life-event, family. Getting ready to start a family is a major turning point in life, which brings even more change. You may start preparing for your new little one by getting furniture and redecorating a nursery. Then as your child grows up, you’ll put away the crib and replace it with a bed and have to buy a new wardrobe every minute.

As your child outgrows so many things, you may start to run out of space (as well as sleep, but we can’t help you there). So, you might need self-storage.

Start off with a pet

If starting a family or having kids isn’t for you, maybe you’ve officially decided to be a pet parent for the indefinite future. Now, pets don’t necessarily need as much as babies do, but they still take a lot of work. Especially if you pamper your pet with lots of toys and accessories, they’ll take up more space too.

Self-storage as a family

As your family grows, so will the amount of stuff you have. From baby clothes and furniture to old playpens and toys, storage units can hold it all. Not to mention hand-me-downs. Save your kids’ clothes to upcycle to friends’ children or nieces and nephews. If you’re in love with your current home but can’t fit all your belongings, self-storage is a great solution. Stay comfortable in your forever home and keep the extra memories with Store Space.

Pro tip: Keeping your storage unit organized makes it easy to access your items whenever you need. When you’re storing family items, consider using labelled bins to conveniently find items later.

Post College Life: Wrapping Up

Post college life can be stressful, but just keep in mind that it's a process!

Self-storage isn’t only beneficial during college, it comes in handy for every new adventure life throws at you. You can use more space at a variety of points in your life, and that’s why Store Space is here whenever you need, for all your self-storage needs. If you’ve decided it’s time to get a storage unit, check out our storage location finder for a location near you. At Store Space Self Storage, our secure, clean and affordable storage units are perfect for every next step in your life, graduation is just the beginning!

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